This piece lays out the guidelines for Petrarchan sonnets.
Most people who know anything about poetry are familiar with the writing of John Milton. It is typically required reading for high school and college literature classes. What people may not know is that the form Milton is best known for is the Petrarch an or Italian Sonnet.
The Petrarch an sonnet consists of 13 lines and is usually in iambic tetrameter. That means there are typically 8 syllables per line. The Petrarch an sonnet follows a rhyme scheme of A, B, B, A, A, B, B, A, C, D, C , D , E, E. They have 3 stanzas which have no breaks between them and end with a couplet. Most Petrarchans have an adventure theme but they can be on just about any topic. There are other forms for writing Petrarch an sonnets but this is the form I typically follow.
My poem "The Tiger" is in Petrarchan form. You can see it in my port.