Sunday, 3 June 2012

Entry: anapestic (adj.)

In context: "Pemulis taps his finger in a little anapestic gallop over the unit's top."

Definition: Not in the OED, but likely from anapest (n.)

An anapaest (also spelled anapæst or anapest, also called antidactylus) is a metrical foot used in formal poetry. In classical quantitative meters it consists of two short syllables followed by a long one; in accentual stress meters it consists of two unstressed syllables followed by one stressed syllable. It may be seen as a reversed dactyl. This word comes from the Greek ανάπαιστος, anápaistos, literally "struck back" (a dactyl reversed), from 'ana-' + '-paistos', verbal of παίειν, paíein: to strike.

Because of its length and the fact that it ends with a stressed syllable and so allows for strong rhymes, anapaest can produce a very rolling, galloping feeling verse, and allows for long lines with a great deal of internal complexity.



SNOOT score: 1
Page: 1021

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

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