Metrical Constraint and the Interpretation of Style in the Tragic Trimeter

Metrical Constraint and the Interpretation of Style in the Tragic Trimeter

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Metrical Constraint and the Interpretation of Style in the Tragic Trimeter is an interpretation of the choices the Greek tragedians made in regard to certain forms of standardized variations in word order and prosody. Dr. Nicholas Baechle demonstrates that in their compositional practice the tragedians collectively decided to use certain prosodic variations to fit metrically intractable words and phrases. This book is grounded in metrical constraint and the mechanics of trimester composition, but also extends to a greater understanding of the stylistic sensibilities of the tragedians and of their feeling for the generic ethos of tragic dialogue. By means of comparisons with Aristophanes' general practice, and with paratragic imitations of tragic style, the distinctiveness of the style of tragic dialogue versus the rendition of speech in comedy is made clear. Metrical Constraint and the Interpretation of Style in the Tragic Trimeter offers a critical and sophisticated perspective on Greek drama that will appeal to anyone interested in language and classical more

Product details

  • Paperback | 362 pages
  • 149.9 x 223.5 x 27.9mm | 498.96g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 073912143X
  • 9780739121436

Review quote

...this is a sound, detailed study, useful for scholars of metrics, tragedy, and comedy... -- Anne Mahoney, Tufts University Bryn Mawr Classical Review Baechle gives us a broad, rigorously conducted, and theoretically sophisticated exploration of the iambic trimeter in Greek tragedy. But his achievement extends far beyond this technical tour de force. From his analysis of compositional factors, including hyperbaton, prosodic variation, and intractable word shapes, there emerges a major contribution to our understanding of dramatic style and metrical constraints, the aesthetic differences between dialogue and lyric, variations in the rhythmic qualities of the three tragedians, and of the way Old Comedy played against the trimeter of serious drama. -- Victor Bers, Classics Department, Yale Universityshow more

About Nicholas Baechle

Nicholas Baechle is Assistant Professor in the Hanover College Classics more

Table of contents

Part 1 Treatment of Word Shapes in Composition and the Use of Prosodic Variation Chapter 2 Definition of Word Shapes Chapter 3 Metrical Lengthening of Short Final Vowels Chapter 4 Correptio Attica vs Metrical Lengthening Chapter 5 Synizesis Chapter 6 Elision and Lengthening of Words Shaped Part 7 The Use of Hyperbation in Composition and its Interpretation Chapter 8 Marked Forms of Word Order for Prepositional Phrases Chapter 9 Metrical and Prosodic Variations at Mid-Line Chapter 10 Hyperbata of the Form Modifier-Verb-Noun or the Reverse Chapter 11 Distribution of Word Shapesshow more