Dactyl, Dactylic (66 words)

Literary/ Cultural Context Note

  • The Literary Encyclopedia. WORLD HISTORY AND IDEAS: A CROSS-CULTURAL VOLUME .

Context

Dactylic: an ictosyllabic form of metre in which each beat (see prosody) is typically followed by two offbeats (a combination traditionally called a dactyl). In “The Charge of the Light Brigade” Tennyson uses dactyls to suggest the gallop of the horses (the last line is catalectic [see catalexis]):

* . . | * . .
Cannon to |right of them,

* . . | * . .
Cannon to |left of them,

* . . | * . .
Cannon in |front …

Citation: Groves, Peter Lewis. "Dactyl, Dactylic". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 01 November 2001; last revised 11 February 2005. [https://www.litencyc.com/php/stopics.php?rec=true&UID=250, accessed 27 October 2021.]

250 Dactyl, Dactylic 2 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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