Catalectic

Entertainment / Literature / Catalectic: In poetry, a catalectic line is a truncated line in which one or more unstressed syllables have been dropped. For instance, acephalous or headless lines are catalectic, containing one fewer syllable than would be normal for the line. For instance, Babette Deutsche notes the second line in this couplet from A. E. Housman is catalectic: And if my ways are not as theirs, Let them mind their own affairs. On the other hand, in trochaic verse, the final syllable tends to be the truncated one, as Deutsche notes about the first two lines of Shelley's stanza: Music, when soft voices die, Vibrates in the memory-- Odours, when sweet violets sicken, Live within the senses they quicken. The term catalectic contrasts with an acatalectic line, which refers to a 'normal' line of poetry with the expected number of syllables in each line, or a hypercatalectic line, which has one or more extra syllables than would normally be expected.

Hypercatalectic

Entertainment / Literature / Hypercatalectic: A hypercatalectic line is a line of poetry with extra syllables in it beyond the expected number due to anacrusis, as opposed to a acatalectic line (which is missing one or more expected syllables) or MORE

Acatalectic

Entertainment / Literature / Acatalectic: A 'normal' line of poetry with the expected number of syllables in each line, as opposed to a catalectic line (which is missing an expected syllable) or a hypercatalectic line (which has one or more e MORE

Catalexis

Entertainment / Literature / Catalexis: In poetry, a catalectic line is shortened or truncated so that unstressed syllables drop from a line. If catalexis occurs at the start of a line, that line is said to be acephalous or headless. See ca MORE

Links
Home
Glossary
Thesaurus