Page images

interpretation of the rule of accent in pause-elision in Latin, which seems to me to grow out of the nature of the case, emphasizes that element of the accent which our best ancient authorities consider its essential characteristic. Even though we do not concede that they were correct, yet their statements seem clearly to imply that they interpreted accentus to be pitch-accent like the Greek. (Cf. Trans. Am. Phil. Assoc. XXXV, 65 ff.; Vendryes, 35; Sievers, Phonetik5, § 570, 216.)

The second syllable in pause-elision in Latin seems to allow an increase in stress rather than a rise in pitch. The second syllable is often such a word as the pronoun hic, and it is used in some cases even when emphasis falls on it, as in Verg. Ecl. i, 13. We do not, however, find that the pronoun could be replaced by a noun. The natural inference is that this pronoun, which is usually a sentence-enclitic, has the low tone of an enclitic, and that emphasis does not add so much to the pitch as to the stress.1

It seems to me that some evidence in relation to the pitch may be derived from elisions which occur at the end of a question. Though we may not be able to prove in any given case that the Romans used the rising inflection, yet in certain cases the probability would be in favor of the rising inflection, in others of the falling. The question arises whether there is the tendency to have an accented syllable in the second part of the elision, when, owing to the question,

In the two lines from the Antigone the exceptional character of the elisions is in harmony with the agitation of the speaker; in the three last lines the weakness of the first syllable of the elision is to be taken into account. Cf. footnote on -que, p. 93.

The Homeric poems show greater freedom of usage in regard to pause-elision than does later Greek verse. In Homer even accented nouns are not infrequently found, as: 11. i, 104; ii, 775, 807, 842; Od. i, 429; iv, 261.

1 The tendency to admit the imperative in pause-elision in preference to other forms of the verb is naturally explained by the relatively low pitch which characterizes the imperative. Horace has the following examples of this use of the imperative: esto, accipe, and aufer (p. 86); in the Oed. Tyr. lo 0. is thus twice employed (p. 106); one of the most exceptional cases in Dante is the imperative alza (p. 102); Milton also presents at least one striking example (p. 105).

2 No trace of the influence of pitch can be discovered in phonetics (Vendryes, op. cit. 39).

the first syllable would naturally have the rising inflection. Let us consider that case of elision in Persius which would seem to be the most exceptional of all when considered simply in relation to the general rule of pause-elision :

iii, 7 unus ait comitum. “ verumne? itane? ocius adsit.

The rising inflection would seem to be natural in verumne and itane. Such an interpretation would explain the accented long vowel of ocius in pause-elision. Itane probably has at least as prominent an accent on the first syllable as on the second. Here, as often, Persius imitates the form and spirit of comedy, and the normal accent of itane when elided, as it is in this case, would be on the first syllable in Plautus (Amer. Journ. Phil. XIV, 313). For tántane see Probus K. IV, 145. Catullus 77, 1, 2 Rufe, mihi frustra ac nequiquam credite amice

(frustra? immo magno cum pretio atque malo).

As in this case there is no means of indicating the question except by the tone of the voice, the rising inflection may be assumed. The accent of immo, which would otherwise be exceptional in pause-elision, is explained by the high pitch of the preceding syllable. The following cases of pause-elision seem somewhat similar: Hor. Sat. i, 3, 20; i, 4, 126, 137. Such pause-elisions as these, even when the pitch of the two parts corresponds, is more marked and more abrupt than the normal form. In elisions with the low tone in both syllables, the effect of the pause is produced by the fall and rise of the voice, even though the actual pause be but slight. When the syllables in elision have the high pitch, the contrast between the sound and the pause is very marked. Accordingly in the more formal kinds of poetry we do not find elision used with a question which seems to require the rising pitch. The similarity in pitch may also be an element in such cases as Aen. ix, 427 me me (adsum . and Persius i, III euge! omnes. The accent on the ultima of euge is as strong as on the first syllable (Donat. K. IV, 371).

The accent of Latin stands in marked contrast to that of English, in which the stress is strong and is the main element, while the pitch is not fixed but free, and is a subordinate and variable quantity. In the Latin the element of pitch certainly seems to approach in importance the element of stress, even though it is not here claimed to be the most important element, as is implied in our ancient authorities. In the Romance languages pitch is a more marked element of accent than in the Teutonic languages. This may be attributed in part to their inheritance from the Latin and in part to climatic influences (Hempl, German Orthography and Phonology, § 248, 168). Some of the characteristics of the Latin accent may be illustrated by the French accent. We draw the inference from the relation of the accent to the second syllable in pause-elision in Latin that the important words in a sentence, such as nouns, have a higher pitch than unimportant and dependent words, and that long syllables have a higher pitch than short syllables. Distinct traces of these characteristics of the Latin pronunciation may be seen in the French. Viëtor (Elemente der Phonetik5, § 148, 305) says in reference to the French, “Im Satz trifft der höchste Ton gern die stärksten und längsten Silben."

The principle that the long accented syllable should be avoided in pause-elision appears to be more fundamental in the Greek and Latin than in the Italian and English, in which the element of pitch is less prominent. Tasso shows great freedom in the use of the accented syllable in pause-elision, and Milton in his earlier period did not recognize as essential the principle which prevailed in the Latin and which he afterward followed.

I have shown that a prominent accent is avoided in the second syllable of pause-elision in the more formal kinds of Latin verse. I have shown too that this principle is one of broad application and that it is carefully observed by Dante in his Divina Commedia and by Milton in his epics, and that Greek verse, although characterized by greater freedom of construction, does not disregard it. The difference between the treatment of pause-elision, and elision in which the elided words are closely connected in thought, clearly shows that there was a difference in the method of reading the two kinds of elision. As the principle which underlies the two types of elision in Vergil, Dante, and Milton is precisely the same, it naturally follows that the same method of reading applies in the case of the three authors. There is entire agreement in regard to the way in which the pause-elisions should be read in Dante and Milton, and consequently the method of reading Vergil is thereby clearly indicated.1

1 Additional light is thrown on the exceptional cases of pause-elision by a study of the drama. I shall consider elsewhere in the near future pause-elision in the drama and other phenomena of elision.

The suggestion has been made to me, while this was passing through the press, that the Vergil passage (Aen. v, 681) discussed on p. 93 ff. may be explained by assuming that udó sub robore may have been the common accentuation in prose in these stereotyped phrases, adjective, preposition (unaccented), noun; and that there would be a tendency to assimilate the accent of these expressions to that of pronominal phrases, such as quibúscum hominibus, and that accordingly the difference in accent of the two types would be but slight. However, the following considerations seem to me to militate against this view: (1) The use of cum as an enclitic proper seems to be limited to pronouns, and we are hardly justified in assuming that it may stand in the same relation to an attributive adjective. (2) If sub stands in the relation of enclitic to udo, it cannot be assumed that the accent of the penult of udo would be affected (cf. drws tws). It is a question how far even the inseparable enclitic affects the accent of the word to which it is attached. (3) Prepositions show a tendency to coalesce with the noun which fullows rather than with a preceding modifier of the noun. Prepositions in Greek are as a rule proclitic. This tendency may be illustrated in Latin by the caesura of such lines as the following: Aen. X, 212 spumea semifero sub pectore murmurat unda; cf. v, 525; Ecl. i, 8 (cf. A. J. P. XXV, p. 415). (4) Elision often occurs in similar phrases, as Aen. v, 129 frondenti ex ilice, and it does not seem in harmony with Vergil's method in the use of elision, even when the elided words are closely connected in thought, to elide a strongly accented syllable before an unaccented syllable. Such accentuation tends to produce hiatus (cf. A. J. P. 1. c. p. 273). (5) The relation of the word-accent to the short syllables of the dactyls occurring in the second and third feet is also an important consideration. I hope to show elsewhere that the rule of the accent in the case of these short syllables is very definite. For my present purpose I desire to point out that, when the first of two short syllables is a final syllable of a word of two or more syllables, the second short syllable of the dactyl has an accent and is usually the penult of a dissyllabic word (cf., for the corresponding usage in comedy, Klotz, Grundzüge, p. 255). Aen. vi, 460 ff. invitus, regină, tủ'o de litore cessi.

sed me iussă dě'um, quae nunc has ire per umbras,
per loca sentă si tu cogunt noctemque profundam,

imperiis egerě sůlis; nec credere quivi. The accent uds de would be most exceptional in this part of the verse and would seem to me to mar the rhythmical flow of the passage.

[blocks in formation]

The object of this paper is twofold: (1) to discuss the appropriateness of the name 'bucolic'as given to the diaeresis at the end of the fourth foot in dactylic hexameter, and (2) to examine the use of this pause by the Homeric poet from the standpoint of the connection of thought.

Marius Victorinus tells us (p. 114 K.) that this pause received the epithet 'bucolic' because of its frequent use by the bucolic poets. This statement is somewhat misleading. The Alexandrian poets generally (Aratus, however, uses it less than Homer) showed a fondness for it, and if all the genuine extant idylls of Theocritus be compared with the Hymns of Callimachus and the Argonautica of Apollonius Rhodius, it will be found that the diaeresis in question, at least when regarded as a pause in the sense, was used more frequently by both the latter poets. It is rather in the bucolic poems that its use abounds. A word ends with the fourth foot in 74 per cent of the verses of these poems, and there is a pause in the sense sufficient to warrant the use of at least a comma in 22 per cent (Kunst, de Theocriti versu heroico, Leipzig, 1887, p. 54), as compared with 19 per cent for the Hymns and 20 per cent for the Argonautica. But even in the bucolic idylls we do not find the most frequent occurrence of the bucolic diaeresis. In the 134 hexameter verses of the Epigrams of Callimachus (ed. Wilamowitz-Möllendorf, Berlin, 1882) there are but ten in which a word does not end with the fourth foot, and 60 per cent of the verses have a pause in the sense here. Furthermore, at times the Homeric poet uses the diaeresis quite as frequently as Theocritus does. In K 149-154, N 161-166, and v 209–214 there is at least a slight pause in sense at the end of the fourth foot for six consecutive verses. In 12 81-101 a word ends here in

« PreviousContinue »