8. An Etymology for the Dactylic Hexameter*

8§1 In his far-reaching survey of Indo-European poetics, Calvert Watkins remarks: “The origins of the Greek epic meter, the dactylic hexameter, are particularly challenging.” [1] His own contribution to the ongoing debate concerning the hexameter’s derivation is seminal. He writes: “I argued in passing in [Watkins] 1969 [p. 227] for a historical relation of the metrical contexts of the formula ‘imperishable fame’ in Greek and Vedic, and this topic was pursued in considerable detail in Nagy 1974, attacking the metrical problem via formulaics and formula boundary (typically corresponding to metrical boundary).” [2] The present inquiry pursues further the topic of metrical and formulaic boundaries, concentrating on the central question of finding a definitive etymology for the hexameter. The use of the word “etymology” will be explained at the end.
8§2 My 1974 book cited by Watkins followed methods pioneered by Milman Parry and Albert Lord. [3] My methodology combined the factors of meter, formula, and theme in oral traditions. [4] The alternative methods of those who {144|145} restrict their perspectives to quantitative metrics cannot succeed, I argued, in any attempt to arrive at a complete picture of the hexameter in its full diachrony.
8§3 As a metrical problem, the question of the hexameter’s “origin” has led to a variety of proposed solutions. Watkins points to an outline of archaic Greek meters by West as a key to the answer. [5] But then he cautions: “The precise details of the origin of the hexameter still remain a matter of debate.” [6] He mentions in passing the articles of Berg and Tichy as examples of alternative solutions. [7]
8§4 I propose to examine West’s proposed solution for the derivation of the hexameter, which I will contrast with the solution that I proposed. [8] To begin, I draw attention to a basic contrast in linguistic perspectives. For West, as also for Berg and Tichy, the derivation of the dactylic hexameter is a question of meter. [9] For me, to repeat, it has to be a question of meter and formula and even theme.
8§5 The thesis of my 1974 book about the meters and formulas and themes of the hexameter can be summed up in this brief formulation: “the formula is a phrase that is diachronically generated by the theme which it expresses and synchronically regulated by the meter in which it is contained.” [10] Similar arguments have been applied by Watkins to Indo-European poetics in general, summarized in the sections entitled “Formula and theme” and “Metrics” in his 1995 book. [11] His brief introductory section on “Metrics” concludes with this remark: “The quantitative metrics of Greek and Vedic, quite possibly reflecting a late dialectal protolanguage, will receive no further discussion in the present work.” [12] Given the wealth of Indo-European evidence that Watkins successfully adduces throughout the rest of his book by way of combining the factors of meter and formula and theme, I take his {145|146} remark as an implicit recognition of the relative impoverishment of metrical models that ignore the factors of formula and theme. [13]
8§6 Keeping in mind the interrelationship of meter with formula and theme, I propose to re-examine briefly the question of metrical and formulaic boundaries in the archaic Greek dactylic hexameter, especially in the hexameters of the Homeric Iliad and Odyssey. A convenient point of departure is the formulation of Daitz concerning the observance of pauses and non-pauses in the reading of Homeric hexameters. He advocates the reading of Homer (1) with pauses at verse-final position, regardless of enjambment and other factors, and (2) generally without pauses at verse-medial positions, regardless of caesura, diaeresis, and other factors. [14]
8§7 By “enjambment” I mean a syntactical runover from one verse to the next. By (1) “caesura” and (2) “diaeresis” I mean a word-break that is found respectively (1) within a foot and (2) between one foot and the next one. The “foot” in the dactylic hexameter is a quantitative sequence of one heavy syllable (–) followed by two light syllables ( ), with the option of substituting – for .
8§8 I propose that the formulation offered by Daitz, with modifications to be taken up below, needs to be extended. The question is not only how Homeric poetry was read but how it was performed and even how it was composed. The answer involves the patterning of metrical and formulaic boundaries in the hexameter. [15]
8§9 On the surface, the dactylic hexameter of Homeric poetry can be described in general terms as a self-contained syntactical unit. Allen quotes the observation of Kirk: “[the Homeric hexameter] tends to be more or less self-contained in meaning; its ending usually coincides with a major or minor pause, the end of a sentence or clause or at least the point at which a predicate is divided from its subject” (emphasis mine). [16] As Allen notes, similar observations can be made about other basic metrical units, such as the Latin Saturnian and the Indic pāda. [17]
8§10 Observations of this sort have led to the common assumption that there must have been a “pause” at the end of hexameter simply because there is a universal tendency for pauses to mark the end of basic syntactical units. Such an assumption is evident in the formulation of Lejeune as summarized by West: “[Lejeune] holds that a syllable followed by a pause, at verse-end {146|147} or in ordinary speech at sentence-end, has no definite quantity, because its duration is not ‘limitée par l’attaque d’une syllabe suivante’” (emphasis mine). [18] West extends this formulation further by treating pause not only as a neutralizer of distinctness between long and short syllables but also as a generalizer that turns all verse-end shorts into longs: “I see no reason not to treat its [= the verse-end syllable’s] duration as being what it would have been if another consonant+vowel had followed.” [19] Still, his assumption appears to be essentially the same as that of Lejeune: that syntactical pause at verse-end causes metrical pause.
8§11 There is a basic question that arises from such an assumption: what, then, are we to make of a syntactical pause marked by a caesura or a diaeresis instead of a verse-end? Can a caesura or a diaeresis also cause a metrical pause? After all, a caesura or a diaeresis can coincide—much like a verse-end—with syntactical pause. [20]
8§12 A related question concerns the concept of the colon as demarcated by caesuras and diaereses. According to the colon-theory of Hermann Fränkel (1955), the hexameter is actually built by cola, with each hexameter comprised of four cola demarcated by an “A/B/C” pattern of word-breaking (four kinds of A, two kinds each of B and C):

|| || || || || || || || x
  A1   A2   A3   A4       B1   B2     C1     C2          

Something essential is missing in this picture. There is a “#” to be placed immediately after “x” (= the last syllable of the line, of indeterminate syllabic quantity). It is easy to forget that the metrical boundaries of these “cola” in the hexameter are not only (1) “||” = caesura or diaeresis but also (2) “#” = the boundary for the end of the verse, which of course becomes ipso facto the boundary for the beginning of the next verse. The sequence of boundaries is …A…B…C…#…A…B…C…#…A…B…C…# etc.

8§13 There is a vital distinction to be made here: whereas both “||” (= A or B or C) and “#” can be markers of an optional pause in the syntax of the hexameter, only “#” may be described as the marker of an obligatory pause in the meter of the hexameter. In sum, the term “metrical pause” is appropriate only for verse-end, but it is inappropriate for a caesura (Fränkel’s A1, A2, A4, B1, B2, C1) or for a diaeresis (A3, C2).
8§14 There are further qualifications to be made as we follow through on the {147|148} assumption that syntactical pause causes metrical pause. Having addressed the basic question concerning syntactical pause as marked by a caesura or a diaeresis, we may proceed to some related questions concerning syntactical non-pause as marked by enjambment. Are we to consider the phenomenon of enjambment, especially the kind that is “necessary” from a syntactical point of view, to be a metrical irregularity? Since there is no syntactical pause in cases of “necessary” enjambment, are we to assume that there is no metrical pause in such cases? Further, are we to assume that syntactical non-pause at verse-end actually causes metrical non-pause?
8§15 Anticipating my conclusions, I propose that syntactical pause can be invoked as causing metrical pause at verse-end only if we take an exclusively diachronic point of view. From the synchronic point of view, metrical pause is independent of syntax. [21] A case in point is the phenomenon of necessary enjambment, where an obligatory metrical pause marked by verse-end (#) may intervene in the syntax without creating a syntactical pause in the transition from one verse to the next. [22] The work of Higbie (1990), Bakker (1990), and Clark (1994 and 1997) has proved that Homeric enjambment—including the “necessary” kind—is synchronically intrinsic, not extrinsic, to the formulaic system of Homeric diction. [23]
8§16 Conversely, again from the synchronic point of view, syntactical pause is independent of meter. A case in point is the phenomenon of the caesura or diaeresis, where an optional syntactical pause marked by verse-medial word-break (||) may intervene in the meter without creating a metrical pause in the flow of the rhythm within the hexameter. To be more precise: a caesura or a diaeresis may optionally mark a syntactical pause, but it does not at the same time mark a metrical pause—in the sense of a pause in the flow of the rhythm. [24]
8§17 Examples (“#” = verse-initial / verse-final position; “ ||” = caesura or diaeresis):

1. Metrical pause at verse-final position, regardless of syntactical non-pause (= enjambment): …ἠελίοιο # ἤσθιον… at Odyssey I 8–9. If there were no metrical pause at #, then the hiatus would not be allowed. [25] I suggest that there is a related phenomenon to be found in the observance of “movable {148|149} ν” at verse-final position in Ptolemaic papyri—regardless of what follows in verse-initial position. [26]
2. No metrical pause at verse-medial position, regardless of syntactical pause at caesura or diaeresis: χαλκοῦ τε χρυσοῦ τ᾿ ἀπολύσομεθ᾿. || ἔστι γὰρ ἔνδον at Iliad XXII 50 (the At scholia give ἀπολύσομεν). Compare βάλλ᾿· || αἰεὶ δὲ… at Iliad I 52. This example has prompted the following remark: “A pause of one mora after βάλλ᾿ will have the effect of adding a syllable to the line, defeating the purpose of the elision.” [27] We may compare also πλάγχθη· || ἐπεὶ… at Odyssey i 2: a metrical pause would have canceled the correption (that is, the shortening of word-final vowel by way of juxtaposition with a succeeding word-initial vowel). [28]
8§18 Such examples of syntactical pauses at “||” and of syntactical non-pauses at “#” point to a major problem with Fränkel’s concept of the four-colon hexameter as the primary shaper of Homeric diction. Although his “A/B/C” system of caesurae and diaereses provides an elegant taxonomy for patterns of word-breaking within the metrical framework of the dactylic hexameter, it does not account for the actual mechanics of formulaic composition, which extend beyond that framework. Rather, it merely describes the surface conditions of word-placement within the hexameter.
8§19 It is essential to re-assess Fränkel’s concept in light of Parry’s demonstration that Homeric diction was built by a system of formulas. Within the larger context of this system of formulas, as Parry’s work makes clear, there is a synchronic correlation of “#” and of “||” with formulaic junctures in Homeric diction. Rossi (1965) and others have attempted to reconcile Parry’s model of a formulaic system with Fränkel’s model, which holds that Homeric diction was built by a system of four “cola” conditioned by the “A/B/C” patterning of “||.” Such attempts cannot succeed, in my opinion, if they are to be based {149|150} on the view that the meter of the hexameter actually generated the formulaic system of Homeric diction. Such a view shapes the theory of Rossi. [29]
8§20 My counter-theory about meter and formula in the hexameter can be summarized by way of three main points: [30]

1. From a diachronic point of view, meter is a result rather than a cause of traditional phraseology.
2. From a synchronic point of view, however, meter contains or frames the traditional phraseology that we call formulas. Further, “recent metrical developments may even obliterate aspects of the selfsame traditional phraseology that had engendered them, if these aspects no longer match the meter.” [31]
3. As we switch from the diachronic perspective to the synchronic, the factor of containing is reversed: traditional phraseology contains rhythms that evolve into meters (diachronic perspective), and meters contain traditional phraseology that we call formulas (synchronic perspective). [32] Some of these formulas may preserve rhythmical patterns that had shaped the meters that now contain the formulas. [33]
8§21 Rossi rejects what he describes as “genetic” models of explaining the dynamics of Homeric hexameter. [34] As examples of “questa via genetica,” he cites my model (N 1974, 1979b, 1992 = 1996c) and that of Gentili (1977 = 1996; with Giannini 1977). I object to Rossi’s application of the term “genetic.” Rather, my model combines the synchronic perspective with the diachronic. [35] As for Rossi’s own model, it contains an implicitly “genetic” dimension of its own: by arguing that the dactylic hexameter, as analyzed by Fränkel, was and always had been the near-exclusive shaper of the Homeric system of formulas, he is in effect implying that the genesis of the Homeric {150|151} formula as a phraseological system is to be traced back to the dactylic hexameter as a metrical system.
8§22 In the context of disputing “genetic” solutions in general, Rossi specifically rejects models that explain the hexameter in terms of a combination of two cola, as opposed to Fränkel’s four-colon model. [36] It seems to me evident that Rossi is referring here to the formulation of Gentili, [37] who follows, with qualifications, the two-colon model of West. [38] Gentili speaks consistently of “cola” as the constituents of the hexameter. [39] In terms of his argument, these “cola” are derived from the “cola” attested in the meters of (1) archaic Greek verse-inscriptions and (2) archaic choral lyric poetry, especially the songs of Stesichorus.
8§23 Let us look more closely at the two-colon model as most recently outlined by West. [40] He starts with an eight-syllable lyric “colon” shaped x – x, and he posits two kinds of juxtaposition.

B1: (x) – – (x) # x – – x
B2: (x) – – x # x – – x

I label the two kinds of juxtaposition “B1” and “B2” because West’s intent is to make them correspond respectively to the main caesura patterns of hexameter, labeled B1 and B2 in Fränkel’s scheme. There are problems, however, in making the numbers of syllables “add up” to the B1 and B2 patterns of hexameter. West is forced to cancel, without diachronic justification, the “x” in three different places, as marked by the instances of parenthesized “(x)” above. There are also problems in deriving hexameter sequence … – || – … from West’s posited sequence … – || x – … (B1). Similarly, there are problems in deriving hexameter sequence … – || … from West’s posited sequence … – x || x … (B2).

8§24 West’s ingredient for the hexameter’s “origin,” the colon x – – x, is a basic unit of dactylo-epitrite meters, still attested in the songs of the choral lyric poet Stesichorus (also in the songs of Pindar and Bacchylides, though their metrical systems are not nearly as archaic). A fundamental work on the dactylo-epitrite meters of Stesichorus is an article by Haslam (1978). As Watkins notes, Haslam is “assuming that it [= the metrical system of Stesichorus] was a development of the hexameter; but later West {151|152} 1982:29–56 showed that the hexameter could be derived from the Stesichorean line, and that this poet provided the critical link between choral lyric and epic.” [41] More could have been said here. West’s proposed solution is not the only one, and there may be preferable alternatives.
8§25 For my part, I prefer the arguments I presented in my 1979 article, where I proposed that some of the phraseology framed by the choral lyric meters of Stesichorus is cognate with some of the phraseology framed by the epic hexameter. [42] My 1979 arguments for a metrical and formulaic link between epic and choral lyric were later developed into the book Pindar’s Homer (1990), containing an Appendix that offers a diachronic sketch of all metrical and formulaic components of epic and choral lyric. [43]
8§26 Although I disagree with Rossi’s model, I agree with his main objection to the two-colon model proposed by West and followed in part by Gentili. West’s scheme does not explain how a combination of two cola ever became a single unified metrical frame, the dactylic hexameter. My objection to the model of West applies even more to that of Gentili, who posits not only one combination of two “cola” but also many other combinations of other “cola”: somehow, all of these different combinations of cola in different shapes and sizes are supposed to come together and become, here again, a single unified metrical frame, the dactylic hexameter. I infer that Gentili considers his own model “polygenetic,” in view of his opposition to what he calls “soluzioni monogenetiche.” [44] The scenario of polygenesis, a variation on West’s model of bipartite genesis, makes it even harder to explain the synchronic metrical unity of the historically attested dactylic hexameter.
8§27 The alternative model that I offer, however, is not “monogenetic.” It is {152|153} not even “genetic,” as I noted earlier, inasmuch as it combines a synchronic perspective with the diachronic. Applying as a metaphor the word monophuḗs ‘single’ in the botanical sense of describing a tree or herb with a single stem (Theophrastus Historia Plantarum 2.6.9, Dioscorides 4.114), I propose “monophysis” as a term for describing the synchronic reality of the hexameter as a singular and unitary metrical frame, in contrast to Gentili’s “polygenesis.” On the other hand, “polygenesis” is an apt term for explaining the diachronic reality represented by the vast variety of formulas, in all their different shapes and sizes, that are all ultimately accommodated by the unifying framework of the hexameter.
8§28 With these observations in mind, I arrive at the question: is there an etymology for the dactylic hexameter? My use of the word “etymology” in the wording of the question makes the answer difficult. This is appropriate, since the problem of the hexameter is complex and resists facile solutions. The search for etymologies entails the laborious process of linguistic reconstruction, demanding the rigorous application of all levels of linguistics—morphology and syntax as well as phonology. It also demands a combination of synchronic and diachronic perspectives. To explain the “origins” of hexameter by looking only at metrics and not at formulaics is the equivalent of arriving at an etymology by looking only at phonology and not at morphology and syntax. To ignore the synchronic point of view in the analysis of meter and formula is the equivalent of treating language merely as a mass of data, not as an integral system.
8§29 The “etymology” that I proposed for hexameter in the Appendix of my 1990 book involves both metrics and formulaics, both the synchronic and the diachronic perspectives. I offer here only a brief sketch of some of the essentials: [45]

1. The hexameter can be reconstructed as a single metrical frame, cognate with an Aeolic meter attested in the poetics of Alcaeus:
x x – – x

From a synchronic view of Aeolic metrics, this meter is not a distich. From a diachronic point of view, however, we may say that it evolved out of phraseology that could also produce, in other situations, metrical distichs. From a synchronic view of Homeric metrics, the hexameter is not a distich, either. [46] The common cultural perception of the hexameter in the historical context of the Classical period and later makes the unity of this meter {153|154} unambiguously clear: the “hexameter” is exactly what the name says it is, a rhythmical frame that is measured in six parts—a hexametros tonos (Herodotus 1.47.2, 1.62.4, 5.60; cf. 5.61.1; iambic trimeter is a trimetros tonos: 1.174.5). The same perception could apply to the Aeolic meter from which I derive the hexameter. [47]

2. From a synchronic point of view, the formulas of Homeric diction are regulated by the metrical frame of the hexameter. From a diachronic point of view, the formulaic boundaries of Homeric diction coincide with the caesuras, diaereses, and verse-ends of the hexameter:

# || || || || || || || || x #
      A1   A2   A3   A4       B1   B2     C1     C2              
3. From a diachronic point of view, the singular metrical frame of the hexameter accommodates a plurality of formulas. [48] Some of these formulas in hexameter are cognate with some of the formulas that evolved in the context of Aeolic meters. Examples include phraseology demarcated by C1___# and by B1___#. [49] Other formulas in hexameter are cognate with formulas that evolved in the context of “dactylo-epitrite” meters. Examples include phraseology demarcated by #___B1 and B2___#. [50]
4. Formulas are a synchronic reality in the traditional diction of lyric poetry, not just epic. [51] In comparing the meters of lyric and epic, the formulaic repertoires of both lyric and epic must be taken into account. [52]
8§30 My inquiry started with the argument that the principles of (1) pausing between hexameters and (2) non-pausing within hexameters need to be extended from the reading of Homer to the actual performing of Homer. For the sake of reconstructing backward in time, we must begin with the attested textual traditions of Homer, which reflect the historical context(s) of {154|155} Homeric performances by rhapsodes. I have argued elsewhere that rhapsodic traditions of performance cannot be divorced from Homeric traditions of composition—if we take a diachronic point of view. [53] The diachrony of Homeric traditions involves performance, not just composition. The synchronic realities of composition-in-performance, observed by Albert Lord in living oral traditions, [54] need to be traced diachronically throughout the full historical range of Homeric performance traditions. [55] The principles of pause and non-pause in Homeric hexameter reflect these realities.


8§31 Testimonia concerning the observance of pause at verse-end (nos. 1, 3–5 after Daitz 1991):

1. Cicero De oratore 1.61.26l: … et coniectis in os calculis, summa voce versus multos uno spiritu pronuntiare consuescebat ‘… and with pebbles inserted into his mouth, he [Demosthenes] grew accustomed to declaim, at the top of his lungs, many verses on a single breath’ (tr. Daitz).
8§32 Cf. Daitz p. 152, who argues that the regime of declaiming more than one verse in one breath implies that the normal practice was to declaim one verse with each breath.

2. In addition to the examples adduced by Daitz, we may note the following context of the Greek word stikhos, parallel to Latin versus, in Plutarch’s Life of Demosthenes, where the same regime is described and where the source is said to be Demetrius of Phalerum (FGH 228 F 17), who reportedly heard Demosthenes himself tell about this regime:

τοῖς δὲ σωματικοῖς ἐλαττώμασι τοιαύτην ἐπῆγεν ἄσκησιν, ὡς ὁ Φαληρεὺς Δημήτριος [FGH 228 F 17] ἱστορεῖ, λέγων αὐτοῦ Δημοσθένους ἀκοῦσαι πρεσβύτου γεγονότος· τὴν μὲν γὰρ ἀσάφειαν καὶ τραυλότητα τῆς γλώττης ἐκβιάζεσθαι καὶ διαρθροῦν εἰς τὸ στόμα ψήφους λαμβάνοντα καὶ ῥήσεις ἅμα λέγοντα, τὴν δὲ φωνὴν γυμνάζειν ἐν τοῖς δρόμοις καὶ ταῖς πρὸς τὰ σιμ’ ἀναβάσεσι διαλεγόμενον καὶ λόγους τινὰς ἢ στίχους ἅμα τῷ πνεύματι πυκνουμένῳ προφερόμενον·
Plutarch Life of Demosthenes 11.1.1ff
For his physical disabilities he conducted the following regimen, as reported by Demetrius of Phalerum [FGH 228 F 17], who says that {155|156} he heard it from Demosthenes himself, who was by now an old man: that he [= Demosthenes] got under control and corrected, by way of physical training, the slur and lisp in his speech by putting pebbles into his mouth while delivering speeches, and that he exercised his voice by running and by going uphill while delivering verses within one concentrated breath.
3. Cicero Orator 9.4.108: ex hoc genere illud est Crassi: “missos faciant patronos; ipsi prodeant”—nisi intervallo dixisset “ipsi prodeant,” sensisset profecto se fudisse senarium. ‘An example of this type may be cited from Crassus: “missos… prodeant.” If he had not paused before (the words) “ipsi prodeant,” he would have immediately recognized that he had produced a senarius’ (trans. Cunningham).
8§33 Cf. Daitz p. 154n9: “The clear implication of this passage is that the only element which identified Crassus’ words as prose rather than poetry was the internal pause (intervallum) he had made at sense boundary. Hence we may conclude that in Cicero’s time, poetry was normally not recited with internal pause at sense boundary.”

4. Quintilian 9.4.93: … in fine pro longa accipi brevem, quia videtur aliquid vacantis temporis ex eo quod insequitur accedere ‘a concluding short syllable is usually regarded as equivalent to a long because the time-length which it lacks appears to be supplied from that which follows’ (trans. Butler). Cf. Daitz 1991:152.
5. Quintilian 9.4.108: Sed hic est illud “inane” quod dixi: paulum enim morae damus inter ultimum atque proximum verbum (turpe duceret), et “turpe” illud intervallo quodam producimus ‘This example also illustrates the “inane” I spoke of above, since we put a brief pause between the last two words (turpe duceret) and lengthen the last syllable of “turpe” by a kind of pause or delay in utterance’ (trans. Cunningham). Cf. Daitz p. 154n8. {156|157}


[ back ] * The original version of this essay is N 1998d.
[ back ] 1. Watkins 1995:21.
[ back ] 2. Watkins 1995:21.
[ back ] 3. Parry 1971 = MHV; Lord 1960. For bibliography on Parry’s and Lord’s definitions of “formula” and “theme,” see N 1996c:102–103.
[ back ] 4. N 1974; summarized in N 1979b:614–618; 1996c:100–103.
[ back ] 5. Watkins 1995:21, referring to West 1982:29–56.
[ back ] 6. Watkins 1995:21.
[ back ] 7. Berg 1978, Tichy 1981a and 1981b. See Magnelli 1996 for a brief survey of the explanatory models offered by Berg, Tichy, West, and myself. The list of other views that Magnelli surveys includes those of Campanile, Cantilena, Fernández Delgado, Gentili, Hoekstra, Hoenigswald, Horrocks, Itsumi, Ivanov, Jahn, Janko, Latacz, Peabody, Ritoók, Ruijgh, Sicking, Visser, and Vigorita.
[ back ] 8. My solution as published in N 1974 is supplemented in a later work, N 1979b, which offers a new dimension to the earlier solution.
[ back ] 9. See especially Magnelli 1996:123 on Berg’s model.
[ back ] 10. N 1979b:617, reexamined in N 1996c:102.
[ back ] 11. Watkins 1995:16–19 and 19–21 respectively.
[ back ] 12. Watkins 1995:21.
[ back ] 13. On theme and thematics, see already N 1974:229–261.
[ back ] 14. Daitz 1991. See now N 2000e.
[ back ] 15. Again, N 2000e.
[ back ] 16. Allen 1973:113 quoting Kirk 1962:60.
[ back ] 17. Allen 1973:113, with bibliography.
[ back ] 18. Lejeune 1955:259, 299, summarized by West 1982:9.
[ back ] 19. West 1982:9.
[ back ] 20. Cf. West 1982:36, with a map of “sense-pauses” marked by caesura, diaeresis, and verse-end in the hexameter.
[ back ] 21. N 2000e.
[ back ] 22. See N 1974:120–135, with striking examples from lyric meters.
[ back ] 23. For a particularly useful sketch, see Bakker 1997a:149–155.
[ back ] 24. N 2000e.
[ back ] 25. Cf. Daitz 1991:152. Cf. also Higbie 1990:28 and 59n1 on non-elision between verses in Homeric diction.
[ back ] 26. On the possibility that it was Aristarchus who initiated the new editorial policy of omitting verse-final movable ν, see S. West 1967:17, with further references. I think it is relevant that Aristarchus was relatively uninterested in the performance traditions of Homeric poetry, preferring instead to edit the Homeric paradosis as if it were a text originally written by Homer: see PP 130, 150–152.
[ back ] 27. Daitz 1991:155.
[ back ] 28. The stance of Aristarchus, as outlined at n. 26 above, helps explain the attitude of the later scholar Nicanor (fragments edited by Friedländer 1850), whose system for punctuating the Homeric text rules out the factor of performance. Cf. Daitz 1991:150, who shows that the various “morae” that Nicanor posits at syntactical pauses, especially at syntactical pauses marked by a caesura or a diaeresis, make it impossible for a performer / reader to maintain the rhythm of the hexameter. On Nicanor’s system of morae, reflecting purely syntactical considerations rather than any sort of performative pause, see Blank 1983.
[ back ] 29. Rossi 1996:313. See Magnelli 1996:123–124 for a survey of other theories shaped by this view. An extreme example is Hoekstra 1981:33–53.
[ back ] 30. N 1996c:103.
[ back ] 31. N 1974:145. It goes without saying that meter, in any given historical situation, may even be extraneous to formula. For an extreme example, we may consider situations where the system of metrics is borrowed by one language from another: cf. Allen 1973:15.
[ back ] 32. For an illuminating discussion entitled “From Rhythm to Meter,” see Bakker 1997a:146–155.
[ back ] 33. N 1974:140–149.
[ back ] 34. Rossi 1996:313–314.
[ back ] 35. I also object to the way in which my model is described by Gentili 1977 = 1996:35: his use of the word priorità (he says that one cannot establish “priority” between formula and meter) blurs the distinctions that I make between diachronic and synchronic perspectives.
[ back ] 36. Rossi 1996:314.
[ back ] 37. Gentili 1977 = 1996:31–32.
[ back ] 38. Gentili 1977 = 1996:31n56, citing West 1973:169n10.
[ back ] 39. Gentili 1977 = 1996:31–33; cf. Giannini 1977 = Gentili 1996:42.
[ back ] 40. West 1996:236.
[ back ] 41. Watkins 1995:21. The two-colon model is evident from the discussion in West 1982:35–39.
[ back ] 42. N 1979b, especially p. 627.
[ back ] 43. PH 439–464 is the Appendix. The electronic publication of these printed pages is an improved version of this Appendix, because several typographical errors have been corrected: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:hul.ebook:CHS_Nagy.Pindars_Homer.1990. There is also a printed publication that incorporates these corrections and that recapitulates the results of all my work on formula and meter in epic and in choral lyric, N 1996c. For the record, I list here the corrigenda for the printed version of my Appendix to Pindar’s Homer: p. 452 line 17, “D+D” not “B+D”; p. 459n108 line 2/ 1st metrical string, – – x – – – not – x – – – (x = “anceps”); p. 459n108 line 2 / 2nd metrical string, – – n – – – not – n – – – (n = “anceps” or “biceps”/“macron”); p. 459n108 line 5, delete “IV 202,”; p. 459n108 line 6 / 2nd metrical string, – – x – – – not – x – – –; p. 459n108 line 9 / last metrical string, the initial o should be x; p. 463 line 13, delete the initial –; p. 463n123 line 2, ἁλμυρὸν not ἅλμυρον; p. 463n123 line 3, ἁλμυρὸς not ἁλμυρος; pp. 463n123 line 5, “ὕδωρ displaces πόντος” not “πόντος displaces ὕδωρ”; p. 464 line 1, “~*” not “*~.”
[ back ] 44. Gentili 1977 = 1996:34.
[ back ] 45. Besides the Appendix of PH = N 1990a, and the electronic version as cited at note 43, I offer an overall exposition in N 1996c.
[ back ] 46. Still, the hexameter synchronically matches the length of a distich formally, esthetically, and even cognitively. See Bakker 1997a:148, who suggests that the hexameter, in terms of cognitive psychology, “cannot be an original discourse unit: it is simply too long to be grasped in its entirety by the poet’s and listener’s consciousness.”
[ back ] 47. On the evolution of the “Aeolic” base (= x x) into the first “foot” (= – – or – ) of the hexameter, see the updated formulation in N 1996c:90.
[ back ] 48. On the “tricolon crescendo” effect of the pattern #___A4____C1_____#, see Bakker 1997a:150–151.
[ back ] 49. On the application of the term “dactylic expansion” to the phenomenon exemplified by cognate phraseology shaped C1___# (shorter phrase) and B1______# (longer phrase), see N 1996c:83–85. The objections of Gentili 1977 = 1996:35–36 to my earlier analysis of “dactylic expansion” in N 1974:68–71 do not take into account the combination of synchronic and diachronic perspectives that I had applied to that phenomenon.
[ back ] 50. There is an extensive study of such patterns in N 1996c.
[ back ] 51. This is one of the basic arguments in N 1974, with detailed documentation; for a survey of examples, see N 1996c:93–94.
[ back ] 52. This point is missed by Hoekstra 1981:33–53 and others.
[ back ] 53. PP 70–86; further arguments in HQ.
[ back ] 54. Lord 1960.
[ back ] 55. Cf. HQ Ch.2 and Ch.3.