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  1. Torana

    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

    Mar 13, 2007
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    4 Types Of Meter

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Torana, Apr 15, 2007.

    here is where I would like to discuss and explain the four different types of meter.
    I hope that this helps you all out. The articles that I have used for this are from poetry meter
  2. Torana

    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

    Mar 13, 2007
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    Accentual Verse

    Accentual verse has a fixed number of stresses per line or stanza regardless of the number of syllables that are present. It is common in languages that are stress-timed such as English as opposed to syllabic verse, which is common in syllable-timed languages such as classical Latin.

    Nursery Rhymes are the most common form of Accentual verse in the English Language. The following poem, Baa Baa Black Sheep, has two stresses in each line, but a varying number of syllables. (Bold represents stressed syllables, and the number of syllables in each line is noted)

    Baa, baa, black sheep, (4)
    Have you any wool? (5)
    Yes sir, yes sir, (4)
    Three bags full; (3)
    One for the mas-ter, (5)
    And one for the dame, (5)
    And one for the lit-tle boy (7)
    Who lives down the lane. (5)
    Accentual verse derives its musical qualities from its flexibility with unstressed syllables and tends to follow the natural speech patterns of English.

    Accentual-syllabic verse is an extension of accentual verse.
  3. Torana

    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

    Mar 13, 2007
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    Syllabic verse is a poetic form having a fixed number of syllables per line or stanza regardless of the number of stresses that are present. It is common in languages that are syllable-timed such as Japanese or modern French or Spanish, as opposed to accentual verse, which is common in stress-timed languages such as English.

    Syllabic verse in English
    Dylan Thomas' "In My Craft Or Sullen Art" is an example of syllabic verse in English: it has seven syllables in each line, but no consistent stress pattern.

    In my craft or sullen art
    Exercised in the still night
    When only the moon rages
    And the lovers lie abed
    With all their griefs in their arms,
    I labour by singing light
    Not for ambition or bread
    Or the strut and trade of charms
    On the ivory stages
    But for the common wages
    Of their most secret heart.
    Syllabic poetry can also take a stanzaic form, as in Marianne Moore's poem "No Swan So Fine", in which the corresponding lines of each stanza have the same number of syllables.

    No water so still as the
    dead fountains of Versailles." No swan,
    with swart blind look askance
    and gondoliering legs, so fine
    as the chintz china one with fawn-
    brown eyes and toothed gold
    collar on to show whose bird it was.
    Lodged in the Louis Fifteenth
    Candelabrum-tree of cockscomb-
    tinted buttons, dahlias,
    sea urchins, and everlastings,
    it perches on the branching foam
    of polished sculptured
    flowers--at ease and tall. The king is dead.
    When writing syllabic verse, there is some flexibility in how one counts syllables. For example, diphthongs may count as one or two syllables depending on the poet's preference.

    A number of English-language poets in the Modernist tradition experimented with syllabic verse. These include Marianne Moore, Dylan Thomas, Louis Zukofsky, Cid Corman, and Leo Yankevich.

    [edit] Dissent
    In languages like Spanish and Japanese all syllables are pronounced with nearly the same length and nearly the same stress, and syllabic verse is conventional. In English, unstressed syllables are much weaker and shorter than stressed syllables, and English speakers adjust the timing of unstressed syllables so that there is always the same amount of time between one stress and the next. This means that an English speaker tends not to notice the number of syllables within a line of verse unless a stilted manner of recitation is adopted. The conventional pattern of accentual and accentual-syllabic rhythmic English verse is appreciated as poetry. Robert Wallace compares counting the number of syllables in a line as the equivalent of counting letters. [1]

    [edit] Syllabic verse in French
    See French poetry
    The modern French language does not have a significant stress accent (like English) or long and short syllables (like Latin). This means that the French metric line is generally determined by the number of syllables. The most common metric lengths are the ten-syllable line ("décasyllabe"), the eight-syllable line ("octosyllabe") and the twelve-syllable line (the so-called "alexandrine").

    Special syllable counting rules apply to French poetry. A silent or mute 'e' counts as a syllable before a consonant, but not before a vowel (where "h aspiré" counts as a consonant). When it falls at the end of a line, the mute "e" is hypermetrical (outside the count of syllables).
  4. Torana

    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

    Mar 13, 2007
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    Accentual-syllabic verse is an extension of accentual verse which fixes both the number of stresses and syllables within a line or stanza. Accentual-syllabic verse is highly regular and therefore easily scannable. Usually, either one metrical foot, or a specific pattern of metrical feet, is used throughout the entire poem; thus we can talk about a poem being in, for example, iambic pentameter. Poets naturally vary the rhythm of their lines, using devices such as inversion, elision, feminine endings, the caesura, using secondary stress, the addition of extra-metrical syllables, or the omission of syllables, the substitution of one foot for another.

    [edit] Examples
    The Gashlycrumb Tinies, a 1963 book by Edward Gorey, is written in strict 10-syllable lines consisting of three dactyls plus a final stressed syllable:
    A is for Amy who fell down the stairs
    B is for Basil assaulted by bears
    C is for Clara who wasted away
    D is for Desmond thrown out of a sleigh
    "She Walks in Beauty", an 1814 poem by Lord Byron, is written in strict iambic tetrameter:
    She walks in beauty, like the night
    Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
    And all that's best of dark and bright
    Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
    Thus mellow'd to that tender light
    Which heaven to gaudy day denies.
    One shade the more, one ray the less,
    Had half impair'd the nameless grace
    Which waves in every raven tress,
    Or softly lightens o'er her face;
    Where thoughts serenely sweet express
    How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.
    And on that cheek, and o'er that brow,
    So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
    The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
    But tell of days in goodness spent,
    A mind at peace with all below,
    A heart whose love is innocent!
  5. Torana

    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

    Mar 13, 2007
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    A quantitative property is one that exists in a range of magnitudes, and can therefore be measured. Measurements of any particular quantitative property are expressed as a specific quantity, referred to as a unit, multiplied by a number. Examples of physical quantities are distance, mass, and time. Many attributes in the social sciences, including abilities and personality traits, are also studied as quantitative properties and principles.

    Historical background

    [edit] The classical concept of quantity
    In classical terms, the structure quantitative property is such that different magnitudes of the quantity stand in relation to one another as ratios which, in turn, can be expressed as real numbers. Measurement is the determination or estimation of ratios of quantities. Quantity and measurement are therefore mutually defined: quantitative attributes are those which it is possible to measure, at least in principle. The classical concept of quantity can be traced back to John Wallis and Isaac Newton, and was foreshadowed in Euclid's Elements (Michell, 1993).

    [edit] The representational theory of measurement
    In the representational theory, measurement is regarded as "the correlation of numbers with entities that are not numbers" (Nagel, 1932). In some forms of representational theory, numbers are assigned on the basis of correspondences or similarities between the structure of number systems and the structure of qualitative systems. A quantitative property is therefore one for which such structural similarities can be established. In other forms of representational theory, such as that implicit within the work of Stanley Smith Stevens, numbers need only be assigned according to a rule. The rule may be a purely operational one such as the statement by an experimental subject of a number in response to a physical stimulus, or the assignment of a number to a statement in a Likert scale. Stevens proposed four levels of measurement.

    [edit] Fundamental considerations in quantitative research
    Whether numbers obtained through an experimental procedure are considered measurements is, on the one hand, largely a matter of how measurement is defined. On the other hand, the nature of the measurement process has important implications for scientific research. Firstly, many arithmeitic operations are only justified for measurements either in the classical sense described above, or in the sense of interval and ratio-level measurements as defined by Stevens (which arguably describe the same thing). Secondly, quantitative relationships between different properties which feature in most natural theories and laws imply that the properties have a specific type of quantitative structure; namely, the structure of a continuous quantity. The reason for this is that such theories and laws display a multiplicative structure (for example Newton's second law).

    Continuous quantities are those for which magnitudes can be represented as real numbers and for which, therefore, measurements can be expressed on a continuum. Continuous quantities may be scalar or vector quantities. For example, SI units are physical units of continuous quantitative properties, phenomena, and relations such as distance, mass, heat, force and angular separation. The classical concept of quantity described above necessarily implies the concept of continuous quantity.

    Recording observations with numbers does not, in itself, imply that an attribute is quantitative. For example, judges routinely assign numbers to properties such as the perceived beauty of an exercise (e.g. 1-10) without necessarily establishing quantitative structure in any sort of rigorous fashion. A researcher might also use the number 1 to mean "Susan", 2 to mean "Michael", and so on. This, however, is not a meaningful use of numbers: the researcher can arbitrarily reassign the numbers (so that 1 means "Michael" and 2 means "Susan") without losing any information. Put another way, facts about numbers (for example, that 2 is greater than 1, that 5 is two more than 3, and that 8 is twice 4) don't mean anything about the names corresponding to those numbers. A person's name is not, therefore, a quantitative property.

    Whether counts of objects or observations are considered measurements is also largely a matter of how measurement is defined. Again, though, an important consideration is the manner in which resulting numbers are used. Counts are not measurements of continuous quantities. If, for example, a researcher were to count the number of grains of sand in a specified volume of space on a beach, the result denumerates how many separate grains there are; i.e. the number of separate distinguishable entities of a specific type. Arithmetic operations, such as addition, have meaning only in this specific sense. For instance, combining 5 and 4 grains of sand gives 9 grains of sand. The numbers used in this case are therefore the natural numbers.

    Any object is characterized by many attributes, such as colour and mass, only some of which constitute continuous quantities. For example, the mass of a specific grain of sand is a continuous quantity whereas the grain, as an object, is not. Thus, the mass of a grain of sand can be used as a unit of mass because it is possible to estimate the ratio of the mass of another object to the mass of a grain of sand, given an appropriate instrument.

    In the social sciences, it is also common to count frequencies of observations; i.e. frequencies of observable outcomes in an experiment. Examples include the number of correct scores on an assessment of an ability, and the number of statements on a questionnaire endorsed by respondents. Provided each observable outcome is the manifestation of an underlying quantitative attribute, such frequencies will generally indicate relative magnitudes of that attribute. Strictly speaking, however, counts and frequencies do not constitute measurement in terms of a unit of continuous quantity.

    [edit] Use in prosody and poetry
    In prosody and poetic meter, syllable weight can be a governing principle. Many linguists use morae as a unit of syllable weight—a syllable with more morae is heavier than one with fewer morae. Commonly, syllables with naturally long vowels, diphthongs, and vowels followed by two or more consonants are said to be “heavy”, “long”, or “bimoraic”, whereas syllables with naturally short vowels, followed by only one or no consonant, are said to be “light”, “short”, or “monomoraic”. There is, however, considerable variation across the world's languages as to which coda-consonants contribute a mora to the syllable (i.e., make it heavy). At one end of the variation, only the length of the vowel determines syllable weight; at the other end each coda-consonant counts as one mora. Some languages use syllable weight in assigning word accent. Some poetic meters are based on the arrangement of heavy and light syllables.
  6. Sayso

    Sayso Contributing Member

    Jan 11, 2007
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    Crumbs Torana, you've been busy!

    Here's a link to a site I like to refer to for meter. It also goes into Sonnets and Villanelles.


    If it doesn't work as a link then copy and paste into the address box thingy.

    Best wishes.
  7. Torana

    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

    Mar 13, 2007
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    Sayso thanks for putting up a link that goes into sonnets and villanelles. Greatly appreciated :)


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