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SCANSION the short version

Stress in Latin Words



If the penult is a short syllable, the stress is on the antepenult. So FACere, not facERe
If the penult is long, that pulls the accent to the penult. So habEtur, not HABetur.

Finding the long vowels
Vowels can be long by diphthong, position, or nature
Nature it just is long
diphthong Ae, oe, au, etc.
Position vowel + 2 consonants = long
X = 2
qu, ph, th, and ch = 1
(b,c,d,g,p, or t) + (l or r) = wild card, 2 OR 1

Scanning Dactylic hexameter
X = Syllaba anceps

Elision

Latin Poetry How to read it
Stress in Latin Words
There are 3 important syllables
ultima = last, from 'syllaba ultima' last syllable
penult = from 'paene ultima' meaning 'almost last (syllable) '
antepenult = from 'ante paene ultima' meaning 'before the almost last (syllable)'
Like many things in life, it sounds a lot more impressive if you leave it in Latin.
Stress is recessive that means it sits as far from the Ultima as it can get. The Ultima,
apparently, has very bad body odor, being the backside of the word.
If the penult is a short syllable, the stress is on the antepenult. So FACere, not facERe
If the penult is long, that pulls the accent to the penult. So habEtur, not HABetur.

Finding the long vowels
Vowels can be long by diphthong, position, or nature
Nature it just is long, like the feminine ablative singular
diphthong you smush two vowels together to get a whole new vowel. Ae, oe, au, etc.
Position any vowel followed by two consonants is generally long. There are details.
X counts as two consonants because it kind of is: k + s = x
In words taken from Greek, Latin uses two consonants to mimic the original Greek
letter. This means that things like ph, th, and ch count as one.
As in English, q always has a u after it, but qu counts as a single consonant, and the u is
not a vowel.
Occasionally some letters (mutes b,c,d,g,p, or t) followed by l or r can go both ways,
either as a 2 or 1. So, for instance, the a in Macro can be either long or short,
depending.

Scanning Dactylic hexameter
This is the meter of epic, and to keep it from getting boring for lines and lines and lines, some feet can
be substituted for others so -

X = the syllaba anceps, or 'dubious syllable' nobody cares how long the last syllable is.
Elision
Vowels smush together between words, and M cant stop them. So when theres a vowel (or um/ am) at
the end of a word and at the beginning, lose the first vowel. For est drop the e and make -st.