previous next
[24] This, however, occurs far more frequently in Greek words such as Atrei, which in our young days was pronounced by the most learned of our elders with an acute accent on the first syllable, necessitating a grave accent on the second; the same remark applies to Nerei and Terei. Such has been the tradition as regards accents.1 [p. 91]

1 The Roman accent was a stress, while the Greek was a pitch accent, though by the Christian era tending to change into stress. Roman grammarians borrow the Greek terminology and speak of accents in terms of pitch. The explanation of this is probably that the Roman stress accent was accompanied by an elevation of the pitch. Here the acute accent certainly implies stress; the grave implies a drop in pitch and the absence of stress. The circumflex means that the voice rises slightly and then falls slightly, but implies stress. See Lindsay, Latin Language, pp. 148–153.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Introduction (Harold Edgeworth Butler, 1920)
load focus Latin (Harold Edgeworth Butler, 1920)
hide References (1 total)
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (1):
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: