chapter  32
5 Pages


The case in meter that a vowel or syllable needs to be syncopated in order to fit the meter. This happens frequently in English and is indicated by an apostrophe. In Latin meter unstressed vowels, and in one very specific context the following consonant as well, often need to be dropped. There are two processes: elision and synizesis. Elision is the deletion of a word-final vowel when immediately followed by a vowel in the next word. This can be schematically illustrated as follows where signifies a word boundary and a superscript letter with a line through it indicates it is not pronounced. It is normal to write elided syllables and not use an apostrophe as does English and imperative to emphasize that elision occurs only when needed. Synizesis is the deletion of a vowel followed directly by another vowel inside of the same word. As with elision, synizesis does not apply every time the context for it is satisfied.