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THE COMPOSITION OF
GREEK IAMBIC VERSE,
WITH A TREATISE ON THE
DRAMATIC TRAGIC METRICAL SYSTEMS,
THE IAMBIC METRE,
AN OUTLINE OF ATTIC PROSODY.
THE REV. B. W. BEATSON, M.A.
FELLOW OF PEMBROKE COLLEGE, CAMBRIDGE.
FOR THE USE OF THE KING'S SCHOOL, CANTERBURY.
CAMBRIDGE: W. P. GRANT.
LONDON: WHITTAKER & CO.; AND SIMPKIN & CO.
LATELY PUBLISHED BY W. P. GRANT, CAMBRIDGE.
BY THE SAME AUTHOR.
SECOND EDITION. Price 2s. 6d. WITH A COPIOUS TREATISE ON ACCENTUATION PREFIXED, EXERCISES ON GREEK PROSE COMPOSITION; Consisting of Translations from the most approved Greek Authors, for Re-translation; the passages being selected, so as to comprehend much valuable information on Grecian Affairs.
Suhjoined are numerous Notes, explaining the Constructions to be adopted, and pointing out distinctions between Greek words of the same general meaning: presenting, also, Useful Hints for Translation into English, and suggesting reflections on the matter of the extract, so as to excite thought and investigation on the part of the Youthful Reader.
Price 4s. 6d. EXERCISES ON LATIN PROSE COMPOSITION ; Consisting of Interesting and Instructive Passages, translated from Eminent Latin Authors, for Re-translation; with Copious Notes on the Constructions and
To which are subjoined, HINTS FOR THE COMPOSITION OF THEMES ; Illustrated by about Thirty Examples of Themes ; and concluding with a
Collection of Theses.
13 JAN 1928
THE PIRST EDITION
This little Work was originally intended for private distribution among the Pupils of the King's School, Canterbury ; but as several Gentlemen engaged in tuition thought it adapted to more extensive circulation, it is now offered to the Public. It commences with a brief explanation of the laws of the Iambic Metre as employed in Greek Tragedy, and a statement of the Rules of Prosody according to the usage of the Greek Tragedians. Originality was evidently precluded; and nothing has been attempted beyond perspicuity, and copiousness of illustration by numerous examples. For information on the quantity of radical syllables, or other syllables to which the remarks do not apply, the Student must seek in a Prosodiacal Lexicon, or in the Indexes of Beck to Euripides, and those in imitation of Beck to Æschylus and Sophocles. These last will be found to offer many advantages to a beginner. They will lay before him the Attic usages of Tragedy, distinct and free from intermixture with Epic, Lyric, or Comic peculiarities of construction and quantity, which, in a general Prosodiacal Lexicon to the whole body of Greek poetry of every age and of every style, will be continually ensnaring him. They will suggest to him those epithets alone which the Tragic stage admits, instead of a promiscuous collection, drawn in great part from poets of styles too enthusiastic, and too little assimi. lated to the language of life and business, to harmonize with the sober tone of Attic Tragedy. They will enable him to ascertain what tenses and what moods of tenses enter into
point of great importance to correctness ; as few verbs have both the passive aorists, or both the active perfects ; many have no active future; and some have no
tenses beside the , present and the imperfect ;-and when a tense is found, it is sometimes confined to a particular mood, or to the singular number. Upon particles and conjunctions, the multitude of examples that they concentrate is a most effective illustration of such distinctions as those between un and oŮ, and of the connection of particles with moods. And it is no light advantage in the use of them, that the absence of phrases and synonyms removes a continual temptation to indolence and thoughtlessness, and compels the composer to exercise his own judgment, and depend on his own memory. The least part of their utility is the determination of quantity ; for but a small proportion of syllables remains doubtful, after that the remarks in the sketch of prosody here given have been applied to them.
To the remarks on metre and prosody succeed the examples ; beginning with single lines, and proceeding to entire passages, all literally translated from Greek, with a few necessary alterations in the single lines, when they had been extracted from other sources than the writers of tragedy. The words in italics have no corresponding words in the originals, but were supplied to complete the sense in the English : these should be omitted in re-translation. One or more words connected by the hyphen are to be rendered by a single Greek word. Constructions not immediately suggested by the English are pointed out in short notes at the foot of the page, the first time they occur. These assistances decrease in frequency as the work advances. Great care has been taken to prevent students being impeded or discouraged by errors of the press. Errors of other kinds have been repressed with vigilance and diligence : and it is hoped that this little book will be found an easy introduction to a branch of classical literature which is day by day attracting more attention.
In this Second Edition, advantage has been taken of the kind suggestions communicated to the Publisher from various quarters, by Gentlemen who have used the work in preparing Students for the Universities. To facilitate the first attempts, when the
very flow of the metre is not yet familiar, four leaves have been inserted, in which the Greek words to be employed are given in their uninflected state, on the right page. To the single lines, in which this assistance is withdrawn, are subjoined detached sentences, which will exemplify the management of particles and connections before the student enters upon the collection of entire passages. Additions have also been made to these longer extracts. Students who find their Greek Vocabulary scanty, or who are imperfectly acquainted with the laws regulating the moods, or inexperienced in the combination of clauses into sentences, and of sentences with each other,
may advantageously employ some time on the composition of Greek Prose ; thus mastering the difficulties of structure alone, before encountering these united with those of Metre. When the transition is made from these prepared exercises to translation out of original English Dramatists, the student's first efforts will often be directed with more satisfaction to modern authors, rather than to Shakspeare immediately. The plays of Dryden, the Agamemnon and Sophonisba of Thomson, the Fair Penitent, Cato, and Douglas, will offer passages of more uninterrupted perspicuity than can easily be found in the Elizabethan Dramatists, and containing fewer allusions to feudal times and feelings, and fewer sentiments or expressions in utter contrast to all one's classical associations, such as appear to a beginner so hopelessly irreducible to the Grecian standard. Those acquainted with the French language will meet in the tragedies of Corneille and Racine with many ρήσεις αγγελικαι– such as,
, the combat of the Horatii, the death of Hippolytus, the assassination of Pompey,—that will fall very easily into Greek. Encouraged by success in such attempts, the composer will come to the final encounter with Shakspeare in better heart, and with more skill at his weapons.