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1. Prosody a metrical foot of three syllables, one long followed by two short (— ⌣ ⌣)
2. Zoology any digit of a vertebrate


(dak -tăl) See Ida.



in syllabotonic versification (including Russian), a three-syllable foot in which the stress falls on the first syllable (- - -). An example of the dactyl in Russian verse is

Tuchkĭ nĕ/ besny̆ĕ,/ vechny̆ĕ/ strannĭkĭ!

Step’i͝u la,/ zurnǒi ̆u,/ tsep’i͝u zhĕm/ chuzhnǒi͝u . ..


In ancient metrics the dactyl was a three-syllable foot with a duration of four morae made up of one long syllable and two short syllables (---).

References in periodicals archive ?
The highest number of feminine and dactylic endings, above 50 percent of the lines, occurs in Ford's two later plays, The Broken Heart and Perkin Warbeck, and the lowest number--in 'Tis Pity She's a Whore: only 15.
8) Such continuous repetition (monotonicity) of masculine, feminine, and (rarely) dactylic rhyme endings becomes a means of strengthening the expressive and musical effect of a poem in Russian Romantic and neo-Romantic poetry (Fet, Bal'mont).
At Delphi, the [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] interprets the fragmentary message uttered by the divine seer into dactylic hexameter as an ambiguous response, (59) which in turn has to be further interpreted by whoever asked the oracle for help.
This translation adheres to dactylic hexameter, bringing forward the rhythm of the ancient poetry; and Johnston has chosen clear and simple language to further the experience of the original's powerful simplicity.
This fascination with constraint is not limited to the content of the poems: "hello, birdy" is also formally constrained by a modified dactylic meter, a waltz time also evident in "air" ("they scream my lieutenant he calls it a song / I want them to sing he says louder") and "kedge" (following a tongue-in-cheek "can we start again").
But because he is speaking within an epic poem--in other words, because the narrator of the outer story is singing an epic poem--then Odysseus within that song has to also be singing (in the poem's meter, dactylic hexameter), with the result that a merger happens between the performer of the Odyssey as a whole and the character who speaks in first person within the poem.
Keeping in mind the connections between the Greek daimones and the Orphic theogonies, I suggest the reference to smaragdi here point to another Dactylic story.
Flamenco Hips opens with the double sonnet "Half and Half," two fourteen line stanzas with syllabically spare half-lines that hold to a poetic rhythm of five or six beats, using trochaic and dactylic metrical feet of a harder stress that precedes either one or two lighter stresses.
Publius Ovidius Naso, known to us as Ovid, finished his famous epic in dactylic hexameters in AD 8.
And sure, I allowed, some poems had what we called meter, which I'd learned to categorize in groups called iambic (for the making of a sonnet), trochaic (best if I was feeling forceful), spondaic (strictly for shouting), or dactylic (great for the bawdy or dirty-minded), among others.
The verse form that evolved to narrate Greek epic poetry is the dactylic hexameter: five dactyls, for which a spondee may substitute, and a final spondee or trochee in the last foot.
1) For a full account of the discussion of metre and rhyme (iambic pentameter, trochaic, dactylic, Sara Thorne Mastering Poetry (2006) is a very useful source.