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126                             OR THOMBTR Y.
This foot may be repeated, and the following line will show to what extent:
In Milton we have such a line as this :
Rocks, caves, lakes, fens, bogs, dens, and shades of death.
in which the first six syllables are all long, though the even ones alone bear the metrical accent. Such instances merely demonstrate that the mea­sure of a poem cannot be gathered from isolated verses, but is fixed by the prevalent foot throughout, and that in poems extending to thousands of lines, such exceedingly licentiate verses form a pleasing break to the monotony rather than a blemish.
The iambic verse admits likewise the trochee, but not in such abundance. Pope, who furnishes all the examples here given from a poem of 260 lines, has not, in that compass, any trochaic foot except in the beginning of a verse. For such ex­amples we must turn to a poem of a different struc­ture, and to a greater master of poetical numbers. Any foot of the heroic verse may be a trochee, except the last, e.g. :






E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III