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[I-on-ik]

A Greek metrical foot consisting of two long syllables followed by two short syllables (known as the greater ionic or ionic a majore) or of two short syllables followed by two long syllables (the lesser ionic or ionic a minore). Associated with the early religious verse of the Ionians in Asia Minor (now Turkey), the metre was used by several Greek lyric poets, by the dramatist Euripides, and in Latin by Horace. It is hardly ever found in English as the basis for whole lines: the Epilogue to Robert Browning's Asolando (1889) provides a rare example of the lesser ionic metre adapted to English stresses:At the midnight in the silence of the sleep-time

Subjects: Literature.


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