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dactylic Syllabification: dac·tyl·ic
Pronunciation: /dakˈtilik/

Definition of dactylic in English:


Of or using dactyls: dactylic rhythm
More example sentences
  • Metrically, his hexameter shows similar developments to Callimachus’ and Theocritus ’, and dactylic rhythm is more predominant than in Homer.
  • But the repetition of ‘call to me’ in its dactylic form makes a continuous anapaestic reading impossible, and the stress dactyls in the following lines makes it clearly inappropriate.
  • They sing their tales, including the rape of Proserpina, in dactylic pentameter, as does Orpheus when he charms the king and queen of Hades with his appeal to retrieve Eurydice.


(usually dactylics) Back to top  
Dactylic verse.
Example sentences
  • He thereby lends some countenance to Saintsbury's later mantra that what passes for English dactylics are in fact ‘tipped-up’ hypermetric anapests.
  • Johnston speculates that Gillray must have had inside information, as otherwise ‘he would have been unlikely to know about Coleridge's dactylics.’


Late 16th century: via Latin from Greek daktulikos, from daktulos, literally 'finger' (see dactyl).

Words that rhyme with dactylic

acrylic, bibliophilic, Cyrillic, exilic, idyllic, imbecilic
Definition of dactylic in:
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