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Lacking one or more syllables, especially in the final foot. Used of verse.

[Late Latin catalēcticus, from Greek katalēktikos, from katalēgein, to leave off : kata-, intensive pref.; see cata- + lēgein, to cease, terminate; see slēg- in Indo-European roots.]


(Poetry) prosody (of a line of verse) having an incomplete final foot
[C16: via Late Latin from Greek katalēktikos incomplete, from katalēgein, from kata- off + lēgein to stop]


(ˌkæt lˈɛk tɪk)
1. (of a line of verse) lacking part of the last foot.
2. a catalectic line of verse.
[1580–90; < Late Latin catalēcticus < Greek katalēktikós incomplete <katalḗg(ein) to leave off]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.catalectic - (prosody) a line of verse that lacks a syllable in the last metrical foot
metrics, prosody - the study of poetic meter and the art of versification
line of poetry, line of verse - a single line of words in a poem
Adj.1.catalectic - (verse) metrically incomplete; especially lacking one or more syllables in the final metrical foot
acatalectic - (verse) metrically complete; especially having the full number of syllables in the final metrical foot
hypercatalectic - (verse) having an extra syllable or syllables at the end of a metrically complete verse or in a metrical foot