Any number of other choriambic
adjectives or participles, typical of hexameter enjambment, could have been used as connecting links, for example, athanaton (used at Theogony 942 of Dionysus), which would add emphasis to his divine nature, or, proleptically, kissokomen (used at Homeric Hymn 26.1 of Dionysus), thereby prefiguring his later characterization in myth and cult; either of these adjectives would relate to the story of Dionysus.
Among the many other notably difficult and unusual elisions which occur in the Sermones, Nilsson makes a special study of: the elision of pyrrhic words ending in -m, -a, or -o (six of 10 examples in Book 2 occur in 2.3); the elision of anapaestic words (12 of 16 instances in Book 2 occur in 2.3; cf lines81 and 83 of the passage quoted above); the elision of dactylic words ending in -m or -a (five of six total examples in Book 2 are in 2.3); the elision of iambic words, and the extremely rare elision of choriambic
words (2.3 has four of six examples in Book 2, cf.
(For example, choriambic
dimeter has the form - U U - | U - U - ; glyconic takes the form UUU | - U U - | U - .)
A published poet of some accomplishment printed a couplet of Pope's in this form: "The spider's touch, how exquisitely fine;/It feels each thread, and lives along the line." But Pope wrote "how exquisitely fine!/Feels at each thread, and lives along the line." It is the choriambic
movement that enacts the fineness of the touch.
von Goethe's Pandora (which is written in choriambic
dimeter) and in Algernon Charles Swinburne's Choriambics
In Catullus this pattern is the result of the second foot, a "choriamb." (15) The first way of approaching the meter is interesting because Hopkins will later take it up under the name "counterpoint," but the second is more relevant to Tennyson because the Latin meter is largely defined by its second foot, the choriambic
It consists either of the aeolic pattern | UUU U- - U | - U U - in which four variable syllables precede the choriambic
nucleus (- U U -) and create what is called choriambic
dimeter, or the same pattern lacking the final syllable (catalectic).
He notes Tennyson's innovative incorporation of the Greek choriambic
(/u u/) into his alcaics in "The Daisy," marks Tennyson's invention of a new meter in "To the Master of Balliol" (the prefatory poem to "The Death of Oenone"), and usefully situates Tennyson's experimentation with alcaics in an English tradition encompassing Mary Herbert, Countess of Pembroke, Marvell, Milton, and Clough.