• WordNet 3.6
    • adj dactylic of or consisting of dactyls "dactylic meter"
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Dactylic A line consisting chiefly or wholly of dactyls; as, these lines are dactylics .
    • Dactylic Dactylic meters.
    • a Dactylic dăk*tĭl"ĭk Pertaining to, consisting chiefly or wholly of, dactyls; as, dactylic verses.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • dactylic In prosody, constituting or equivalent to a dactyl; pertaining to or characteristic of a dactyl or dactyls; consisting of dactyls: as, a dactylic foot; a dactylic spondee; dactylic rhythm or meter; dactylic verses. The dactylic rhythm in classical poetry was regarded as especially majestic and dignified; a continuous sequence of dactyls, however, produced a relatively lighter and more animated effect, an admixture of spondees giving a more or less heavy or retarded movement to the verse. The most frequent dactylic meter is the hexameter. Other dactylic meters were used in Greek lyric poetry, and in the drama, especially in the earlier period, or in passages expressing lamentation (monodies and commatia). See hexameter and elegiac.
    • n dactylic A line consisting chiefly or wholly of dactyls.
    • n dactylic plural Meters which consist of a repetition of dactyls or of equivalent feet.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adjs Dactylic relating to or consisting chiefly of dactyls
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. dactylicus, Gr. daktyliko`s, fr. da`ktylos
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. dactylus—Gr. daktylos, a finger.


In literature:

This young Bosinney" (he made the word a dactyl in opposition to general usage of a short o) "has got nothing.
"The Forsyte Saga, Volume I." by John Galsworthy
The metre of the song is dactylic; the accents being on the 1st, 4th, 7th, and 10th syllables.
"The Lady of the Lake" by Sir Walter Scott
This young Bosinney" (he made the word a dactyl in opposition to general usage of a short o) "has got nothing.
"The Forsyte Saga, Complete" by John Galsworthy
In the late spring (April 27th) also, he wrote the short dactylic lyric, 'Ben Karshook's Wisdom.
"Life of Robert Browning" by William Sharp
In all kinds of iambic verse the old Romans freely introduced spondees where the Greeks used iambi; so in hexameters spondees for dactyls.
"Cato Maior de Senectute" by Marcus Tullius Cicero
Yis, sir, 'polyp' and 'dactyl' and th' whole rist av thim.
"Mike Flannery On Duty and Off" by Ellis Parker Butler
The Dactylic Hexameter, or Heroic Verse, consists theoretically of six dactyls.
"New Latin Grammar" by Charles E. Bennett
That is, if he ever was an infant, and called for his bottle in dactylic hexameter.
"Winning His "W"" by Everett Titsworth Tomlinson
How long ago it seems, that spring noonshine when two young men (we will call them Dactyl and Spondee) set off to plunder the golden bag of Time.
"Pipefuls" by Christopher Morley
Who could be bothered with dactyls and spondees when goal-posts and touch-lines were far more to the point?
"The Fifth Form at Saint Dominic's" by Talbot Baines Reed
For example, "The Merchant of Venice" is in iambic pentameter, and "The Courtship of Miles Standish" is in dactylic hexameter.
"English: Composition and Literature" by W. F. (William Franklin) Webster
A dactyl is a foot of three syllables, as Ang{e}l{u}s, an angel, pOrc{u}l{u}s, a little pig.
"The Comic Latin Grammar" by Percival Leigh
The general anapaestic or dactylic rhythm is much disturbed by the iambic fourth line of the first stanza.
"Writings in the United Amateur, 1915-1922" by Howard Phillips Lovecraft
Why it should be pronounced Namunu, dactylically, I cannot see, but so I have always heard it.
"The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 14 (of 25)" by Robert Louis Stevenson
DUBOIS, R.: 1892, Anatomie et Physiologie Comparees de la Pholade Dactyle.
"The Nature of Animal Light" by E. Newton Harvey
A final dactyl, requiring an elision to make it fit its place, appears to me very odious.
"Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 60, No. 372, October 1846" by Various
Young gentlemen, there's a capital start on a fine, sonorous line, dactylic hexameter.
"From School to Battle-field" by Charles King
The four other feet may be either spondees or dactyls.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 13, Slice 4" by Various
Quite distinct was the Idaean Hercules, a Cretan Dactyl connected with the cult of Rhea or Cybele.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 13, Slice 3" by Various
After the dactylic hexameter, the iambic trimeter was the most popular metre of ancient Greece.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 14, Slice 2" by Various

In poetry:

The epic roll of the furrow
Flung from the writing plow,
The dactyl phrase of the green-rowed maize
Measured the music of Now.
"The Poet's Town" by John Gneisenau Neihardt

In news:

Tuberculous dactylitis ( spina ventosa) secondary to pulmonary tuberculosis.