Excerpt from What Was Ictus in Latin Prosody?
We have already recognized two senses in which the word accent is used. Both, while radically different, have at least this much in common: The 'accented' syllable is the one made prominent in some way in oral utterance.1 When the... word is spoken, that syllable stands out conspicuous, either by virtue of its stress, i. E. A definite expulsory effort of the lungs, or by virtue of its pitch. To these two varieties of an accented syllable, i. E. A syllable standing out prominently in an uttered word, - to these two conceptions, I ask, may we not add a third? May not a syllable be primarily prominent by virtue of its quantity? That is, in a word like amdvz't', for example, may not the rule of the grammarians, that such a word was accented on the penult, simply mean that they felt the quantity of the long penult as making that syllable prominent, without any stress on the one hand or any elevation of pitch on the other? And in words like ldtuz't, lzo'mz'nes, etc., may not the rule that these words were accented on the antepenult simply mean that, in consequence of the short penult, that syllable did not possess any prominence, and hence, after the establishment in Latin of the three-syllable law, the syllable next preceding became the conspicuous one?
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