Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics

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(1,939 words)


This article surveys tmesis, the separation of preverb and verbal stem, in epic Greek, and looks at both its function in epic diction and its historical linguistic background.

1. Definition and Synchronic Description

Tmesis is the separation of a preverb from its host verb, commonly found in Homer and in the later epic dialect (Epic Diction). Consider the following example:

tòn kaı̀ Mēriónēs próteros pròs mûthon éeipe

‘him Meriones addressed f…

Cite this page
Dag Haug, “Tmesis”, in: Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics, Managing Editors Online Edition: First Last. Consulted online on 28 November 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2214-448X_eagll_COM_00000351>
First published online: 2013

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