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The caesura ( Latin caesura `` Schnit ' ') is a cut in the verse resulting from a word boundary . If the incision falls between two feet or meters , it is called a diheresis . Sometimes incisions are differentiated in this respect, so an incision is only referred to as a caesura if it is inside a meter, but caesura is often also used as a more general term, the diheresis is then a special form of caesura.

The parts of the verse resulting from the caesura are called kola . According to the names of the cadence , the caesura is masculine or blunt after an uplift , feminine or sounding after a downward movement . Occasionally the feminine caesura is also called epic caesura . A caesura required by meter, which hits the fugue of a compound , is called Caesura latens ("hidden caesura").

Caesuras and dihereses in the narrower sense are those that are required by the meter at a fixed position in the verse. Such verse forms are also called caesura verse . Examples are the iambic trimeter , hexameter and pentameter in ancient, alexandrine and verse commun and in Romanesque poetry. Such a caesura or diheresis required by the meter is also called an incision , especially the diheresis in the pentameter. The opposite of a required incision, i.e. an inadmissible or undesired end of a word at a certain position is called a bridge .

In Germanic poetry, the caesura appears regularly in the long line and in modern reproductions of ancient verse forms.

The following caesuras are of particular importance with the ancient forms and especially with the hexameter:

In metric notation , the caesura is represented by a vertical double line (‖), sometimes also by a single line (|).

As an example, an Alexandrian by Andreas Gryphius :

You see wherever you see, only vanity on earth.

If the caesura border is additionally emphasized by rhyme , one speaks of caesura rhyme . The verse before the caesura can rhyme with the dispatch (in rhyme ) or the verse before the caesura in successive verses ( middle rhyme ). Examples can be found in the Leonine hexameter and in the verse and verse of the Nibelungen strophe . A baroque example from Friedrich Spee :

Bey quiet night  ‖ at the first wake up
One agrees to complain.
I nam in eight  ‖ what she says ;
That strike with eyes.

Generally speaking, a caesura is any kind of (artistically motivated) incision in a literary work, but also in cinematic works and works of sequential art , for example an interruption of the narrative flow in a novel or a black screen in a film.


Web links

Wiktionary: caesura  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. According to Andreas Heusler, the border between the half lines is not regarded as a caesura, but as a verse border .
  2. Andreas Gryphius It's all vain (1637)
  3. Friedrich Spee: Trawr-Gesang von der Noth Christi am Oelberg in the garden (1649)