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Every one knows the difference between verse and prose in his native language; nor does he need the aid of prosody to enable him to read or to repeat verse according to its just rhythm. It is the business of the poet so to arrange his words as that, repeated in their accustomed measures they shall strike the ear with that regular rhythm which constitutes


It is for foreigners principally that Prosody is necessary; not knowing the accustomed measures of words, they require the aid of rules to teach them those measures and to enable them to read verse so as to make themselves or others sensible of its music. I suppose that the system of rules or excep tions which constitutes Greek and Latin prosody, as shown with us, was unknown to those nations, and that it has been invented by the moderns to whom those languages were foreign. I do not mean to affirm this, however, because you have not searched into the history of this art, nor am I at present in a situation which admits of that search. By industrious examination of the Greek and Latin verse it has been found that pronouncing certain combinations of vowels and consonants long, and

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