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William Recites Homer. Muses Dyspeptic.

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William Recites Homer. Muses Dyspeptic.

Postby annis » Thu Nov 03, 2005 1:20 am

At the suggestion of Bert in his capacity as pharr-c guide, I have produced a document explaining how one might go about reciting dactylic hexameters. I'm not sure this is quite what he had in mind. In any case, there's a bunch of text talking about likely stumbling blocks, but the PDF also has a bunch of links to MP3 files of me jabbering away.

Reciting the Heroic Hexameter.

There may yet be some fine tuning.

I beg listeners' indulgence at my vocal quality. The transition out of and into winter always leaves my voice a little rough.

WARNING ! WARNING ! WARNING

The mp3s contain the dread Reconstructed Pronunciation. Those modern Greeks who expect me to pretend that Homer talked like them will cry. So don't listen.

By way of penance, at the moment I'm listening to an Haris Alexiou album quite loud, Di' Efhon.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;
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Postby GlottalGreekGeek » Thu Nov 03, 2005 1:55 am

Sounds good, as far as demonstrating pronounciation and rhythm. Not exactly an "epic" recitation, but you never claimed to be trying to engage an audience with the story as an old rhapsode would.

EDIT : Could you combine all the MP3s into one flie so I could hear the flow from line to line?
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Postby annis » Thu Nov 03, 2005 2:58 am

GlottalGreekGeek wrote:EDIT : Could you combine all the MP3s into one flie so I could hear the flow from line to line?


I could, but for two reasons. Most importantly, I fear for my web server. It isn't attached to a pipe really sufficient for shunting sound files about. Several little files in place of one larger one will keep the people I share the machine with from sending me testy email. I can watch over the next few days to see how it goes. I may be overestimating the document's likely popularity. :)

Second, I take the hexameter to have a well-defined break at the end of the line. There's no metrical continuity between lines to hear, at least in how I do this.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;
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Postby GlottalGreekGeek » Thu Nov 03, 2005 3:01 am

I see. Yes, a month from now, once the word is out, I can see those little MP3s getting quite popular.
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Postby Bardo de Saldo » Thu Nov 03, 2005 3:28 am

I took this photo of Will's triumphal exit of the Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas in Madrid after his Homeric recitation there:

Image
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Postby elis » Wed Nov 09, 2005 6:25 pm

Those modern Greeks who expect me to pretend that Homer talked like them will cry. So don't listen.


This is weird, your takes sound a lot more natural and for some reason quite closer to the modern greek sound than the rest of the recitations I listened to - and I mean those that appear at the links of the aoidoi.org site.
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Re: -

Postby annis » Thu Nov 10, 2005 3:30 am

elis wrote:This is weird, your takes sound a lot more natural and for some reason quite closer to the modern greek sound than the rest of the recitations I listened to - and I mean those that appear at the links of the aoidoi.org site.


I tried to avoid recitation histrionics. :) That probably accounts for the "natural" sound.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;
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Postby Bardo de Saldo » Thu Dec 22, 2005 3:01 am

"Long vowels: a long vowel with a circumflex accent is pronounced as a high-falling pitch (not rise-fall), and a long vowel with an acute is low-rising." ~Will

I'm not sure if I understand you well. In a simplistic example, if your base tone is a C note, would circumflexes start with an E and end in a C (rather than start with a C, climb up to E and drop back to C)? Would acutes in long vowels start with a C and climb to an E (rather than start and end with an E)?

What about short vowels with an acute?

(If you don't find your photo funny, I'll delete it.)
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Postby annis » Thu Dec 22, 2005 1:10 pm

Bardo de Saldo wrote:I'm not sure if I understand you well. In a simplistic example, if your base tone is a C note, would circumflexes start with an E and end in a C (rather than start with a C, climb up to E and drop back to C)?


Yes.

Would acutes in long vowels start with a C and climb to an E (rather than start and end with an E)?


And yes.

What about short vowels with an acute?


Start and stay on E. Which informs my understanding of the circumflex somewhat: ά + ι > αῖ.

(If you don't find your photo funny, I'll delete it.)


Not at all! I'd forgotten about it, and it made me laugh all over again.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;
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Postby mfranks » Tue Apr 04, 2006 5:12 am

Bardo,

I found your photo post very funny - I laughed out loud (LOL)... thanks for the humor - it was awesome! :-)


Annis Wrote:
GlottalGreekGeek wrote:

EDIT : Could you combine all the MP3s into one flie so I could hear the flow from line to line?


I could, but for two reasons. Most importantly, I fear for my web server. It isn't attached to a pipe really sufficient for shunting sound files about. Several little files in place of one larger one will keep the people I share the machine with from sending me testy email. I can watch over the next few days to see how it goes. I may be overestimating the document's likely popularity.


Will,

Why not store a single MP3 and a copy of the text of your work here on this site? I would love it if they (TextKit) would store MP3's samples such as these and others on this site.

Pronunciation is so important to the study of language - especially for independant learners like most of us here. Is this not the mandate of this site to assist independent learners of Classical Greek and Latin? I'm surprised that there is no section dedicated to the correct pronunciation of Classical Latin & Greek on TextKit. Lingistic theory and phonetic descriptions are useful but can be rather hectic and confussing. Audio samples cuts to the chase - don't you think? I know the site is called "TextKit" but does that mean "text only " no audio? :)

BTW, I really enjoyed your recitation. Strangely, It reminded me of Native American languages such as Navaho - it was beautiful sounding to my ears.

Regards,

Mark
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Postby cantator » Fri Jun 02, 2006 9:40 am

annis wrote:
Bardo de Saldo wrote:I'm not sure if I understand you well. In a simplistic example, if your base tone is a C note, would circumflexes start with an E and end in a C (rather than start with a C, climb up to E and drop back to C)?


Yes.

Would acutes in long vowels start with a C and climb to an E (rather than start and end with an E)?


And yes.

What about short vowels with an acute?


Start and stay on E. Which informs my understanding of the circumflex somewhat...

[


Can you tell me why you selected the interval of a major third as the sounding interval ? Do we have any reference to the pitch intonations indicated by the accents ? If so, who/what should I be looking for ? I'd like to know more about the methods followed in recreating ancient Greek pronunciation.

I was taught that the circumflex represented a rise and fall in pitch. Guess I'll have to look into that assumption.

The use of modern musical intervals seems an arbitrary usage, but I hasten to add that I completely enjoyed your readings (especially the lack of histrionics).

Btw, is it your opinion that once a pitch is reached (via the accent) that the recitation continues at the new pitch level until another accent is received ? Or is there a central tone that is returned to after the accent ?
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Postby annis » Fri Jun 02, 2006 12:27 pm

cantator wrote:Can you tell me why you selected the interval of a major third as the sounding interval ?


I assume Bardo just picked that at random to ask a general question. The changes in pitch matter more than their exact interval.

Do we have any reference to the pitch intonations indicated by the accents ? If so, who/what should I be looking for ? I'd like to know more about the methods followed in recreating ancient Greek pronunciation.


The best reference for all these questions is the book Vox Graeca, by Sidney Allen.

I was taught that the circumflex represented a rise and fall in pitch. Guess I'll have to look into that assumption.


Well there's not complete agreement on this, some thinking it's a falling pitch, some a rise-and-fall. The former seems most likely to me, so I use that.

The use of modern musical intervals seems an arbitrary usage,


That's just a way to discuss the question. I certainly haven't tried to match my pitch contours to particular intervals.

Btw, is it your opinion that once a pitch is reached (via the accent) that the recitation continues at the new pitch level until another accent is received ? Or is there a central tone that is returned to after the accent ?


It is probable that the acute is distinguished not by the pitch of syllables before it, but by the lowered pitch of the following syllable (I'm sorry, but I can't dredge up the reference for this right now). So there's a baseline above which acute and circumflex do their work (which baseline is actually a pitch arc over the course of an entire phrase).

The many papers of A. M. Devine and L. D. Stephens cover all these questions, though these are fiercely technical.
William S. Annis — http://www.aoidoi.org/http://www.scholiastae.org/
τίς πατέρ' αἰνήσει εἰ μὴ κακοδαίμονες υἱοί;
annis
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