Extended A-Verses in Middle English Alliterative Poetry. Medieval English Measures: Studies in Metre and Versification. Ed. Ruth Kennedy.
This article addresses the appropriate description of the metrical structure of a-verses which appear to have more than two ictus positions, arguing that unlike the strict metrical rules governing the verse design of b-verses, only normative rules can be said to govern the verse design of a-verses. Analysis of two large computerized metrical/syntactic corpora shows that a-verses with three metrical stresses occur in all the poems and demonstrates that the rules of stress assignment and alliterative patterning are the same as those the author established in earlier studies determining the structure of b-verses. [HND]