or an·a·paest

[ an-uh-pest ]
/ ˈæn əˌpɛst /

noun Prosody.

a foot of three syllables, two short followed by one long in quantitative meter, and two unstressed followed by one stressed in accentual meter, as in for the nonce.

Origin of anapest

1580–90; < Latin anapaestus < Greek anápaistos struck back, reversed (as compared with a dactyl), equivalent to ana- ana- + pais- (variant stem of paíein to strike) + -tos past participle suffix


an·a·pes·tic, an·a·paes·tic, adjectivean·a·pes·ti·cal·ly, an·a·paes·ti·cal·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for anapaest

British Dictionary definitions for anapaest



/ (ˈænəpɛst, -piːst) /


prosody a metrical foot of three syllables, the first two short, the last long (◡ ◡ –)

Derived forms of anapaest

anapaestic or anapestic, adjective

Word Origin for anapaest

C17: via Latin from Greek anapaistos reversed (that is, a dactyl reversed), from anapaiein, from ana- back + paiein to strike
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012