In Jennifer Lee Carrell's new book, "Interred With Their Bones," what is the correct pronounciation of the word "Interred"?I know this is a quote from "Julius Caesar,"...

In Jennifer Lee Carrell's new book, "Interred With Their Bones," what is the correct pronounciation of the word "Interred"?

I know this is a quote from "Julius Caesar," which I assume is written in iambic pentameter. That is why I want to know if "interred" has two or three syllables in its pronounciation.

Expert Answers
malibrarian eNotes educator| Certified Educator

That quote is from Mark Antony's funeral speech for Caesar, Act III, scene ii. The famous first line is very irregular - more prose than verse. The second line ("I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him.") sounds like it's going to be iambic pentameter, but has a weak (feminine) ending. The next line ("The evil that men do lives after them;") really sounds iambic pentameter, but one would probably not emphasize "that" - you would emphasize "men," which makes it irregular.

Then we have the line your quote is from - "The good is oft interred with their bones;". This sounds like regular iambic pentameter, which would lead me to say that "interred" needs to have three syllables...EXCEPT for the fact that it's the first regular line of iambic pentameter so far! Continuing on, I'm not seeing any further lines that jump out at me as being regular iambic pentameter, so I'd say it's pretty safe to use only two syllables for "interred."

Shakespeare did this mixing up of rhythm throughout his plays, particularly the middle to later plays (his early plays were nearly 100% verse). Quite often he used it in a scene where things are getting shaken up a bit, like Antony trying to rouse the people against the conspirators who killed Caesar.

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Julius Caesar

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