There are two types of metrical feet: bounded feet (binary) and unbounded feet (n-ary). Bounded feet contain at most two syllables and unbounded ones may contain an indefinite number of syllables. Within feet, one of the syllables is dominant, i.e. the head which can be at the left-edge or the right-edge of the foot. Languages may vary as to whether bounded or unbounded feet are used and may vary w.r.t. direction of dominance. Bounded/unbounded and direction of dominance are considered to be two parameters of stress systems and combine freely. The way feet are represented depends on the framework used (cf. grids or trees). In a tree framework feet are represented as in (i) where heads are labeled Strong and non-heads Weak.
(i) Unbounded: Bounded: F F / \ / \ s \ / s / \ \ / / \ s \ \ / / s F F / \ \ \ / / / \ / \ / \ s w w ..w w...w w s s w w s left-dom. right-dom. left-dom. right-dom.
In a framework with bracketed grids feet could be represented as in (ii).
(ii) Unbounded: Bounded: * * * * (* * * * * *) (* * * * * *) (* *) (* *) left-dom. right-dom. left-dom. right-dom.
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