Words, phrases, and acronyms specific to the study of linguistics.

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What's the term for the use of “this” in “there's this guy called John, who…”?

What's the term for the use of "this" in "there's this guy called John, who..."? Here, the "this" is used like an "a", not literally "this". I'm not sure if there's a term for this.
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37 views

What's the linguistic term for the process of turning a noun to article+[measure word]+noun?

What's the linguistic term for the process of turning a to ' + [measure word] + ' (<> indicates necessary element, and [] optional) in general? What I mean is for example English: apple -> an ...
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2answers
70 views

The drop/weakening of “h” sound in General American English

I noticed that the speakers with the General American accent occasionally weaken the "h" sound in words like "had" e.g. "You had this and that." becomes kind of like "You ad this and that." (I can't ...
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1answer
43 views

Adjunct vs disjunct [closed]

What is the difference between an adjunct and disjunct? How can I distinguish between the two? Please, I will be very thankful if you give me some examples.
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56 views

Sociolinguistics VS Rhetoric

Can anyone tell me major differences between rhetoric and sociolinguistics? And what theoretical commonalities they share? I'm a rhetoric student, and I'm looking to go to grad school, but I'm not ...
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35 views

Is there a word for artificial language except programming languages?

Is there a word for artificial language except programming languages? Non-natural languages for human-to-human communication?
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57 views

Is a letter a linguistic unit?

According to vocabulary.com a linguistic unit is one of the natural units into which linguistic messages can be analyzed. So, can a linguistic unit be a letter, a syllable, a word or a sentence? ...
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29 views

What is the difference between a nominal clause and a noun clause?

Could you tell me what the difference between nominal clause and noun clause is ? Provide it with concrete examples.
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1answer
31 views

Scopal relation of negation and quantifier

What is the exact meaning of scope? In the following sentence, what is the scopal relation of negation and quantifier? And how could I know if there is a wide or narrow scope between them? She ...
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1answer
78 views

Are British and American English two different dialects?

I'm facing a difficulty in understanding what exactly is a dialect. I've read many definitions, but I need an example in order to understand them. Can we say that British English and American English ...
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35 views

What motivated the definition of Theme in Semantics?

Source: An Introduction to Language (10 ed, 2014) by V Fromkin, R Rodman, N Hyams [p 163:] The NP arguments in the VP, which include the subject and any objects, are semantically related in ...
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1answer
50 views

Is there a word for variety of letters used in a language?

To suggest either/both readability or efficiency in typing? English is less [is there a term to fill in here?] than Japanese: compared to English alphabets, the number of letters in hiragana + ...
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1answer
27 views

Why is C-selection called 'subcategorisation' and not only 'categorisation'?

Source: p 94, An Introduction to Language (10 ed, 2014) by V Fromkin, R Rodman, N Hyams The information about the complement types selected by particular verbs and other lexical items is ...
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69 views

What do Determiners determine? [closed]

Source: An Introduction to Language (10 ed, 2014) by V Fromkin, R Rodman, N Hyams [p 86:] For example, determiners specify whether a noun is indefi- nite or definite (a boy versus the boy), or ...
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97 views

The barrier of intuitively using a second language’s word order

I am learning German and a big hurdle I am facing is word placement. For example, the last half of a sentence is: […], aber ich werde es nicht verstehen. (but I would not understand it.) I ...
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1answer
42 views

In the context of 'case', what does 'grammatical' mean in 'grammatical relation of a noun in a sentence'?

My question concerns only p 48: what does grammatical mean? Its use does not appear to match any of the definitions of 'grammar' below. I know of the distinctions between Descriptive, Prescriptive, ...
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59 views

How is the English noun 'system' a 'base'?

Source: An Introduction to Language (10 ed, 2014) by V Fromkin, R Rodman, N Hyams. I already read this. [p 578:] root = The morpheme that remains when all affixes are stripped from a complex word, ...
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1answer
78 views

What is my first language: the one I'm more familiar with, or the one I learned first?

I was born in Korea and so Korean was the first language I learned. However, I moved to the US when I was one years old, and after I entered the school system, I quickly learned English. Now, I am ...
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80 views

Did Chomsky originate the term “rewrite rule”?

The earliest mention of the term "rewrite rule" that I am able to find - in the context of phrase structure grammars - is in Chomsky's "Syntactic Structures" (1957). Did he originate the term?
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55 views

If two glyphs representing one phoneme is a “digraph,” what is one glyph representing two phonemes called?

Two glyphs representing one phoneme is a "digraph," but what is it called when one glyph represent two phonemes? For example, the Greek letter ξ (represents the two grouped phonemes, /ks/) or ψ ...
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2answers
472 views

Linguistic term for repeating a noun and replacing the first consonant with M

Usually the speaker intends something like "and similar" I have seen this usage in several languages, e.g. Turkish, Slovakian, Russian, Polish. But i have not heard it in English, German or French ...
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225 views

The origin of the term 'verb'

References tell me that the term 'verb' originally means 'word'. This is easily understood by usages such as 'verbal abuse', 'verbal agreement', 'he's very verbal', etc. That said, of all the various ...
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27 views

Are abstract nouns formed from adjectives the same as being the adjective?

For example, in English we can use "-ness" to make abstract nouns from adjectives, and it would mean "the state of being(the adjective)", "the quality of being(the adjective)", or "the measure of ...
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1answer
52 views

Is there a term for words that modify the intensity of something

Is there a term for words such as very extremely likely super , which modify the intensity of something? Obviously these are all adverbs, but yesterday is also an adverb, and that does not change the ...
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1answer
26 views

Does the single word 'equimolar' have single-word equivalents for less than or greater than?

Does the single word 'equimolar' have single-word equivalents for less than or greater than? If there isn't an officially accepted word for these, could a neologism be improvised using linguistic ...
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2answers
76 views

Am I using the right terms in referring to “soft” and “hard” vowels and consonants?

In English, there is a clear difference between the "a" in "at," and the "a" in "father." I described the difference by saying that the "a" in "father" is "harder" than the other one. The German word ...
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26 views

A term for “accommodating for others' language mistakes”

Is there a specific term for a phenomenon or an ability to accommodate for others' mistakes either in speech or in writing? Something that a native or experienced speaker performs unconsciously or a ...
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2answers
163 views

Is this a nonce word or is there another name for a regularly constructed neologism?

I had an argument with a friend, since he didn't find "claustrophilia" in the dictionary he thought it should be called a nonce word. I thought the term "nonce" was for one-off words that arose a ...
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2answers
76 views

Treatment of or collective term for constructions with no*, some*, any*, every*

Many languages have a little subsystem that uses a combination of particles of no*, some*, any*, every* or similar to create related question and negation words. This is what the system roughly ...
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1answer
51 views

Is there a term to describe comparing two documents to determine if they have the same topic?

I am looking for an NLP field analogous to face verification in Computer Vision, where two images of human faces are compared, and the class label describes whether the images are of the same person. ...
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1answer
35 views

What makes a difference to the meaning of the text with “borrow” and “access”?

My confusion with these two terms comes from the following text: So, when the required target language item is unknown and the learner borrows an L1 substitute, the consequence is an L1 transfer ...
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100 views

Is there a term for errors by native speakers?

I'm not talking about dialectal terms. Say that someone consistently uses a dialect of English fluently but, for whatever reason, says something that native speakers wouldn't normally say. This came ...
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67 views

Meaning of surface expressions

Reading this paper I came across term "surface expression". What does it mean?
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101 views

Terminology for a group of words derived from a common stem?

What is the linguistic term for a palette of words, which are derived / span from the same stem (excluding the so-called doublets like warranty vs guaranty...)? Example: Act (verb), react ...
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3answers
166 views

If two phonemes are merged in pronunciation across a morpheme boundary, are the corresponding letters a digraph?

I want a third, preferrably referenced opinion on a terminological dispute here. The problem is the following (though I am avoiding the actual example to avoid unnecessary complication): In German ...
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1answer
71 views

Does the etymology of 'affricate' consist with its meaning? [closed]

affricative (n.) 1879, perhaps via German, with -ive + Latin affricat-, past participle stem of affricare "rub against," from ad- (see ad-) + fricare "to rub" (see friction). Source: p 40, ...
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17 views

What does “situational associativity between nouns” mean?

I am reading some slides of an NLP course. Slide 25 mentions: situational associativity between nouns (the score of the football game). What does "situational associativity between nouns" mean?
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1answer
93 views

What is the name of this class of grammatical modifiers?

In French (and many other languages), adjectives and pronouns have different classes, e.g.: Adjectives demonstrative indefinite interrogative numerical possessive Pronouns demonstrative ...
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126 views

language distinctions based on gender (sex) of “speaker”

UPDATED BELOW In portuguese women say obrigada and men say obrigado In thai women say sawadee ka and men say sawadee krap Is there a linguistic term for these gender based distinctions? ...
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1answer
56 views

“Dexenoethnic exonyms”: typological studies, references and/or resources?

By "dexenoethnic exonym" (my own coinage for the purpose of this particular question) I mean an ethnonym/glottonym derived from a name originally applied to a (language of a) different ethnic group, ...
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1answer
39 views

What does an 'organic' letter mean?

simultaneous (adj.) [:] 1650s, from Medieval Latin simultaneus, perhaps from simultim "at the same time," extended from Latin simul "at the same time" (see similar (adj.)), or from simul with ...
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78 views

How to understand the difference between “Strong” & “Weak” Hypotheses in the case of Bolinger/Lieberman's views of Intonation?

1. Non-Whorfian contexts and missing Czech equivalents To begin with, I am not sure if this is the right place to ask a question that may just as well pertain to scientific terminology in general. ...
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59 views

North American English: R Muscles and Linguistic Description

I speak North American English. When I pronounce "R", the fleshy part under my chin inside my jawbone tends to move up. When I stress the "R", it really moves up and back. I think the back of my ...
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1answer
92 views

Is the prefix “proto-” reserved only for unattested languages ?

I'm not sure if there's a consensus in linguistic nomenclature about using the aforementioned prefix in naming the reconstructed languages. As we all probably know, in linguistics, there's a custom ...
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1answer
139 views

Which Ancient Greek term describes adjectives used passively?

A teacher claimed, but forgot, the Ancient Greek term that describes adjectives used passively, as used in the following sentence: The weather has been in a most curious state here since ...
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54 views

What is the difference between grammaticalization and grammaticization?

I have encountered two terms recently: grammaticalization and grammaticisation. While in most papers I have read so far both terms seem to be used interchangeably, the following paper appears to ...
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36 views

How does the term “naturalistic speech” differ from “natural language”

Seems some linguists use "naturalistic" -- but I'm not clear on what it means in this context or if it's different from "natural".
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98 views

stem classes and the terms “fusional” / “inflectional”

I have seen both the word "fusional" and the words "inflectional"/"flectional" used as the counterparts of "agglutinative" when describing a morphological process. 1) Is there a distinction between ...
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4answers
124 views

Terminology for the words used to represent fractions in a language? Examples where it is different to the words used for cardinal or ordinal numbers?

While in English Romance languages and Germanic languages, the rendering of fractions usually corresponds to that of the ordinal numbers, i.e a fifth, and a sixth, a seventh, etc. ; it seems to me ...
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1answer
76 views

Is there a phrase for someone being ashamed of, or self-conscious about their accent when moving to another region?

I was reading a book about accents at a local library and there was a chapter where the author says "some varieties of a language are more aesthetically pleasing than others". Some accents are ...