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11 votes
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"Den" or "det" in Swedish

Many languages have such an ambiguity built in. It's very common that you can't tell the morphosyntactic properties of a word or even its phonological interactions just from its form, even given ...
Luke Sawczak's user avatar
  • 2,442
9 votes

Is there a linguistic term for words that can have the same meaning in different languages?

The term you are looking for (depending on etymological link) is cognate, or false cognate: False cognates are pairs of words that seem to be cognates because of similar sounds and meaning, but ...
iacobo's user avatar
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8 votes
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What is meant by the maxim, "Context is King"?

I think it just derives from the belief, common both among Biblical interpreters and linguists, that all meaning is contextual. Some dictionaries make it seem like words just have meanings in ...
curiousdannii's user avatar
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7 votes
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How do we know the definition and meaning of words like "though"

TL;DR The kind of words you're talking about are defined not by their referent but by their function. Meta-words If we were to draw an extremely rough continuum of word concreteness, it might look ...
Luke Sawczak's user avatar
  • 2,442
7 votes
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What is the term for words that were once polite and became impolite?

Pejoration is when a once-neutral word picks up negative connotations over time. A word that is marked by its negative connotations can be called a dysphemism, as in the opposite of a euphemism. But I'...
Draconis's user avatar
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6 votes

Are people's names considered morphemes of a language?

You seem to want to ask whether "Donald" is a lexeme (though Gaston √úmlaut notes that lexemes can also be considered morphemes). There is a category of words that includes names: proper nouns (or ...
b a's user avatar
  • 2,785
6 votes

Why is there pressure to change seemingly neutral words that some consider 'offensive' to their more 'neutral' synonyms?

The reason is not about etymology, it is about individual reactions to words. Plainly put, a word is offensive if, when used, a person finds it offensive. If a particular demographic selection of a ...
user6726's user avatar
  • 83.1k
6 votes

What are the target and source domain of this metaphor

Wikipedia defines the source and target domains as: Source domain: the conceptual domain from which we draw metaphorical expressions (e.g., love is a journey). Target domain: the conceptual domain ...
CamStew's user avatar
  • 146
5 votes

"Den" or "det" in Swedish

I have a problem that the language seems to have no grammar in some cases. For instance there is both "en lag" and "ett lag" meaning completely different things but the word "lag" is the same sound ...
Omar and Lorraine's user avatar
5 votes

Are all morphemes meaningful?

No, there are a small class of morphemes called interfixes which are needed for phonological reasons, but are not considered to carry any semantic content. One example is the i in humaniform.
curiousdannii's user avatar
  • 6,209
5 votes

Are people's names considered morphemes of a language?

It depends on your definition of morpheme. S. Anderson cites an 1880 characterization by Baudoin de Courtenay (Stankiewcicz translation) that a morpheme is "that part of a word which is endowed with ...
user6726's user avatar
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5 votes
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what is out of context thinking called

I think1 what you're looking for here is that, in Gricean terms, Chris is flouting the maxim of relation, which here means that you don't make an analogy unless that analogy is relevant to the ...
abarnert's user avatar
  • 2,625
5 votes

Looking for references on translatability from the point of view of theories of meaning

You could look at this book, or this handout, which will give you some references. From a linguistic perspective, translation is both extremely complex and extremely simple. I think that there does ...
user6726's user avatar
  • 83.1k
4 votes

What does linguistic under-determinacy mean?

Let's make a comparison between formal languages and ordinary (or natural) languages. In the former, you say exactly what you utter. In the latter your communicative intention can differ from the ...
Artemij Keidan's user avatar
4 votes

Verb pairs similar to "buy" and "sell"?

These are usually called 'converses' or 'relational antonyms'. There are more than five, actually there are quite a few because not only verbs, but also nouns and other parts of speech can be ...
user3355's user avatar
4 votes

Verb pairs similar to "buy" and "sell"?

I'm not aware of a special name/class for them. Yet I can imagine some pairs: loan / borrow (I loan to you / You borrow from me) write / read (I write to you / You read from me) send / receive (I ...
Ágatha's user avatar
  • 87
4 votes

Is there a linguistic term for words that can have the same meaning in different languages?

Besides cognates, there are also chance coincidences (say, Maya vuh and German Buch "book") when clearly unrelated words have the same sound and meaning in different languages.
Sir Cornflakes's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Difference between forms of the georgian verbs with and/or without objective version vowel

As a native-speaker I can provide only non-scientific explanations to your questions, but still it may be useful. So, is there any difference between the sentence in (1) and the one in (4) from the ...
Revaz's user avatar
  • 56
4 votes

Does metonymy impart new definitions to words?

Good question! The unsatisfying answer is "it depends". The more satisfying answer is "yes, if you wait long enough". Metonymy is generally a poetic device. Sometimes it's made up in a particular ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 66.8k
4 votes

Can the Hebrew word translated "made" in Genesis 1 be translated as prepared or used?

It is not entirely clear which word you're referring to. Genesis 1 is an entire chapter, comprising close to 400 words, and different translations translate the same word differently. Given that the ...
pinnerup's user avatar
  • 1,013
4 votes

Can we claim that all words derived from the same root must necessarily be related in the meaning?

First, we different words in general have different meanings, even when they are derived from the same root. The whole reason for having different words is to express different meaning, full synonyms ...
Sir Cornflakes's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

How do people discussing NSM primes ensure they're thinking of the same meanings?

NSM primes do have fixed meanings that don't include all of the polysemy present in a language. For example, the YOU prime is strictly singular, so you might need to be careful not to just use YOU for ...
curiousdannii's user avatar
  • 6,209
3 votes

"Den" or "det" in Swedish

Two, three homonyms lag (different meanings, identically written/sounding words), here with two genders for the articles: en/et. A German example with the same phenomenon: die Steuer = the tax, das ...
Joop Eggen's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

what Egyptian hieroglyph(s) meant/depicted "time"?

It depends on what you mean by "time". 3t means "instant" or "moment"; 88 means "eternity"; sp means "time" as an abstract concept. There are also hieroglyphs for "year", "month", and various ...
Draconis's user avatar
  • 66.8k
3 votes

Linguistics concept about meaning of words according to a context

How is called in linguistics the fact some words have a meaning only with other words? Words that have many context-dependent meanings are called polysemes. Although their meaning depends usually on ...
csha's user avatar
  • 131
3 votes

Are all morphemes meaningful?

Traditionally, a morpheme is defined as the minimal meaningful unit of language. Under this assumption, every morpheme is meaningful by defnition. However, this is not always that simple. The ...
Natalie Clarius's user avatar
3 votes

Are all morphemes meaningful?

Well it depends on how you define "morpheme". Usually, it's defined as a sign, i.e. a form-meaning correspondence. In this case, the answer is "yes" by definition (and the -i- in humaniform is not a ...
jaam's user avatar
  • 504
3 votes

Does this sentence have two meanings?

The two senses are specific and non-specific: Specific: A certain person, who happens to be an employee, must leave. ("Employee" is not in the scope of "must".) Non-specific: There is a requirement ...
Greg Lee's user avatar
  • 12.5k
3 votes

In case the fregean distinction between "sense" and " denotation" is used in linguistics, what purpose does it serve in this discipline?

George Lakoff pointed out that definite anaphora requires identity of reference between antecedent and proform, while indefinite anaphora requires identity of sense.
Greg Lee's user avatar
  • 12.5k
3 votes

What are the target and source domain of this metaphor

The natural phenomena are the source, and the attack/action is the target, in this case. There are numerous examples in English of acts of physical aggression being compared to weather phenomena, ...
Rurik's user avatar
  • 194

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