Foreword & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; … .3
Chapter I. Semantic alterations. Types of Semantic alterations & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; … 4
Definition & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; .4
Metaphor & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; 7
Metonymy & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; … 9
Other types of Semantic alterations & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; .. 10
Chapter II. Causes of semantic alteration & # 8230 ; … & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; 12
Conclusion & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; 15
Literature & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; … & # 8230 ; & # 8230 ; 16
The significance of a word can alter in the class of clip. Changes of lexical significances can be proved by comparing contexts of different times. Transportation of the significance is called lexico-semantic word-building. In such instances the outer facet of a word does non alter.
The causes of semantic alterations can be extra-linguistic and lingual, e.g. the alteration of the lexical significance of the noun & # 171 ; write & # 187 ; was due to extra-linguistic causes. Primarily & # 171 ; write & # 187 ; comes back to the Latin word & # 171 ; penna & # 187 ; ( a plume of a bird ) . As people wrote with goose pens the name was transferred to steel pens which were subsequently on used for authorship. Still subsequently any instrument for authorship was called & # 171 ; a pen & # 187 ; .
On the other manus causes can be lingual, e.g. the struggle of equivalent word when a perfect equivalent word of a native word is borrowed from some other linguistic communication one of them may specialise in its significance, e.g. the noun & # 171 ; tide & # 187 ; in Old English was polisemantic and denoted & # 171 ; clip & # 187 ; , & # 171 ; season & # 187 ; , & # 171 ; hr & # 187 ; . When the Gallic words & # 171 ; clip & # 187 ; , & # 171 ; season & # 187 ; , & # 171 ; hr & # 187 ; were borrowed into English they ousted the word & # 171 ; tide & # 187 ; in these significances. It was specialized and now means & # 171 ; regular rise and autumn of the sea caused by attractive force of the Moon & # 187 ; . The significance of a word can besides alter due to ellipsis, e.g. the word-group & # 171 ; a train of passenger cars & # 187 ; had the significance of & # 171 ; a row of passenger cars & # 187 ; , subsequently on & # 171 ; of passenger cars & # 187 ; was dropped and the noun & # 171 ; train & # 187 ; changed its significance, it is used now in the map and with the significance of the whole word-group.
Semantic alterations have been classified by different scientists. The most complete categorization was suggested by a German scientist Herman Paul in his work & # 171 ; Prinzipien des Sprachgeschichte & # 187 ; . It is based on the logical rule. He distiguishes two chief ways where the semantic alteration is gradual ( specialisation and generalisation ) , two fleeting witting semantic alterations ( metaphor and metonymy ) and besides secondary ways: gradual ( lift and debasement ) , fleeting ( hyperbole and litote ) .
Chapter I. SEMANTIC CHANGES. TYPES OF SEMANTIC CHANGES.
The development and alteration of the semantic construction of a word is ever a beginning of qualitative and quantitative development of the vocabulary.
All the types discussed depend upon some comparing between the earlier ( whether extinct or still in usage ) and the new significance of the given word. This comparing may be based on the difference between impressions expressed or referents in the existent universe that are pointed out, on the type of psychological association at work, on rating of the latter by the talker or, perchance, on some other characteristic.
The order in which assorted types are described will follow more or less closely the historical categorizations of M. Breal and H. Paul. No effort at a new categorization is considered necessary. There seems to be no point in augmenting the figure of unsatisfactory strategies already offered in literature. The intervention is therefore traditional.
M. Breal was likely the first to stress the fact that in go throughing from general use into some particular domain of communicating a word as a regulation undergoes some kind of specialization of its significance. The word instance,
for case, alongside its general significance of ‘circumstances in which a individual or a thing is ‘ possesses particular significances: in jurisprudence ( ‘a jurisprudence suit ‘ ) , in grammar ( e.g. the Possessive instance ) ,
in medical specialty ( ‘a patient ‘ , ‘an unwellness ‘ ) . Compare the followers:
One of Charles ‘s instances had been a kid ailment with a signifier of diphtheria.
( C. P. SNOW ) ( instance = a
patient ) .
The Solicitor whom I met at the Holfords & # 8217 ; sent me a instance which any immature adult male at my phase would hold thought himself lucky to acquire.
( Idem ) ( instance = a
inquiry decided, in a tribunal of jurisprudence, a jurisprudence suit )
The general, non specialised significance is besides really frequent in contemporary English. For illustration: At last we tiptoed up the wide slippery step & # 173 ;
instance, and went to our suites. But in my instance non to kip, instantly at
( Idem ) ( instance = fortunes in which one is )
This difference is revealed in the difference of contexts in which these words occur, in their different valency. Wordss connected with unwellnesss and medical specialty in the first illustration, and words connected with jurisprudence and tribunal processs in the 2nd, organize the semantic paradigm of the word instance.
The word drama
suggests different impressions to a kid, a dramatist, a football player, a instrumentalist or a chess-player and has in their address dif & # 173 ; ferent semantic paradigms. The same applies to the noun cell
as used by a life scientist, an lineman, a nun or a representative of the jurisprudence ; or the word gas
as understood by a chemist, a homemaker, a automobilist or a mineworker.
In all the illustrations considered above a word which once represen & # 173 ; ted a impression of a broader range has come to render a impression of a narrower range. When the significance is specialized, the word can call fewer objects, i.e. hold fewer referents. At the same clip the content of the impression is being enriched, as it includes -a greater figure of relevant characteristics by which the impression is characterized. Or as St. Ullmann puts it: “ The word is now applicable to more things but tells us less about them. ” The decrease of range histories for the term “ narrowing of the significance ” which is even more frequently used than the term “ specialisation ” . We shall avoid the term “ narrowing ” , since it is slightly deceptive. Actually it is neither the significance nor the impression, but the range of the impression that.is narrowed.
There is besides a 3rd term for the same phenomenon, viz. “ distinction ” , but it is non so widely used as the first two footings.
H. Paul, every bit good as many other writers, emphasizes the fact that this type of semantic alteration is peculiarly frequent in vocabulary of pro & # 173 ; fessional and trade groups.
H. Paul ‘s illustrations are from the German linguistic communication but it is really easy to happen parallel instances in English. So this type of alteration is reasonably cosmopolitan and fails to unwrap any specifically English belongingss.
The best known illustrations of specialisation in the general linguistic communication are as follows: OE d & # 275 ; or
‘wild animal ‘ & gt ; ModE cervid
‘wild rum, inant of a peculiar species ‘ ( the original significance was still alive in Shakespeare ‘s clip as is proved by the undermentioned citation: Rats and mice and such
little cervid ) ;
OE boundary line
‘food ‘ & gt ;
‘edible flesh ‘ , i.e. merely a partic & # 173 ; ular species of nutrient ( the earlier significance is still noticeable in the com & # 173 ; lb sweetmeat ) .
This last illustration deserves particular attending because the inclination of fixed context to continue the original significance is really pronounced as is invariably proved by assorted illustrations. Other well-worn illustrations are: OE fu & # 1079 ; ol
‘bird ‘ ( californium. Germ Vogel )
& gt ; ModE foal
‘domestic birds ‘ . The old, significance is still preserved in poetic enunciation and in fit looks, like poultry of the air.
Among its derived functions, Fowler
agencies ‘a individual who shoots or traps wild birds for athletics or nutrient ‘ ; the shot or pin downing itself is called fowling ; a fowling piece
is a gun. OE hund
‘dog ‘ ( californium. . Germ Hund ) & gt ; hound
‘a species of runing Canis familiaris ‘ . Many words connected with literacy besides show similar alterations: therefore, Teach & lt ; .OE t & # 230 ; can
‘to show ‘ , ‘to Teach ‘ ; compose
& lt ; OE wr & # 299 ; sunburn
‘to write ‘ , ‘to abrasion ‘ , ‘to mark ‘ ( californium. Germ rei & # 946 ; nut ) & lt ;
composing in Europe had first the signifier of rubing on the bark of the trees. Tracing these semantic alterations the bookmans can, as it were, witness the development of civilization.
In the above examples the new significance superseded the earlier 1. Both significances can besides coexist in the construction of a polysemous word or be differentiated locally. The word item
& lt ; OE t & # 257 ; Ce,
& # 9553 ; Germ Zeichen
originally had the wide significance of ‘sign ‘ . The semantic alteration that occurred in it illustrates systematic mutuality within the vocabulary elements. Brought into competition with the borrowed word mark it became restricted in usage to a few instances of fixed context ( a love
item, a item of regard, a nominal ballot, a nominal payment )
and accordingly restricted in significance. In contemporary English item
agencies something little, unimportant or inexpensive which represents something large, of import or valuable. Other illustrations of specialisation are room,
which alongside the new significance keeps the old one of ‘space ‘ ; maize
originally intending ‘grain ‘ , ‘the seed of any cereal works ‘ : locally the word becomes particular & # 173 ; ized and is understood to denote the taking harvest of the territory ; hence in England maize
agencies ‘wheat ‘ , in Scotland ‘oats ‘ , whereas in the USA, as an eclipsis for Indian maize, it came to intend ‘maize ‘ .
As a particular group belonging to the same type one can advert the formation of proper nouns from common nouns chiefly in toponomies, i.e. topographic point names. For case, the City, & # 8212 ;
the concern portion of London ; the Highlands & # 8212 ;
the cragged portion of Scotland ; Oxford & # 8212 ;
Univer & # 173 ; sity town in England from ox+ford,
i.e. a topographic point where cattle could ford the river ; the Tower
( of London ) & # 8212 ; originally a fortress and castle, subsequently a province prison, now a museum.
In the above examples the alteration of significance occurred without alteration of sound signifier and without any intercession of morphological procedures. In many instances, nevertheless, the two procedures, semantic and morphological, travel manus in manus. For case, when sing the consequence of the agent postfix -ist
added to the noun root art-
we might anticipate the whole to intend any individual occupied in art, a representative of any sort of art, but usage specializes the significance of the word creative person
and restricts it to a equivalent word of painter.
The procedure contrary to specialization is termed generalization and broadening of significance. In that instance the range of the new impression is wider than that of the original one ( hence broadening ) , whereas the content of the impression is poorer. In most instances generalization is combined with a higher order of abstraction than in the impression expressed by the earlier significance. The passage from a concrete significance to an Bachelor of Arts & # 173 ; stract one is a most frequent characteristic in the semantic history of words. The alteration may be explained as occasioned by state of affairss in which non all the characteristics of the impressions rendered are of equal importance for the message.
& lt ; OE R & # 230 ; de
( a derived function of the verb R & # 299 ; dan
‘to drive ‘ ) meant ‘prepared for a drive ‘ . Flies
originally meant ‘to move through the air with wings ‘ ; now it denotes any sort of motion in the air or outer infinite and besides really speedy motion in any medium.
The procedure went really far in the word thing
with its original mean & # 173 ; ings ’cause ‘ , ‘object ‘ , ‘decision ‘ , ‘meeting ‘ , and ‘the determination of the meeting ‘ , ‘that which was decided upon ‘ . ( Cf. Norse storting
‘par & # 173 ; liament ‘ . ) At present, as a consequence of this procedure of generalization, the word can replace about any noun, and receives an about pronominal force. In fact all the words belonging to the group of generic footings fall into this class of generalisation. By generic footings we shall intend non-specific, non-distributive footings applicable to a great figure ; of single members of a large category of words. The grammatical significance of this category of words becomes predominant in their semantic constituents. Notice the really general, character of the word concern
in the followers: “ Donald has n’t a really good mode of interviews. “ & # 8212 ; ” All this
good-manner concern, ” Clun said, “ they take far excessively much notice of it now in my sentiment ”
( A. WILSON ) ,
It is sometimes hard to separate the cases of generalisation proper from generalisation combined with a fa-ding of lexical significance ousted by the grammatical or emotional significance that take its topographic point. These phenomena are closely connected with the curious features of grammatical construction typical of each single linguistic communication. One Ob & # 173 ; serves them, for case, analyzing the semantic history of the English subsidiary and semi-auxiliary verbs, particularly have, do, shall, will, turn,
and that of some English prepositions and adverbs which in the class of clip have come to show grammatical dealingss. The weakening of lexical significance due to the influence of emotional force is revealed in such words as terribly, awfully, terrific, nailing.
“ Specialization ” and “ generalisation ” are therefore identified on the evid- ‘ ence of comparing logical impressions expressed by the significance of words. If, on the other manus, the linguist is guided by psychological consider & # 173 ; ations and has to travel by the type of association at work in the transportation of the name of one object to another and different one, he will detect that the most frequent transportations are based on associations of similarity or of adjacency. As these types of transportation are good known in rhetoric as ; figures of address called metaphor ( Gr meta
‘change ‘ and phero
‘bear ‘ ) and metonymy ( Gr metonymia
‘name ‘ ) and the same footings are adopted here. A metaphor is a transportation of name based on the association of similarity and therefore is really a concealed comparing. It presents a method of description which likens one thing to another by mentioning to it as if it were some other one. A cunning individual, for case, is referred to as a fox.
A adult female may be called a Prunus persica, a lemon, a cat,
etc. In a metonymy, this mentioning to one thing as if it were some other one is based on association of adjacency. Sean O’Casey in his one-act drama “ The Hall of Healing ” metonymically names his personages harmonizing to the things they are have oning: Red Muffler, Grey Shawl,
etc. Metaphor and metonymy differ from the two first types of semantic alteration, i.e. generalisation and specialisation, inasmuch.as they do non arise as a consequence of gradual about unperceivable alteration in many contexts, but semen of a purposeful fleeting transportation of a name from one object to another belonging to a different domain of world.
In all treatment of lingual metaphor and metonymy it must be borne in head that they are different from metaphor and metonymy as literary devices. When the latter are offered and accepted both the writer and the reader are to a greater or lesser grade aware that this mention is nonliteral, that the object has another name. The relationship of the direct denotive significance of the word and the significance it has in the literary context in inquiry is based on similarity of some characteristics in the objects compared. The poetic metaphor is the fruit of the writer ‘s originative imaginativeness, as for illustration when England is called by Shakespeare ( in “ King Richard II ” ) this cherished rock set in the Ag sea,
or when A. Tennyson writes: What stamps the furrow deeper on the forehead? / To
position each loved one blotted from life ‘s page.
In a lingual metaphor, particularly when it is dead as a consequence of long use, the thing named frequently has no other name. In a dead metaphor the comparing is wholly disregarded, as for case in the words gather, beginning
in the undermentioned illustration covering with some information: / gathered that one or two of their beginnings were fly-by-night, and some non so much shady as guerrilla in a most unexpected manner.
( SNOW )
The significance of such looks as a Sun beam
or a beam of visible radiation
are non explained by-allusions to a tree, although the word is really derived from OE beam
‘tree ‘ || Germ Baum,
whence the significance beam
a long piece of squared lumber supported at both terminals ‘ has besides developed. The metaphor is dead. There are no associations with biddies in the verb ‘ brood
‘to meditate ‘ ( frequently dourly ) , ‘though the direct significance is ‘to sit on eggs ‘ .
There may be ephemeral phases: a constriction
‘any thing blockading an even flow of work ” , for case, is non a cervix and does non belong to a bottle. The transportation is perchance due to the fact that there are some common characteristics in the narrow top portion of the bottle, a narrow mercantile establishment for route traffic, and obstructions interfering with the smooth working of administrative machinery.
Metaphors, H. Paul points out, may be based upon really different types of similarity, for case, similarity of form: caput of a chou, the dentition of a proverb.
This similarity may be based on a similarity of map. The transferred significance is easy recognized from the context: the caput of the school, the key to a enigma.
The similarity may be supported besides by place: pes of a page, of a mountain,
or behavior and map: pedant, wirepuller.
The word & # 8216 ; whip & # 8217 ;
a cilium used to press Equus caballuss on ‘ is metaphorically transferred to an functionary in the British Parliament appointed by a political party to see that members are present at arguments, particularly when a ballot is taken, to look into the vote and besides to rede the members on the policy of the several party, etc.
In the kilogram of the tabular array
the metaphor is motivated by the similarity of the lower portion of the tabular array and the human limb in place and partially jn form and map. Anthropomorphic metaphors are among the most frequent. The manner in which the words denoting parts of the organic structure are made to show a assortment of significances may be illustrated by the followers: caput of an ground forces, of a emanation, of a family ; weaponries and oral cavity of a ‘ river, oculus of a needle, pes of a hill, lingua of a bell
and so on and so forth. The transferred significance is easy recognized from the context: … her pess were in low-heeled brown brogans with fringed linguas.
( PLOMER & gt ;
Numerous instances of metaphoric transportation are based upon the analogy between continuance of clip and infinite, e.g. long distance: : long- address ; a short way: : a short clip.
The transportation of infinite dealingss upon psychological and mental impressions may be exemplified by words and looks concerned with apprehension: to catch ( to hold on ) an thought ; to take a intimation ; , to acquire the bent of ; to throw light upon
This metaphoric alteration from the concrete to the abstract is besides represented in such simple words as mark, span, bang. Mark
comes from OE scoru
‘twenty ‘ from ON skor
‘twenty ‘ and besides ‘notch ‘ . In OE clip notches were cut on sticks to maintain a calculation. As mark
is connate with shear,
it is really likely that the significance developed from the twentieth notch that was made of a larger size. From the intending ‘line ‘ or ‘notch cut or scratched down ‘ many new significances sprang out, such as ‘number of points made by a participant or a side in some games ‘ , ‘running history ‘ , ‘a debt ‘ , ‘written or printed music ‘ , etc. Cross
from OE spann
‘maxi & # 173 ; silent distance between the tips of pollex and small finger used as a meas & # 173 ; ure of length ‘ , came to intend ‘full extent from terminal to stop ‘ ( of a span, an arch, etc. ) and ‘a short distance ‘ . Thrill
from ME thriven
‘to Pierce ‘ developed into the present significance ‘to penetrate with emotion ‘ .
Another subgroup of metaphors comprises passages of proper names into common 1s: an Adonis, a Cicero, a Don Juan,
etc. When a proper name like Falstaff
is used mentioning specifically to the hero of Shakes & # 173 ; peare ‘s dramas it has a alone mention. But when people speak of a individual they know naming him Falstaff
they make a proper name generic for a corpulent, jovial, irrepressibly insolent individual and it no longer denotes a alone being. Cf. Don Juan
as used about attractive rakes. To certain races and nationalities traditional features have been attached by the popular head with or without existent justification. If a individual is an absolute soldier of fortune and a dissembler into the deal they call him a Philistine,
ruthlessly destructive people are called Vandals.
If the transportation is based upon the association of adjacency it is called metonymy. It is a displacement of names between things that are known to be in some manner or other connected in world. The transportation may be condi & # 173 ; tioned by spacial, temporal, causal, symbolic, instrumental, functional and other dealingss.
Therefore, the word book
is derived from the name of a tree on which letterings were scratched: ModE book
& lt ; OE boc
‘beech ‘ . ModE win & lt ; .
ht ‘ ; the word has been shifted so as to use to the success following contending. Cash
is an version of the Gallic word caisse is an version of the Gallic word caisse
‘box ‘ ; from calling the container it came to intend what was con & # 173 ; tained, i.e. money ; the original significance was lost in competition with the new word safe. ‘box ‘ ; from calling the container it came to intend what was contained, i.e. money ; the original significance was lost in competition with the new word safe.
Spatial dealingss are besides present when the name of the topographic point is used for the people busying it. The chair Spatial dealingss are besides present when the name of the topographic point is used for the people busying it. The chair
may intend ‘the chair & # 173 ; adult male ‘ , the saloon may intend ‘the chairman ‘ , the saloon
‘the attorneies ‘ , the dais ‘the attorneies ‘ , the dais
‘the priests ‘ . The word town ‘the priests ‘ . The word town
may denote the dwellers of a town and the word house may denote the dwellers of a town and the word house
the members of the House of Commons or of Lords. Cello, fiddle, saxophone the members of the House of Commons or of Lords. Cello, fiddle, saxophone
are frequently used to denote non the instruments but the instrumentalists who play them. are frequently used to denote non the instruments but the instrumentalists who play them.
A causal relationship is obvious in the undermentioned development: ModE fright
& lt ; ME feere
& lt ; OE f & # 230 ; R, f & # 275 ; R
‘danger ‘ , ‘unexpected onslaught ‘ . States and belongingss serve as names for objects and people possessing them: young person,
age, governments, forces.
The name of the action can function to call the consequence of the action: ModE kill
& lt ; ME killen
‘to hit on the caput ‘ , ModE stay
|| Germ schlagen..
Emotions may be named by the motions that accompany them: to glower, to get down.
There are besides the well-known cases of symbol for thing symbol & # 173 ; ized: the Crown
for ‘monarchy ‘ ; the instrument for the merchandise: ‘hand
‘handwriting ‘ ; receptacle for content, as in the word boiler,
and some others. Wordss for the stuff from which an article is made are frequently used to denote the peculiar article: glass, Fe, Cu, Ni
are good known illustrations. The pars pro toto where the name of a portion is applied to the whole may be illustrated by such military footings as the royal Equus caballus
for ‘cavalry ‘ and pes
for ‘infantry ‘ , and the looks like / want to
hold a word with you.
The contrary procedure is observed when OE c & # 275 ; ol
‘a ship ‘ develops among other discrepancies into keel
‘a flatboat burden of coal ‘ .
A topographic point of its ain within metonymical alteration is occupied by the alleged functional alteration. The type has its distinctive features: in this instance the displacement is between names of things replacing one another in human pattern. Therefore, the early instrument for authorship was a plume or more precisely a quill ( OE pen,
from OFr penne,
from It penna,
from Lat. penna
‘feather ‘ ) . We write with fountain-pens that are made of differ & # 173 ; ent stuffs and have nil in common with plumes except the map, but the name remains. The name rudder
comes from OE roper
‘oar ‘ || Germ Ruder
‘oar ‘ . The displacement of significance is due to the displacement of map: the guidance was once achieved by an oar. The helmsman was called pilot ;
with the coming of air power one who operates the winging controls of an aircraft was besides called pilot.
For more instances of functional alteration see besides the semantic history of the words: filter, pocket, spoon,
Common names may be derived from proper names besides metonymically, as in macadam and Diesel,
so named after their discoverers.
Many physical and proficient units are named after great scientists: V, ohm, ampere, W,
There are besides many cases in political vocabulary when the topographic point of some constitution is used non merely for the constitution itself or its staff but besides for its policy: the White House, the Pentagon, Wall Street, Downing Street, Fleet Street.
Examples of geographic names turning into common nouns to call the goods exported or arising there are extremely legion, e.g.
astrakhan, Bikini, Boston, cardigan, China, tweed.
Garments came to be known by the names of those who brought them into manner: macintosh,
4. Other types of semantic alterations.
Following the lead of literary unfavorable judgment linguists have frequently adopted footings of rhetoric for other types of semantic alteration, besides metaphor and metonymy. These are: exaggeration, litotes, sarcasm, e u P H e m I s m. In all these instances the same warning that was given in connexion with metaphors and metonymy must be kept in head: viz. , there is a difference between these footings as understood in literary criti & # 173 ; cism and in lexicology. Hyperbole ( from Gr huperball & # 333 ;
‘exceed ‘ ) is an overdone statement non meant to be understood literally but showing an intensely emotional attitude of the talker to what he is talking approximately. The emotional tone is due to the unlogical character in which the direct denotative and the contextual emotional significances are combined.
A really good illustration is chosen by I. R. Galperin from Byron, and one can non assist borrowing it:
When people say “ I ‘ve told you fifty times, ”
They mean to call on the carpet and really frequently do,
The reader will observe that Byron ‘s modulation is clearly conversational, the poet is giving us his observations refering conversational looks, So the.hyperbole here is non poetic but lingual.
The same may be said about looks like: It ‘s perfectly madden & # 173 ; ing, You ‘ll be the decease of me, I hate disturbing you, It ‘s monstrous, It ‘s a incubus, A thousand forgivenesss, A 1000 thanks, Have n’t seen you for ages, I ‘d give the universe to, I shall be everlastingly thankful, I ‘d love to make it,
The most of import difference between a poetic exaggeration and a lingual one lies in the fact that the former creates an image, whereas in the latter the denotive significance rapidly fades out and the correspon & # 173 ; donging overstating words serve merely as general marks of emotion without stipulating the emotion itself. Some of the most frequent emphasized words are: perfectly! terribly! awfully! lovely! magnificent! splendid!
and so on.
The rearward figure is called meiosiss ( from Gr cubic decimeter & # 299 ; tos
‘plain ‘ , ‘meagre ‘ ) or understatement. It. might be defined as showing the affirmatory by the negation of its contrary: e.g. non bad
or non half bad
for ‘good ‘ , non little
for ‘great ‘ , no coward
for ‘brave ‘ . Some understate & # 173 ; ments do non incorporate negations: instead decent ; I could make with a cup
It is, nevertheless, dubious whether meiosiss should be considered under the header of semantic alteration at all, because as a regulation it creates no per & # 173 ; manent alteration in the semantic construction of the word concerned. The intent of understatement is non to lead on but to bring forth a stronger feeling on the listener.
Besides taken from rhetoric is the term sarcasm, i.e. look of one ‘s significance by words of opposite significance, particularly a fake acceptance of the opposite point of position for the intent of ridicule. One of the significances of the adjectival Nice
is ‘bad ‘ , ‘unsatisfactory ‘ ; it is marked off as ironical and illustrated by the illustration: You ‘ve got us into a nice
The same may be said about the adjectival pretty: A reasonably muss
you ‘ve made of it!
Changes depending on the societal attitude to the object named, connect & # 173 ; erectile dysfunction with societal rating and emotional tone, are called ameliora & # 173 ; tion and pejoration of significance. Amelioration or lift is a semantic displacement undergone by words due to their referents coming up the societal graduated table. For case OE cwen
‘a adult female ‘ & gt ; ModE queen,
‘a immature retainer ‘ & gt ; ModE knight.
The words steward
and air hostess
( the riders ‘ attender on ships and airliners ) have undergone a great betterment. Steward
& lt ; OE stigweard
‘a hordeolum ‘ and weard
‘a ward ‘ , dates back from the yearss when the main wealth of the Saxon landholder was his hogs, of whom the stigweard
had to take attention. The significance of some words has been elevated through associations with blue life or town life. This is true about such adjectives as civil, gallant, polished.
The contrary procedure is pejoration or debasement ; it involves a lowering in societal graduated table connected with the visual aspect of a derogatory and contemptuous affectional tone reflecting the contempt of the upper categories towards the lower 1s. A rogue
& lt ; OE cnafa
meant at first ‘boy ‘ , so ‘servant ‘ , and eventually became a term of maltreatment and contempt. Another illustration of the same sort is blackguard.
In the Godhead ‘s cortege of Middle Ages served among others the guard of Fe pots and other kitchen utensils black with carbon black. From the immoral characteristics attrib & # 173 ; uted to these retainers by their Masterss comes the present contemptuous ‘ significance of the word cad.
A similar history is traced for the words peasant, peasant, buffoon, scoundrel.
Euphemism ( Gr euphemismos
‘well ‘ and pheme
‘speak ‘ ) is the permutation of words of mild or obscure intensions for looks unsmooth, unpleasant or for some other grounds unmentionable.
Within the historical attack the phenomenon has been repeatedly classed by many linguists as tabu. This point of view is barely accep & # 173 ; tabular array for modern European linguistic communications. With crude peoples taboo is a prohibition meant as a precaution against supernatural forces. Name callings of ritual objects or animate beings were taboo because the name was regarded as the equivalent of what was named. S. Ullmann returns to the construct – of forbidden several times exemplifying it with expiatory names given in the early periods of linguistic communication development to such objects of supersti & # 173 ; tious fright as the bear ( whose name originally meant ‘brown ‘ ) and the weasel. He treats both illustrations as stuff of comparative semantics. The tabu influence behind the periphrasiss used to call these anim & # 173 ; ALSs becomes rather obvious when the same phenomenon is observed in similar names in assorted other linguistic communications. There is no necessity to mention them here as they are given in any book on general linguistics. It should be borne in head that tabu has historical relevancy. No such resistance as that between a direct and a propitiatory name for an animate being, no affair how unsafe, can be found in contemporary English.
With peoples of developed civilization, euphemism is per se differ & # 173 ; ent, has nil to make with tabu and is dictated by societal use, moral tact and etiquette. Cf. fagot
‘mad ‘ , deceased
‘dead ‘ , perspire
v ‘sweat ‘ .
From the semantical point of position euphemism is of import because significances with unpleasant intensions appear in words once impersonal, as a consequence of their repeated use alternatively of other words that are for some ground unmentionable.
The stuff of this chapter shows that semantic alterations are non arbitrary. They proceed in conformity with the logical and psychological Torahs of idea, otherwise changed words would ne’er be understood and could non function the intent of communicating. The assorted efforts at categorization undertaken by traditional linguistics, although inconsistent (
and frequently subjective, are utile, since they permit the linguist to happen his manner about an huge accretion of semantic facts. However, they say nil or about nil about the causes of these alterations.
Chapter II. CAUSES OF SEMANTIC CHANGE
In comparing with categorizations of semantic alteration the job of their causes appears ignored. Opinions on this point are scattered through a great figure of lingual plants and have seemingly ne’er -been collected into anything complete. And yet a thorough apprehension of the phenomena involved.in semantic alteration is impossible unless the wherefore and wherefores become known. This is of primary importance as it may take finally to a clearer, reading of linguistic communication develop & # 173 ; ment. The vocabulary is the most flexible portion of the linguistic communication and it is exactly its semantic facet that responds most readily to every alteration in the human activity in whatever sphere it may go on to take topographic point.
The causes of semantic alterations may be grouped under two chief caput & # 173 ; ings, lingual and extralinguistic 1s. Of these the first group has suffered much greater disregard in the yesteryear and it is non surprising therefore that far less is known of it than of the 2nd. It deals with alterations due to the changeless mutuality of vocabulary units in linguistic communication and address, such as distinction between equivalent word, alterations taking topographic point in connexion with eclipsis and with fixed contexts, alterations ensuing from ambiguity in certain contexts, and some other instances.
Semantic alteration due to the distinction of equivalent word is a gradual alteration observed in the class of linguistic communication history, sometimes, but non needfully, affecting the semantic assimilation of loan words. See, for illustration, the words clip
They used to be synonyms. Then surge
took on its more limited application to the sporadically switching Waterss, and clip
entirely is used in the general sense.
Another illustration of semantic alteration affecting synonymic differen & # 173 ; tiation is the word turn.
it was a noun, intending ‘a rope ‘ whereas the verb thrawan
( now throw )
intend both ‘hurl ‘ and ‘twist ‘ . Since the visual aspect in the Middle English of the verb twisten
( ‘twist ‘ ) the first verb lost this significance. But threw
in its bend influenced the development of casten ( dramatis personae ) ,
a Norse adoption. Its primary significance ‘hurl ‘ , ‘throw ‘ is now present merely in some set looks. Cast
maintain its old significance in such phrases as dramatis personae a glimpse, cast tonss, cast smth. in one ‘s
has really many significances, the latest being ‘to dance the turn ‘
Fixed context may be regarded as another lingual factor in semantic alteration. Both factors are at work in the instance of item
. When brought into competition with the loan word mark,
it became restricted in usage to a figure of fit looks such as love item, item of regard
and so became specialised in intending. Fixed context has this influence non merely in phrases but in compound words every bit good. OE boundary line
meant ‘food ‘ , its descendent meat
refers merely to flesh nutrient except in the set look meat and imbibe
and the compound sweetmeats.
No systematic intervention has so far been offered for the syntagmatic semantic alterations depending on the context. But such instances do be demoing that probe of the job is of import.
One of these is eclipsis. The measure uping words of a frequent phrase may be omitted: sale comes to be used for bargain-priced sale, suggest
for to suggest
matrimony, to be anticipating
for to be anticipating a babe.
Or frailty versa, the meat word of the phrase may look redundant: minerals
for mineral Waterss.
Due to ellipsis starve
which originally meant ‘die ‘ ( californium. Germ sterben )
came to replace the whole phrase dice of hungriness,
and besides began to intend ‘suffer from deficiency of nutrient ‘ and even in conversational usage ‘to feel hungry ‘ . Furthermore as there are many words with transitive and intran & # 173 ; sitive discrepancies calling cause and consequence, starve
came to intend ‘to cause to die with hungriness ‘ .
English has a great assortment of these regular happenstances of different facets, aboard with cause and consequence, we could see the happenstance of subjective and nonsubjective, active and inactive facets particularly fre & # 173 ; quent in adjectives. E.g. hateful
agencies ‘exciting hatred ‘ and ‘full of hatred ‘ ; funny & # 8212 ;
‘strange ‘ and ‘inquisitive ‘ ; pathetic & # 8212 ;
‘exciting com & # 173 ; passion ‘ and ‘compassionate ‘ . Compare the different usage of the words doubtful
in the followers: to be dubious
: : a dubious advan & # 173 ;
tage, to be healthy: : a healthy clime.
The extralinguistic causes are determined by the societal nature of the linguistic communication: they are observed in alterations of intending ensuing from the development of the impression expressed and the thing named and by the visual aspect of new impressions and things. In other words, extralinguistic causes of semantic alteration are connected with the development of the human head as it moulds world to conform with its demands.
Languages are strongly affected by societal, political, economic, cul & # 173 ; tural and proficient alteration. The influence of those factors upon lingual phenomena is studied by sociolinguistics. It shows that societal factors can act upon even structural characteristics of lingual units, footings of scientific discipline, for case, have a figure of specific characteristics as compared to words used in other domains of human activity.
The word being a lingual realisation of impression, it changes with the advancement of human consciousness. This procedure is reflected in the develop & # 173 ; ment of lexical significance. As the human head achieves an of all time more exact apprehension of the universe of world and the nonsubjective relation & # 173 ; ships that characterize it, the impressions become more and more exact reflec & # 173 ; tions of existent things. The history of the societal, economic and political life of people, the advancement of civilization and scientific discipline bring about alterations in impressions and things act uponing the semantic facet of linguistic communication. For case, OE eorpe
intend ‘the land under people ‘s pess ‘ , ‘the dirt ‘ and ‘the universe of adult male ‘ as opposed to heaven
that was supposed to be inhabited first by Gods and subsequently on, with the spread of Christianity, by God, his saints and the psyche of the dead. With the advancement of scientific discipline Earth came to intend the 3rd planet from the Sun and the cognition of it was con & # 173 ; stantly enriched.
The word infinite
from the significances of ‘extension ‘ or ‘intervening distance ‘ came to intend ‘the limitless sweep in which everything exists ‘ and more late came to be used particularly in the significance of ‘outer infinite ‘ . Atoms
( Gr. atomos
‘indivisible ‘ from a
‘not ‘ and tomos
‘cut ‘ ) were once thought to be indivisible smallest atoms of affair and were normally associated in layperson ‘s address with littleness. The word could be metaphorically used in the significance of ‘a bantam animal ‘ . When atoms were found to be made up of a positively charged karyon unit of ammunition which negatively charged negatrons go around, the impression of an atom brought about intensions of discrete ( discontinuous ) character of affair. With the progresss made since scientific discipline has found ways of let go ofing the energy hidden in the splitting of the atomic karyon, the impression is accom & # 173 ; panied with the thought of huge potencies present, as, for case, in the phrase Atoms for peace.
Since the coming of the atomic bomb the adjectival atomic
clearly connotes in the English linguistic communication with the menace of a most destructive warfare ( atomic bomb, atomic warfare ) .
The inclination to utilize proficient imagination is increasing in every linguistic communication, therefore the look to trip off in concatenation reaction
is about international. Some looks tend to go slightly disused: the English used to speak of people being galvanized into activity,
or traveling full steam in front
but the phrases sound out dated now.
The alterations of impressions and things named go manus in manus. As they are conditioned by alterations in the economic, societal, political and cultu & # 173 ; ral history of the people, the extralinguistic causes of semantic alteration might be handily subdivided in conformity with these. Social rela & # 173 ; tionships are at work in the instances of lift and pejoration of intending discussed in the old subdivision where the attitude of the upper categories to their societal inferiors determined the strengthening of emotional tone among the semantic constituents of the word.
Euphemisms may be dictated by promotion demands & # 8212 ; hence ready-
and off-the-rack apparels
alternatively of ready-made.
The influence of mass-advertising on linguistic communication is turning ; it is felt in every degree of the linguistic communication. Inventions possible in advertisement are of many different types. A sort of orange juice, for case, is called Tango.
The justifica & # 173 ; tion of the name is given in the advertisement text as follows: Get this differ & # 173 ;
ent savoring Sparkling Tango. Tell you why: made from whole oranges. Taste those oranges. Taste the nip in Tango. Tingling nip, bubbles
& # 8212 ; flickers. You drink it straight. Goes down great. Taste the nip in Tango. New Sparkling Tango.
The reader will see for himself how many expres & # 173 ; sive intensions are introduced by the salesman in this commercial name in an attempt to pull the purchaser ‘s attending.
Economic causes are evidently at work in the semantic development O! the word wealth.
It foremost meant ‘well-being ‘ , ‘happiness ‘ from wale
from OE wela
This original significance is preserved in the compounds commonwealth
and common good.
The present significance became possible due to the function played by money both in feudal and businessperson society. The main wealth of the early dwellers of Europe being the cowss, OE feoh
agencies both ‘cattle ‘ and ‘money ‘ , likewise Goth faihu ;
meant ‘cattle ‘ and pecunia
meant ‘money ‘ . ME fee-house
is both a cattle-shed and a exchequer. The contemporary English fee
most often means the monetary value paid for services to a attorney or a doctor. It appears to develop jointly from the above mentioned OE feoh
and the Anglo-French iron, fie,
likely of the same beginning, intending ‘a recompense ‘ and ‘a feudal term of office ‘ . This modern significance is obvious in the undermentioned illustration: Doctors of the uttermost Fame/Were called at one time ; but when they came/ They answered as they took their fees, / “ There is no remedy for this disease. ”
( BELLOC )
We have dialled in item with assorted types of semantic alteration. This is necessary non merely because of the involvement the assorted instances present in themselves but besides because a thorough cognition of these possibilities helps one to understand the semantic construction of English words at the present phase of their development. The development and alteration of the semantic construction of a word is ever a beginning of qualitative and quantitative development of the vocabulary.
The changeless development of industry, agribusiness, trade and trans & # 173 ; port bring into being new objects and new impressions. Wordss to call them are either borrowed or created from stuff already bing in the local area network & # 173 ; guage and it frequently happens that new significances are therefore acquired by old words.
1. Rinaburg R. & # 8220 ; A class in Modern English & # 8221 ; . Moscow 1976.
2. Griberg S. I. & # 8220 ; Exercises in Modern English & # 8221 ; . Moscow 1980.
3. Antrushina. & # 8220 ; English Lexicology & # 8221 ; . 1985.
4. Kunin A. & # 8220 ; English Lexicology & # 8221 ; Moscow 1972.
5. Mednikova E. M. & # 8220 ; Seminars in English Lexicology & # 8221 ; Moscow & # 8220 ; Vyshaja shkola & # 8221 ; 1978.
6. Cruise. & # 8220 ; Lexical semantic & # 8221 ; Cambridge University imperativeness 1995.
7. & # 8220 ; English Word Formation & # 8221 ; Cambridge University imperativeness 1996.