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273.Лукина Л.В.English Lexicology.Лексикология английского языка

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Л.В. Лукина
English Lexicology
Лексикология английского языка.
Теория и практика
Учебно-методическое пособие
Воронеж 2011
2
МИНИСТЕРСТВО ОБРАЗОВАНИЯ И НАУКИ РОССИЙСКОЙ ФЕДЕРАЦИИ
Государственное образовательное учреждение высшего
профессионального образования
Воронежский государственный архитектурно-строительный
университет
Л.В. Лукина
English Lexicology
Лексикология английского языка.
Теория и практика
Учебно-методическое пособие
Рекомендовано в качестве учебного пособия
редакционно-издательским советом Воронежского государственного
архитектурно-строительного университета для студентов
специальности 620100 – «Переводчик в сфере профессиональной
коммуникации»
(третий уровень высшего профессионального образования)
Воронеж 2011
3
УДК 802.0:801.3(07)
ББК 81.2 – 3 Англ.я7
Л647
Рецензенты:
кафедра иностранных языков Воронежского филиала Московского
гуманитарно-экономического института;
М.А. Стернина, доктор филол. наук, проф. кафедры английского языка
естественнонаучных факультетов Воронежского государственного
университета
Л647
Лукина, Л.В.
English Lexicology. Лексикология английского языка. Теория
и практика: учеб.-метод. пособие для ПСПК / Л.В. Лукина;
Воронеж. гос. арх.-строит. ун.-т. – Воронеж, 2011. – 104 с.
Данное учебно-методическое пособие разработано в соответствии с действующими
государственными стандартами и программой по данному курсу. Цель пособия –
познакомить студентов с основными проблемами лексикологии и лексикографии
применительно к материалу английского языка.
Пособие содержит необходимые для изучения лексикологии английского языка
теоретический и практический материалы: лекции, планы семинарских занятий,
практические задания разной степени сложности, темы презентаций, определения
основных понятий и терминов, контрольные вопросы и тесты для самостоятельной
оценки качества освоения дисциплины.
Учебное пособие предназначено для студентов, занимающихся по программе
«Переводчик в сфере профессиональной коммуникации». Материал пособия рассчитан
для активного усвоения и самостоятельного изучения лексикологии английского языка и
рассчитано на 77 часов (36 часов аудиторных занятий и 41 час самостоятельной
работы).
Ил. 6. Библиогр.: 14 назв.
УДК 802.0:801.3(07)
ББК 81.2 – 3 Англ.я7
ISBN 978-5-89040-322-3
© Лукина Л.В., 2011
© Воронежский государственный
архитектурно-строительный
университет, 2011
4
ВВЕДЕНИЕ
Учебное пособие «Лексикология английского языка» предназначено
для студентов, обучающихся по программе дополнительной
квалификации «Переводчик в сфере профессиональной коммуникации» и
составлено в соответствии с действующими государственными
стандартами и программой по данному курсу.
Пособие в систематизированном виде содержит необходимые для
изучения курса лексикологии английского языка материалы: лекции,
определения основных понятий и терминов, планы семинарских занятий,
практические задания разной степени сложности, темы презентаций,
контрольные вопросы и тесты для самостоятельной оценки качества
освоения дисциплины. Оно может быть использовано как для аудиторной,
так и для самостоятельной работы студентов.
Цель пособия «Лексикология английского языка» заключается в том,
чтобы сформировать у студентов научное представление о словарном
составе английского языка в его современном состоянии и историческом
развитии, показать связь лексикологии с другими лингвистическими
дисциплинами и познакомить с путями пополнения словарного состава
посредством словообразования, заимствования, семантического развития
слов.
Основным объектом лексикологии является слово, которое
рассматривается в единстве всех своих характеристик: фонетических,
грамматических, семантических. Освоение курса лексикологии
предполагает знания и умения, приобретенные студентами в ходе изучения
практического курса английского языка, а также таких теоретических
дисциплин, как «Введение в языкознание», «Теоретическая фонетика» и
др. В свою очередь курс лексикологии позволяет подготовить студентов к
дальнейшему овладению теорией языка и научно-исследовательской
работе (подготовке сообщений, докладов и презентаций, написанию
рефератов, курсовых и дипломных работ), а также способствует развитию
лингвистической
и
профессиональной
компетенции
будущего
специалиста.
Данное учебное пособие состоит из 4-х разделов (Part), включающих
9 лекций (Lecture) и 9 семинарских занятий (Seminar). Заключительная
часть пособия (Part V) содержит вопросы для повторения и подготовки к
сдаче зачета, а также тест для самоконтроля.
Курс «Лексикология английского языка» объемом 36 часов изучается в
течение одного семестра на 2-м курсе. На лекции отводится 18 часов, на
семинарские занятия также – 18 часов. Изучение курса завершается
зачетом.
Лексикология позволит студентам познакомиться с лексическим
составом английского языка в разных аспектах, понять сложности
семантического развития слов и будет способствовать совершенствованию
навыков работы со словарями разных типов.
5
PART ONE
LECTURE 1
LEXICOLOGY AS A BRANCH OF LINGUISTICS
What is it – Modern English Lexicology?
It is the science of the English word;
It’s an important branch of general philology,
And it’s OK to give it a good thought.
It makes you a good expert in morphology
Because it treats the structure of the word.
In short, it turns you into a linguistic prodigy
For you just grasp the nature of the WORD!
L. Kulgavova
--------------------------------------------------------------------------1. General characteristics of Lexicology.
2. Branches of Lexicology.
3. The connection of Lexicology with other branches of Linguistics.
4. Synchronic and Diachronic Lexicology.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1. General characteristics of Lexicology
The term “lexicology” is of Greek origin (from lexis – “word” + logos –
“science, learning”). Lexicology is a branch of linguistics which deals with
words. It is a study of words and word-groups. All the words of a language
make up its vocabulary or lexicon. The term “vocabulary” is used to denote the
system of words and word-groups that the language possesses. To study the
6
lexicon of English is to study how words are formed, how they have developed,
how they are used, how they relate in meaning to each other, and how they are
handled in dictionaries.
Thus, lexicology deals with the vocabulary and characteristic features of words
and word-groups.
The word is the main smallest lexical unit of a language resulting from the
association of a group of sounds with a meaning. The word is used in
grammatical functions characteristic of it.
The term “word-group” denotes a group of words that exists in the language as
a ready-made unit, has the unity of meaning and of syntactical function (e.g. the
word-group “as loose as a goose” means “clumsy” and is used in a sentence as a
predicative – He is as loose as a goose.).
So, meaning is the central problem of Lexicology. Lexicology helps to enrich
vocabulary. One of the important tasks of Lexicology is the study of the
vocabulary as a system.
There can be distinguished General Lexicology and Special Lexicology.
General Lexicology is concerned with the study of vocabulary irrespective of
the specific features of any particular language. Special Lexicology studies the
vocabulary of a particular language (English, Russian, German, French, etc.).
2. Branches of Lexicology
The sub-branches of Lexicology are: etymology, word-formation, semantics,
phraseology, lexicography, etc., each of which has its own aim of study, its own
object of investigation, and its own methods of linguistic research.
80 per cent of English vocabulary is foreign-born. For example, Arabic words
that have passed into English: admiral, magazine, camel, giraffe, cotton, apricot,
candy, coffee, orange, rice, sugar, sofa.
7
English vocabulary has words in common with every language in Europe:
German, Dutch, Flemish, Danish, Swedish, French, Italian, Portuguese, and
Spanish.
The list of a sample of borrowings into English:
French: army, elite, raffle.
Latin: cup, fork, pound, vice versa.
Greek: synonymy, chemistry, physics.
Spanish: junta, siesta, cigar.
German: rucksack, hamburger, seminar.
Scandinavian languages: law, saga, ski, them, they, their.
Italian: piano, soprano, confetti, spaghetti.
South Asian languages: bungalow, jungle, sandal, thing.
Dutch: cruise, dock, yacht.
Chinese: mandarin, tea.
Japanese: kimono, karate, judo.
In a survey of the 1,000 most frequently used words in English, it was found that
only 61.7 per cent had old English origin. The other 38.3 per cent were
borrowed from other languages: 30.9 per cent French, 2.9 per cent Latin, 1.7 per
cent Scandinavian, 1.3 per cent mixed, and 0.3 per cent German and Dutch.
Thus, a branch of lexicology – etymology discovers earlier meanings of words
and their origin.
By the native element we mean words which were not borrowed from other
languages. The number of native words is rather small, about 25%-30%. About
70% of words are borrowed. This fact gave ground to the assumption that
English is a Romanic-Germanic language. English is an analytical language. It
tends to bring its units into complexes, rather than use morphological
combination, which is typical of synthetic of flexion languages (Russian,
French, German).
A word can consist of a prefix, a base, and a suffix. A prefix can be added to the
front of the word or base, while a suffix can be added to the end. Their function
8
is to change the meaning of the word. Many prefixes and suffixes come from
Latin or Greek.
Thus, the study of the morphology of the word, or the parts of a word, and the
patterns on which a language builds new words is the subject matter of wordformation.
English language is the richest in vocabulary of all the world’s languages (which
now number some 2,700). The Oxford English Dictionary lists about 500,000
words; and a half million technical and scientific terms remain uncatalogued.
German has a vocabulary of about 185,000 words and French fewer than
100,000.
Lexicography is also a branch of lexicology which studies dictionary making.
In a dictionary you can find words or units of meaning. However, in a serious
study of the lexicon the term lexeme is used (the term lexeme was introduced by
Benjamin Lee Whorf in 1938). A lexeme is a unit of lexical meaning.
Thus, Lexicology deals with words, their meaning and vocabulary structure.
The area of Lexicology dealing with the study of meaning of the word is called
Semantics.
A word may be studied in comparison with other words of similar meaning
synonymy (e.g. work – labour – job); of opposite meaning antonymy (e.g. busy
– idle); of different functional styles (e.g. father, официальный – dad,
разговорный ; man – guy – fellow).
Phraseology is the branch of lexicology specializing in word-groups which are
characterized by stability of structure and transferred meaning (e.g. take the bull
by the horns – действовать решительно, брать быка за рога; rain like cats
and dogs – сильный дождь, льет как из ведра).
3. The connection of Lexicology with other branches of Linguistics
Lexicology is closely connected with other branches of Linguistics. Phonetics
investigates the phonetic structure of language and is concerned with the study
9
of the outer sound-form of the word. If we change some sounds in the word, we
receive the word with the different meaning (sheep – ship; cow – bow).
Grammar is the study of the grammatical structure of the language. The
grammatical form of the word is changed and the meaning is changed as well
(book – books; work – works; arm – arms). The part of speech can be changed
as well: pocket – to pocket; name – to name.
There is also a close relationship between lexicology and Stylistics which is
concerned with a study of functions and styles of languages.
Lexicology connects with the History of Language. For example, in old
English the word “stool” meant any kind of seats. Later on the French borrowing
– the word “chair” came and the word “stool” changed its meaning. Now
“stool” means the seat without back.
4. Synchronic and Diachronic Lexicology
The vocabulary can be studied by means of two approaches: descriptive and
historical. Historical Lexicology deals with the development of the vocabulary,
the origin of words and word-groups, and the changes of their sound form and
meaning in course of time. Descriptive Lexicology is concerned with the
vocabulary of a language at the given stage of its development. The two
approaches should not be set one against the other. In fact, they are
interconnected and interrelated because every linguistic structure and system
exists in a state of constant development. The synchronic state of a language
system is a result of a long process of linguistic evaluation.
Lexicology presents a wide area of knowledge.
Contrastive and Comparative Lexicology study the correlation between
vocabularies of two or more languages and find out the correspondences
between the vocabulary units of the languages under comparison.
Comparative Lexicology studies closely relative languages from the point of
view of their identity and differentiation.
10
Contrastive Lexicology attempts to find out similarities and differences in both
related and non-related languages. Its task is a detailed comparison of the
structure of a native and a target language. Every language classifies reality in
its own way by means of vocabulary units. In English, for example, there is no
equivalent for word “сутки”. In English two words “arm and hand” are used to
denote the word “рука”.
In contrastive analysis the smallest units of meaning are sememes and semes.
For example, in the lexical unit “woman” several semes may be singled out,
such as human, female, adult. The analysis of the word “girl” will show the
following semes: human, female, young. The last component of the two words
differentiates them and makes impossible to mix up the words.
A word has not only one meaning. The words “to like, to love, to adore” denote
positive feelings. But each of them gives additional information on the so-called
strength of feeling. This is the connotational aspect which shows semantic
differential.
Applied lexicology deals with translation, lexicography, pragmatics of speech.
SEMINAR 1
KEY TERMS
lexicology
lexeme
language
diachrony
vocabulary
synchrony
word
word-formation
word-group
seme
etymology
contrastive lexicology
11
TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION AND EXERCISES
1. Lexicology as a branch of linguistics. Its aims and tasks. Its practical and
theoretical value.
2. The connection of Lexicology with other branches of linguistics.
3. Lexical units. The word as a fundamental unit of the language.
4. Borrowings in English.
5. The diachronic and the synchronic approaches to the study of the
vocabulary.
6. Branches of lexicology. The main problems of lexicology.
1. Translate the following into Russian. State from what languages they are
borrowed:
kindergarten, tête-à-tête, Blitzkrieg, persona grata, leitmotiv, primadonna,
Nazi, sputnik, ballet, football.
2. The words below are Latin words in their origin, list as many other words
as you can with that word part.
recollection
generation
preservationist
quantifiable
Test
1. The term “lexicology” is of
a) Greek origin
b) Latin origin
c) French origin
d) German origin
2. The central problem of lexicology is
a) word
b) sentence
c) sound
construction
confluence
12
d) meaning
3. The two main approaches in studying language are
a) special and descriptive
b) historical and comparative
c) diachronic and synchronic
d) contrastive and general
4. The word-group “as loose as a goose” means
a) kind
b) stupid
c) greedy
d) clumsy
5. In contrastive analysis the smallest unit of meaning is
a) seme
b) lexeme
c) word
d) word-group
6. English is
a) a Germanic language
b) a Scandinavian language
c) a Romanic-Germanic language
d) a Romanic language
7. Seme is:
a) the biggest element of the lexical meaning
b) the grammatical characteristics
c) a suffix of some nouns
d) the smallest element of lexical meaning
13
LECTURE 2
WORD STRUCTURE AND WORD MEANING
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1. Lexical units. The word as a fundamental unit of the language.
2. Components of the word meaning.
3. Word-Meaning and Motivation.
4. Types of Meaning.
1. Lexical units. The word as a fundamental unit of the language
The word is the basic unit of language system (a linguistic unit), the largest on
the morphologic and the smallest on the syntactic plane of linguistic analysis.
The word is a unity of meaning and form.
The theory of the word was created by V.V.Vinogradov, A.I. Smirnitsky.
The branch of lexicology dealing with the study of meaning of the word is called
Semantics. The term semantics is originated from Greek word “semantikos”
meaning “significant”.
The morpheme is the smallest indivisible meaningful language unit. It’s
different from the word as it can’t function in a sentence alone. It’s always a
part of the word, where it combines with other morphemes. Let’s compare
the examples: 1) heart – heartless (новое слово); 2) hearty – heartier –
heartiest (формы степени сравнения прилагательного). In the first
example a new word is formed. In the second – new forms the word are
formed. These morphemes, which make up new words, are called lexical
morphemes. In the second example the morphemes are grammatical. They
are not studying in the lexicology. The lexical morphemes may be roots and
affixation (affixes morphemes). Root morphemes are the semantic centre of
the word. As for affixes, they can be prefixes and suffixes. Prefixes stand in
front of the root. Suffixes follow the root. Morphemes can be free and
14
bound. Root morphemes are free. They coincide with independent words,
and can function in the sentence by themselves, e.g. boyish (boy можно
употреблять отдельно). Affixes are bound morphemes. They can’t function
in the sentence alone. But there are semi-suffixes: -like,-able. They can be
both suffices and independent words (e.g. eat, eatable- съедобный; marblelike - мраморовидный).
Firstly, the word is a unit of speech which serves the purposes of human
communication. Thus, the word can be defined as a unit of communication.
Secondly, the word can be defined as the total of the sounds which comprise
it.
Thirdly, the word has several characteristics. The internal and external
structures of the word can be distinguished. The internal structure of the
word is its meaning. The external structure of the word is its morphological
structure. For example, in the word post-impressionists the following
morphemes (post-, im-) are the prefixes; the root – press; the noun-forming
suffixes are -ion, -ist and the grammatical suffix of plurality –s. All these
morphemes constitute the external structure of the word post-impressionists.
2. Components of the word meaning
The word is one of the fundamental units of language. It is a unity of form and
content (or meaning). The definition of a word is one of the most difficult in
linguistics, because the simplest word has many different aspects: a sound fo rm,
its morphological structure, it may occur in different word-forms and have
various meanings. Instead of the term “word” some linguists prefer the terms
“lexical unit”, “lexical item” or “lexeme”.
There are 2 types of word meaning in words: a) the grammatical meaning; b)
the lexical meaning. Such word forms as “girls”, “tables”, “students” though
denoting widely different objects of reality have something in common. This
common element is the grammatical meaning of plurality which can be
15
found in all of them. Thus, the grammatical meaning is the component of
meaning in the word forms.
There is another component of meaning which is identical in all the forms of
the word. Thus, e.g. the word-forms go, goes, went, going, gone possess
different grammatical meanings of tense, person and so on, but in each of
these forms we find one and the same semantic component denoting the
process of movement. This is the lexical meaning of the word which may be
described as the component of meaning. Both lexical and grammatical
meanings make up the word meaning. The two main types of word-meaning
are the grammatical and the lexical meanings found in all words. The
interrelation of these two types of meaning may be different in different
groups of words. Among the word’s various characteristics, meaning is the
most important.
3. Word-Meaning and Motivation
Semantics is the study of word meanings – dealing with the relationship
between symbols (words, signs, etc.) and what they refer to (called
“referents”) – and of behaviour in reaction to non-verbal symbols and verbal
symbols (words).
The relationships between referent (object, etc. denoted by the word)
(референт – объект действительности), concept (значение слова –
отражение в мозгу человека объекта, когда устанавливается связь
между лингвистической формой и содержанием), and word are
traditionally represented by Ogden-Richards Triangle. By the “symbol or
sound-form” here is meant the word; thought or reference is “concept”. The
dotted line suggests that there is no immediate relation between word and
referent; it is established only through the concept.
16
Значение слова – это
отражение в мозгу человека объекта, когда
устанавливается связь между лингвистической формой и содержанием.
Every word has two aspects: the outer aspect (its sound form) and the inner
aspect (its meaning). The lexical meaning of a word is the realization of a notion
by means of a definite language system. A word is a language unit, while a
notion is a unit of thinking. A notion denotes the reflection in the mind of real
objects and phenomena in their essential features and relations. Word meaning
may be represented as a model (a triangle). The three components of the model
are: referent, concept and linguistic form (sign). Linguistic form is a word,
referent – a thing, concept – meaning. The linguistic form is connected with the
concept. Through this concept with an object of reality which is the referent. The
dotted line means that there is no direct connection between the linguistic form
(word) and referent: it is established only through the concept. On the other
hand, when we hear a spoken word or read a printed word the corresponding
concept springs into mind. A concept (i.e. mental phenomenon) is converted into
a word (i.e. linguistic phenomenon) and the reverse process by which a heard or
a printed word is converted into a mental picture.
So, word meaning is the reverberation in the human mind object of reality which
becomes a fact of language when a constant connection is established between
this reverberation and a certain linguistic form.
How to define lexical meaning? For example, a) he goes, sleeps, cries; b) go,
goes, went, going. In the first example grammatical meaning is the same. In the
17
second example lexical meaning is the same, i.e. the meaning which we find in
all the forms of the word (the meaning of motion).
There are cases when we can observe a direct connection between the structural
pattern of the word and its meaning. There are three types of motivation: a)
phonetic, b) morphological, c) semantic.
Phonetic motivation when there is a certain similarity between the sounds of a
word
and
the
sounds
referred
to
by
the
meaning
of
a
word,
(звукоподражательные слова: bang , whistle, ding-dong, buzz, cuckoo, splash).
Morphological motivation when it is possible to guess the meaning of a word
from its parts (e.g. the word endless). It is the relationship between morphemic
structure and meaning. The main criterion in morphological motivation is the
relationship between morphemes. All one-morpheme words, (e.g. sing, tell, eat)
are by definition non-motivated. In words composed of more than one
morpheme the carrier of the word-meaning is the combined meaning of the
component morphemes and the meaning of the structural pattern of the word.
The words singer, rewrite, eatable are motivated and both the lexical meaning
of the component morphemes and the meaning of the pattern are transparent. It
should be noted that the degree of motivation may be different. Between the
complete motivation and lack of motivation, there exist various grades of partial
motivation. The word endless, e.g., is completely motivated as both the lexical
meaning of the component morphemes and the meaning of the pattern is
perfectly transparent. The word cranberry is partially motivated because of the
absence of the lexical meaning in the morpheme cran-.
Semantic motivation is based on the coexistence of direct and figurative
meaning of the same word, e.g. foot- a lower part of smth; part of a body; (the
foot of the mountain).
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4. Types of Meaning
Lexical meaning possesses denotational and connotational components. As
was mentioned above one of the functions of words is to denote things,
concepts and so on. Users of a language cannot have any knowledge of the
objects or phenomena of the real world around them unless this knowledge is
embodied in words which have essentially the same meaning for all speakers
of that language. This is the d e n o t a t i o n a l m e a n i n g , i.e. that
component of the lexical meaning which makes communication possible.
The second component of the lexical meaning is the c o n n o t a t i o n a l
c o m p o n e n t , i.e. the emotive charge and the stylistic value of the
word. It may be negative, positive, neutral, common, poetic, archaic, terms,
slang, vulgar words. Words contain an element of emotive evaluation as part
of the connotational meaning; e.g. synonyms large, big, tremendous and like,
love, adore have the difference in the emotive charge. The emotive charge of
the words tremendous, and adore is heavier than that of the words large and
like. This does not depend on the “feeling” of the individual speaker but is
true for all speakers of English. The colloquial words daddy, mammy are
more emotional than the neutral father, mother.
Words differ not only in their emotive charge but also in their stylistic reference.
Stylistically words can be roughly subdivided into literary, neutral and
colloquial layers. The greater part of the literary layer of Modern English
vocabulary are words of general use, possessing no specific stylistic reference
and known as neutral words. Against the background of neutral words we can
distinguish two major subgroups — standard colloquial words and literary or
bookish words. This may be best illustrated by comparing words almost
identical in their denotational meaning, e. g., “parent — father — dad”. In
comparison with the word father which is stylistically neutral, dad stands out as
colloquial and parent is felt as bookish.
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Specific subgroups may be singled out such as 1) terms or scientific words, e.
g., renaissance, genocide, teletype; 2) poetic words and archaisms, e.g.,
whilome — “formerly”, aught — “anything”, ere — “before”, albeit —
“although”, fare — “walk”, nay — “no”; 3) barbarisms and foreign words,
e.g., bon mot — “a clever or witty saying’, apropos, faux pas, bouquet.
The colloquial words may be subdivided into: 1) slang, i.e. words which are
often regarded as a violation of the norms of Standard English, e.g. governor for
“father”, missus for “wife”, a gag for “a joke”; 2) professionalisms, i.e. words
used in narrow groups bound by the same occupation, e.g., lab for “laboratory”,
hypo for “hypodermic syringe”, a buster for “a bomb”; 3) jargonisms, i.e.
words marked by their use within a particular social group and bearing a secret
and cryptic character, e.g. a sucker — “a person who is easily deceived”, a
squiffer — “a concertina”; 4) vulgarisms, i.e. coarse words that are not
generally used in public, e.g. bloody, hell, damn, shut up; 5) dialectical words,
e.g. lass, kirk (шотл.).
SEMINAR 2
KEY TERMS
meaning
semantics
referent
concept
denotation
connotation
lexical unit
motivation
neutral words
archaisms
morpheme
unit of communication
TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION AND EXERCISES
1. Semantics as the branch of lexicology. Its aims and tasks.
2. The word and its characteristics.
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3. The morpheme as the smallest meaningful language unit.
4. Word and meaning.
5. Lexical meaning and notion.
6. Three types of motivation.
7. Different approaches to meaning. Denotational and connotational
meanings of a word.
1. Find out the difference in the denotational meaning of the words:
appreciate, value, cherish.
2. Find out the difference in the connotational meaning of the words:
beautiful, beauteous.
3. Comment on the connotations the following expressions convey: an ugly
duckling, the Troyan horse, crocodile tears, a swan song, Achilles’ heel.
Test
1. Linguists try to explain the word-meaning through:
a) semantic triangle
b) definition of a word
c) grammatical forms
d) pronunciation
2. Morpheme is:
a) the main unit of lexical system
b) the smallest language unit which can stand alone as a complete
utterance
c) the smallest meaningful language unit
d) a group of words that exists in the language as a ready-made unit
3. Archaisms are words which:
a) ousted some new words
b) are no longer used in everyday speech
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c) are used to express unimportance
d) are used instead of new meanings
4. Instead of the term “word” can be used the term
a) utterance
b) meaning
c) lexeme
d) morpheme
5. There are 2 types of word meaning in words:
a) grammatical and lexical
b) lexical and functional
c) grammatical and connotational
d) denotational and distinctive
6. Semantics is the study of
a) grammar
b) word meanings
c) phonetics
d) styles
LECTURE 3
SEMANTIC STRUCTURE OF THE WORD
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1. Types of context.
2. Word-meaning in syntagmatics and paradigmatics.
3. Polysemy and ways of its development.
4. Types of lexical meaning.
5. Types of polysemy.
6. Types of semantic changes.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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1. Types of context
The modern approach to Semantics is based on the assumption that the inner
form (or facet) of the word (i.e. its meaning) presents a structure, which is called
the semantic structure of the word.
Each word has a hard core of meaning which stable, but can be modified by the
context within certain limits. There can be distinguished two types of context:
linguistic (verbal) and extra linguistic (non-verbal). Linguistic (verbal) contexts
comprise lexical and grammatical contexts and are opposed to extra-linguistic
(non-verbal) contexts. In extra-linguistic contexts the meaning of the word is
determined not only by linguistic factors but also by the actual speech situation
in which the word is used. Context is a good and reliable key to the meaning of
the word.
The context can be lexical (the noun “mouth” – 1) opening through which
people or animals take food in; 2) opening or outlet of bag, cave, river);
grammatical (the verb “make” – 1) construct, produce something – She made
coffee for us; 2) compel, cause – They made me tell the story); and mixed –
lexico-grammatical.
2. Word-meaning in syntagmatics and paradigmatics
Linguistic relations of words are basically of two main types: syntagmatic and
paradigmatic.
Syntagmatic relations define the meaning the word possesses when it is used in
combination with other words in the flow of speech. For example, compare the
meaning of the verb to get in he got a letter; he got tired; he got to London and
he could not get the piano through the door.
Paradigmatic relations are those that exist between individual lexical items
which make up one of the subgroups of vocabulary items, e.g. sets of synonyms,
lexico-semantic groups, etc.
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Paradigmatic relations define the word-meaning through its interrelation with
other members of the subgroup. For example, the meaning of the verb to get can
be fully understood only in comparison with other items of the synonymic set:
get, obtain, receive, etc. (he got a letter; he received a letter; he obtained a
letter) Comparing the sentences we may conclude that an item in a sentence can
be usually substituted by one or more than one other items that have identical
part-of-speech meaning and similar though not identical lexical meaning.
3. Polysemy and ways of its development
Most words possess several meanings. A word having several meanings is called
polysemantic. Polysemy means that a word has two or more meaning.
The
word polysemy (from Greece “polus” – many and “sema” – meaning) means a
plurality of meanings.
If the word has only one meaning it’s called mono-semantic, these are mainly
scientific terms, such as hydrogen, molecule, synonym, some pronouns: this, my,
both, numerals.
Most English words are polysemantic, i.e. possess more than one meaning. The
actual number of meanings of the commonly used words ranges from five to
about a hundred. For example the word table (стол) has at least nine meanings
in Modern English: 1) a piece of furniture; 2) the people seated at a table; 3)
sing. the food put on a table, meals; 4) a thin flat piece of stone, metal, wood,
etc.; 5) pl. slabs of stone with words cut into them or written on them; 6) words
cut into slabs of stone (the ten tables – десять заповедей); 7) an orderly
arrangement of facts, figures, etc.; 8) part of a machine-tool on which the work
is put to be operated on; 9) a level area, a plateau. In polysemantic words,
however, we are faced not with the problem of analysis of individual meanings,
but primarily with the problem of the interrelation and interdependence of the
various meanings in the semantic structure of one and the same word. If we
compare the nine meanings of the English word table and the meanings of the
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Russian word стол, we shall easily observe not only the difference in meanings
but also the difference in the individual meanings.
стол
table
1. a piece of furniture
1. предмет обстановки
2. the people seated at a table
2. арх. застолица
3. the food put on a table, meals; cooking
3. пища (подаваемая на стол), еда
Note. This meaning is rare in Modern English.
Usually the word board (or cooking) is used.
(board and lodging, plain cooking)
Note. Commonly used, stylistically neutral.
(стол
и квартира, простой, сытный,
вегетарианский стол)
4. a flat slab of stone or board
4. плита
5. slabs of stone (with words written on them
or cut into them)
6. Bibl. Words cut into slabs of stone (the ten
tables).
7. an orderly arrangement of facts, figures,
etc.
8. part of a machine-tool
5. скрижали
9. a level area, plateau
9. плато
6. заповеди
7. таблица
8. планшайба
Meaning 1 (generally referred to as the main meaning) presents the centre of the
semantic structure of the word and holds a kind of dominance over other
meanings, whereas meanings 2-9 (called secondary meanings) are associated
with special circumstances, aspects and instances.
As can be seen, only one of the meanings and namely the central meaning “a
piece of furniture” may be described as identical. The denotational meaning ‘the
food put on the table’ although existing in the words of both languages has
different connotational components in each of them. The difference is still more
pronounced if we consider all the meanings of the Russian word стол, e.g.
“department, section, bureau” (адресный стол, стол заказов) not to be found
in the semantic structure of the English word table.
The wealth of expressive resources of a language largely depends on the degree
to which polysemy has developed in the language.
Polysemy is explained by the following: the word names an object of reality
according to some of its quality or characteristic of its object. Very often the
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quality of one object is identical with a quality of another object, because of this
one the same word is used to denote this object. For example, the word “glass”
has the meanings “стакан” and “зеркало”, they are interconnected because
both the object are made of the same material.
This very idea may be expressed differently: The world around us is varied and
its objects are many. The means of the language on the other hand are limited, so
one word denotes several objects.
The system of meanings of any polysemantic word develops gradually most
over the centuries as more and more new meanings are added to old ones. All
the meanings of the word taken together make up its semantic structure. As a
rule context shows us which of the meanings of the word is used. For example,
dull: a dull book (uninteresting); a dull student (slow in understanding, stupid);
dull weather (not clear); a dull sound (not loud or distinct); a dull knife (not
sharp); trade is dull (not active).
The meaning or meanings of polysemantic words are observed only in certain
contexts. This can be illustrated by analysing different lexical contexts in which
polysemantic words are used. For example, the adjective heavy in isolation is
understood as meaning “of great weight, weighty” (heavy load, heavy table).
When combined with the lexical group of words denoting natural phenomena
such as wind, storm, snow, etc., it means “striking, falling with force, abundant”
as can be seen from the contexts, (heavy rain, wind, snow, storm). In
combination with the words industry, artillery it has the meaning “the larger
kind of something” (heavy industry, heavy artillery).
A listener or a reader can misunderstand a word which is used in a certain
meaning.
Customer: I would like a book, please.
Bookseller: Something light?
Customer: That doesn’t matter. I have my car with me.
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In this conversation the bookseller means one thing and the customer takes the
word in its other meaning. The customer takes the adjective “light” in the literal
sense whereas the bookseller uses the word in its figurative meaning “not
serious; entertaining”.
4. Types of lexical meaning
The meaning is direct or nominative when it nominates the object without the
help of context, in isolation, i.e., in one word sentences for example the “Rain”.
Take, for example, the noun “screen”. We find it in its direct meaning when it
names “a movable piece of furniture” used to hide something or protect
somebody, as in case of “fire screen” placed in front of a fireplace. The
meaning is figurative when the word is applied to anything which protects by
hiding, “be in smoke screen”. We define this meaning as figurative comparing it
to the first that we called direct.
There are several types of lexical meaning.
1) direct (also nominative, primary, proper) meaning. It characterises an
object without the help of the context, in isolation e.g. sweet (sugar, honey,
cake);
2) indirect (also called figurative, transferred, secondary, derived) meaning
is the meaning formed from the direct meaning according to the models of
semantic derivation. It is realised only in definite contexts. The noun “eye” has
direct meaning “the organ with which one sees” and indirect meaning “the hole
in a needle through which the thread passes” – “the eye of a needle”; e.g. sweet
(face, voice);
3) grammatically bound meaning means that the meaning of the word depends
on the syntactical construction in which it is used, e.g. He is ill. He has ill
manners.
In the first example the word “ill” has the meaning “больной, нездоровый”. In
the second example it has the meaning of “плохой – bad”.
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4) lexically bound meaning means that the meaning of the word depends on its
combinability,
e.g.
“heavy” has
different meanings
in the following
combinations: heavy bag, heavy rain, heavy crops, heavy guns.
5) phraseologically bound meaning is lexically or grammatically bound
meaning, which are used in a limited field, e.g. –Would you like a drink? – I’d
love to (“love” means “Yes!”).
5. Types of polysemy
There are radial polysemy, chain polysemy and radial-chain polysemy.
Radial polysemy (or radiation) is the type of polysemy in which the primary
meaning of a word stands in the center and the secondary meanings proceed out
of it like rays. Each secondary meaning can be traced to the primary meaning. In
the word tube, the primary meaning is “a hollow round pipe of metal, glass,
rubber, etc., used for holding or carrying liquids, gases, etc.” (e.g. laboratory test
tubes). Each secondary meaning developed directly from this primary meaning:
2) “a small soft metal or plastic container with a screw cap, used for holding a
soft wet mixture, such as toothpaste, paint, etc., e.g. tubes of glue; 3) “a hollow
pipe or organ in the body”, e.g. bronchial, Eustachian tubes; 4) “a cathode ray
tube, i.e. a vacuum tube, e.g. the picture tube of a TV set; 5) “the underground
railway system in London”, e.g. to travel to work on the tube.
Chain polysemy (also concatenation) is the type of polysemy in which the
secondary meanings of a word develop like a chain. In such cases it may be
difficult to trace some meanings to the primary one. In the word crust the
primary meaning is “a hard outer part of bread”. Out of this meaning the
secondary meaning “a hard part of anything (a pie, a cake)” developed, then the
meaning “a harder layer over soft snow” was developed, then “a sullen gloomy
person” appeared, and the next step was the development of the meaning
“impudence”.
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Radial-chain (or mixed) polysemy is a combination of radial polysemy and
chain polysemy. The word floor has the following meanings: 1) “the lower
surface of a room, the surface on which one stands indoors”, e.g. sweep the
kitchen floor; 2) “the bottom of the sea, a cave, etc.”, e.g. the ocean floor; 3) “(in
cricket) the ground”, 4) “the part of a legislative assembly where members sit
and speak”, e.g. speak from the floor; 5) “the right to speak in an assembly or
meeting”, e.g. the floor is yours – you may present your argument; 6) “the
minimum level for prices, wages, etc.”; 7) “ a level or storey of a building”, e.g.
the office is on the first floor.
6. Types of semantic changes
There are many causes of semantic change:
1. Historical causes.
According to historical principle, everything changes, e.g. social institutions
change in the course of time, and the words also change. For example, changes
of lexical meaning of the noun “pen” goes back to the Latin word “penna” (a
feather of a bird). As people wrote with goose pens the name was transferred to
steel pens which were later on used for writing. Later any instrument for writing
was called “a pen”.
2. Psychological causes.
Taboos of various kinds. Words are replaced by other words; sometimes people
do not realize that they use euphemisms. For example, “lady’s room” instead of
“the lavatory”
3. Linguistic causes.
There is a tendency of a language to borrow a particular metaphorical
development of a word from another language.
Change of meaning is effected through association between the existing
meaning and the new. This association is generally based on the similarity of
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meaning (metaphor) or on the contiguity of meaning (metonymy).
There are several types of change of meaning: 1) metaphor; 2) metonymy; 3)
widening of meaning; 4) narrowing of meaning (сужение); 5) elevation
(улучшение); 6) degeneration.
1. Metaphor is a change of meaning based on the association of similarity
between two referents. In the head of a cabbage, metaphor is based on the
similarity of shape; in bookworm (a person who is fond of books), there is the
similarity of behaviour. Very often this similarity implies outward likeness, e.g.
the neck of a bottle, the tongues of the fire, the eye of the needle.
The name of the colour may be formed metaphorically from the name of the
object, e.g. the colour “orange” from “orange” (fruit – апельсин); “hazel –
карий” from “hazel” (nut – орех).
So, metaphor is a transfer of meaning on the basis of comparison. Herman Paul
points out that metaphor can be based on different types of similarity:
1) similarity of shape, e.g. head (of a cabbage), bottleneck, teeth (of a saw, a
comb);
2) similarity of position, e.g. foot ( of a page, of a mountain), head ( of a
procession);
3) similarity of function, behaviour e.g. a whip (an official in the British
Parliament whose duty is to see that members were present at the voting);
4) similarity of colour, e.g. orange, hazel, chestnut etc.
In some cases we have a complex similarity, e.g. the leg of a table has a
similarity to human leg in its shape, position and function.
Many metaphors are based on parts of human body, e.g. an eye of a needle,
arms and mouth of a river, head of an army, hands of the clock.
A special type of metaphor is when Proper names become common nouns, e.g.
philistine – a mercenary person, vandals – destructive people, a Don Juan – a
lover of many women etc.
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2. Metonymy is a change of meaning based on the association of contiguity
(близость); the semantic process of associating two referents, one of which
makes part of the other or is connected with it in some other way. The
associations between objects are different. There are various models of
metonymy, e.g. material > object made from this material: glass – a glass; place
> people occupying it: chair – the chair (the chairperson); inventor > invented
object: Watt James (Scottish engineer and inventor) – watt (a unit of power). For
example, the name of the place may be used as the name of the people in it
(ассоциация по пространству). (The house were against it – члены палаты
были против).
Thus, metonymy is a transfer of the meaning on the basis of contiguity. There
are different types of metonymy:
1) the material of which an object is made may become the name of the object,
e.g. a glass, boards, iron etc;
2) the name of the place may become the name of the people or of an object
placed there, e.g. the House – members of Parliament, Fleet Street – bourgeois
press, the White House – the Administration of the USA etc;
3) names of musical instruments may become names of musicians, e.g. the
violin, the saxophone;
4) the name of some person may become a common noun, e.g. “boycott” was
originally the name of the Irish family who were so much disliked by their
neighbours that they did not mix with them; “sandwich” was named after Lord
Sandwich who was a gambler. He did not want to interrupt his game and had his
food brought to him while he was playing cards between two slices of bread not
to soil his fingers;
5) names of inventors very often become terms to denote things they invented,
e.g. “watt”, “om”, “rentgen” etc;
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6) geographical names can also become common nouns through metonymy,
e.g. holland (linen fabrics), Brussels (a special kind of carpets), china
(porcelain), astrakhan (a sheep fur) etc.
3. Widening of meaning is a kind of semantic change which makes the word
denote a wider variety of objects.
For example, “pipe” used to denote
“музыкальный инструмент” now – “трубка”; “to arrive” used to be
“высадиться”, now – “прибывать”.
4. Narrowing of meaning is a kind of semantic change which makes the word
denote a narrower variety of objects. For example, “meat” used to be “еда”, now
–“мясо”; “deer” used to be “любой зверь”, now – “олень”.
5. Elevation of meaning is a kind of semantic change which makes the meaning
developed in positive connotation which was absent in the first meaning. For
example, the word “knight” used to be “молодой воин”, now – “рыцарь”.
6. Degeneration of meaning is a kind of semantic change which makes the
meaning developed in negative connotation which was absent in the original
meaning. For example, “knave” used to denote “мальчик”, now it is a bad word
means “негодяй”.
These change of meaning reflex the changes that take place in our life.
Polysemy is a result of:
1) shifts in application (сдвиг в употреблении), e.g. adjective red: 1) red
ink (is really red); 2) red hair (рыжие); 3) red deer (благородный); 4)
red cabbage (краснокачанная); 5) red Indian (краснокожий);
2) specialization, e.g. partner (“a type of relationship between two or more
people” – the basic meaning); a business partner; a marriage partner; a
partner in crime;
3) metaphorical extension (a fundamental feature of any language), e.g. leaf
of a tree – leaf of a book; hands of a person – hands of a clock;
4) words can pick up the meanings from other dialects, languages and slang,
e.g. the word executive in British English denotes “one who acts under
32
direction of somebody” (исполнитель) whereas in American English – “a
manager”. Now American English meaning is more widely used.
SEMINAR 3
KEY TERMS
polysemy
context
mono-semantic
direct meaning
indirect meaning
syntagmatic relations
radiation
concatenation
metonymy
metaphor
paradigmatic relations mixed polysemy
TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION AND EXERCISES
1. Types and nature of semantic change.
2. Polysemy in English.
3. The semantic structure of words: polysemantic and mono-semantic words.
4. Syntagmatic and paradigmatic approaches.
5. Changes in the semantic structure of a word.
6. Classifications of meanings of the polysemantic word.
7. Types of polysemy.
1. State which of the words possesses wider polysemy and explain why:
man, fellow, change, joy, federation, order.
2. Compare the semantic structure of the following words: (a) slender and
skinny; (b) to stop and to cease.
3. Write out as many meanings of the following words as you can, consult a
dictionary: a ball, a sheet, right, a scandal, paper, a hall, a match, a
sentence, thing, a hand, a bench, a board, case.
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4. What are the meanings of the polysemantic words which are played upon
in the jokes?
a) The teacher was giving her class a test in natural history.
“Now, Tony”, she said, “tell me where the elephant is found”.
Tony thought a little and then answered: “The elephant is such a large
animal that it is hardly ever lost”.
b) Caller: “I wonder if I can see your mother, little boy. Is she engaged?”
Willie: “Engaged! She’s married.”
c) Pam: “Hasn’t Tom ever married?”
Beryl: “No, and I don’t think he intends to, because he’s studying for a
bachelor’s degree.”
d) “My grandpa lived to be ninety and never used glasses.”
“Well, lots of people prefer to drink from a bottle.”
e) “And how old are you, my little man?”
“I’m not old at all. I’m nearly new.”
f) Nelly: “Is the man your sister is going to marry – rich?”
Dick: “I don’t think so.”
Nelly: “What makes you think so?”
Dick: “Well, every time mother talks about the wedding father says
‘poor man’!”
5. Analyze the contexts in which the verb make is used and identify the
meanings of this word.
1. The carpenters made a bed.
2. She made her bed before breakfast.
3. He has made several films.
4. He made a fortune on the stock market.
5. She made him cry.
6. She made a good wife.
7. It’s my first holiday for two years so I’m going to make the most of it.
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8. She usually makes coffee for us.
Test
1. The word “polysemy” means:
a) secondary meaning of a word
b) connotational meaning
c) plurality of meanings
d) the process of semantic development
2. The causes of semantic changes can be:
a) phonological
b) morphological
c) specialised
d) extra-linguistic and linguistic
3. Metaphor is a transfer of the meaning on the basis of:
a) comparison
b) contiguity
c) similarity
d) oppositions
4. Metonymy is a transfer of the meaning on the basis of:
a) comparison
b) contiguity
c) similarity
d) oppositions
5. Find a mono-semantic word:
a) table
b) hydrogen
c) head
d) country
6. Which is the direct meaning of the polysemantic word “hand”?
a) factory or dockyard worker
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b) the pointer of a watch
c) side or direction
d) part of the human arm beyond the wrist
PART TWO
LECTURE 4
SEMANTIC RELATIONS OF WORDS
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1. Homonymy. Classifications of homonyms.
2. Sources of homonymy.
3. Synonyms. Classification of synonyms. Euphemisms.
4. Antonyms. Their classification.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1. Homonymy. Classifications of homonyms, their sources
Words and phrases can enter into a variety of semantic relations with each other.
There may be different ways of grouping and classifying words.
Homonymy is the sameness of form combined with the difference in meaning.
Homonyms are words which are identical in sound and spelling, or, at least, in
one of these aspects, but different in their meaning. For example, bank, n – a
shore; bank, n – an institution for receiving, lending, exchanging, and
safeguarding money; ball, n – a sphere, any spherical body; (It was a very good
ball. It was red.) ball, n – a large dancing party (It was a very good ball. I
danced till 3 in the morning.).
Modern English is exceptionally rich in homonymous words. It is held that
languages where short words abound have more homonyms than those where
longer words are prevalent. In etymological dictionary by W.W. Skeat we can
find 783 homonymic groups. From these 620 have two homonyms, 127 have
three homonyms.
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Full (or complete) homonyms are two (or more) words which coincide in all
their forms, e,g. blow, v – to send out a strong current of air; blow, v – to
produce flowers. Their forms are identical: blow – blows – blowing – blew –
blown.
Homonyms may be classified into proper (or perfect) and partial. Homonyms
proper are words which are identical in sound and spelling but different in
meaning, e.g. bit, n – a small piece or amount; bit, n – the smallest unit of
information that can be used by a computer; bit, v – past simple of bite.
Partial homonyms are words which coincide only in some of their forms, e.g.
lie, v – to have or put one’s body in a resting position on a horizontal surface
(with its forms lie –lies – lying – lay – lain) and lie, v – to make a statement one
knows to be untrue ( with its forms lie – lies – lying – lied – lied).
Homonyms may be also classified by the type of meaning into lexical, lexicogrammatical and grammatical homonyms.
Lexical homonyms are words which belong to the same part of speech but
differ in lexical meaning, e.g. birth, n – the act or fact of being born; berth, n –
a bed or bunk in a vessel or train usually narrow and fixed to a wall.
Lexico-grammatical homonyms are words which differ in their lexical and
grammatical meanings, e.g. bear, v (to support or hold up) – bear, n (an
animal); write, v – right, adj.
Grammatical homonyms are homonymous word-forms of one and the same
word differing in grammatical meaning, e.g. brothers - brother’s – brothers’
are grammatical homonyms. The two classifications: proper and partial homonyms
and lexical,
lexico-grammatical and
grammatical homonyms
in their
classification of homonyms all the three aspects: sound-form, graphic form and
meaning are taken into account.
Homonyms are classified into homographs and homophones. Homographs are
words identical in spelling, but different both in their sound-form and meaning,
e.g. bow, n [bou] — a piece of wood curved by a string and used for shooting
37
arrows, and bow, n [bau] — the bending of the head or body; tear, n [tia] — a
drop of water that comes from the eye, and tear, v [tea] — to pull apart by
force.
Homophones are words the same in sound but different both in spelling and in
meaning, e.g. sea, n – see, v – C (the name of a letter); son, n – sun, n.
“Waiter” – “Yes, sir”.
“What’s this?” – “It’s bean soup, sir”
“Never mind what it has been. I want to know what it is now”.
(bean, n and been, past perfect of to be are homophones).
2. Sources of homonymy
The main sources of homonyms are:
1) phonetic changes, e.g. night – knight;
2) borrowing, e.g. write, v – right, adj. (native origin) – rite, n (a Latin
borrowing);
3) shortening, e.g. fan, n – an enthusiastic admirer of some kind of sport or of an
actor, singer, etc. (is a shortening produced from “fanatic”) – fan, n – веер.
Very often homonyms appear as a result of split polysemy. That means that the
semantic connection between the meanings of the word is lost and some of the
meanings become independent words, homonyms. The meaning of a word can
change in the course of time.
3. Synonyms. Classification of synonyms. Euphemisms
Lexical units may also be classified by the criterion of semantic similarity and
semantic contrasts. The terms generally used to denote these two types of
semantic relations are synonymy and antonymy.
A synonym (Greek same + name) is a word different in sound-form but of
similar or identical meaning to one or more words in the same language. Fast
and quick are synonyms. We can say “a hard task” or “a difficult task”, because
38
hard and difficult are synonyms.
All languages contain synonyms. English is very rich in synonyms for the
historical reason; its vocabulary has come from two different sources, from
Anglo-Saxon on one hand and from French, Latin and Greek on the other. Word
borrowing, semantic change, and other processes keep going on all the time,
making English rich in synonyms. There are about 8,000 synonymic groups in
English.
There are no two absolutely identical words because connotations, ways of
usage are different. Polysemantic words cannot be synonymous in all their
meanings, e.g. to close – to finish, to close – to shut. “Words are seldom exactly
synonymous” (Dr. Johnson). Every word has its own history, motivation and
contexts. Synonyms are words that may be interchanged in some contexts.
So, we can not speak about complete meaning equivalents. We speak about
partial meaning equivalents. This type of equivalents expressed by words is
called synonymy. Synonymy enriches the language because they let the speaker
express different shades of meaning, e.g. to like – to love – to adore.
Synonyms are words which belong to the same part of speech and the same
thematic group.
Thematic group is a group of words which closed in meaning and covers a
certain part of extra linguistic reality. For example, adjectives brave,
courageous, heroic (храбрый, смелый, отважный) belong to one thematic
group.
Not all the words which belong to the same thematic group will be synonyms,
only those words, which belong to the same part of speech, may be synonyms.
After that we have to use the so-called semantic criterion. That means we have
to study the words in the dictionary, if they have a common semantic component
in their definition, they are really synonyms. For example, the verbs to tremble,
to shiver, to shudder (дрожать), to shiver and to shudder are explained through
the verb to tremble (to shiver means to tremble with cold; to shudder means to
39
tremble with fear or disgust). So, these verbs to shiver and to shudder are
synonyms, because they have common semantic components. The word to
tremble is the most general word and it’s called a dominant synonym.
Synonymic dominant is the central term of a thematic group possessing the
following characteristic features: 1) high frequency of usage; 2) broad general
meaning; 3) lack of connotations, i.e. stylistic neutrality; 4) it may substitute for
other synonyms at least in some contexts; 5) it is often used to define other
synonyms in dictionary definitions. For example, in the group strange – queer –
odd – quaint, the synonymic dominant is strange.
Synonyms are subdivided into different groups:
1. Total (or absolute) synonyms are extremely rare and coincide in all their
shades of meaning and in all their stylistic characteristics (e.g. wordbuilding – word-formation, бегемот – гиппопотам).
2. Ideographic synonyms are words bearing the same idea but not identical
in shades of meaning (e.g. change – alter – vary; understand – realize; to
ascent – to mount – to climb; look – appearance – complexion –
countenance. For instance, the verbs cry – weep – sob – wail are
ideographic synonyms. These verbs mean “to make inarticulate sounds of
grief, unhappiness, or pain”. Cry has the widest use and may be the result
of unhappiness, joy, etc. or, especially with babies, of physical
discomfort. Cry and weep both imply the shedding of tears, but cry more
strongly implies accompanying sound. In comparison with cry, weep can
suggest stronger emotions. Sob describes crying or a mixture of broken
speech and crying marked by irregular and noisy breathing. Wail indicates
long noisy crying in grief or complaint.
3. Dialectical synonyms are words belong to different varieties of the
language, e.g. lift (Br. E.) – elevator (Am. E.); autumn (Br. E.) – fall
(Am. E.).
40
4. Contextual synonyms are words which are similar in meaning only under
some specific contextual conditions. For example, the verbs to buy and to
get are not synonymous, but they are synonyms in the following
sentences: I’ll go to the shop and buy some bread. I’ll go to the shop and
get some bread.
Synonyms can reflect social usage, e.g. clever (neutral) – bright (only
speaking about younger people by older people) – brainy (is not used by
the higher educated people) – intelligent (positive connotation).
5. Stylistic synonyms are words differing in their stylistic characteristics,
e.g. sky (neutral) – welkin (bookish); head (neutral) – attic (slang); child
(neutral) – kid (colloquial) – infant (elevated).
Euphemism is a word which is thought to be less offensive or unpleasant than
another word. For example, intoxication is a euphemistic substitution for
drunkenness. The word to die (neutral) has the following euphemisms: to expire,
to pass away, to depart, to join the majority, to kick the bucket (colloquial);
pregnant – in the family way.
Several words with one and the same meaning can be brought together to make
description more vivid: save and sound, first and foremost, safe and secure,
stress and strain, by force and violence.
4. Antonyms. Their classification
The term antonymy (Greek opposite + name) is used for oppositeness of
meaning. Antonyms are two or more words of the same language belonging to
the same category of parts of speech, identical in style and nearly identical in
distribution, which have contrasting meaning, e.g. poor – rich, failure – success,
to exclude – to include, warmly – coolly, wide – narrow, old – young, big –
small, clean – dirty, produce – consume.
Most antonyms are adjectives, because qualitative characteristics are easily
compared and contrasted: high – low, strong – weak. Verbs take second place: to
41
lose – to find, to live – to die. Nouns are not rich in antonyms: friend – enemy,
good – evil.
Antonyms are subdivided into groups: a) root (or absolute) antonyms are
antonyms having different roots, e.g. day – night, late – early, ancient – modern,
bad – good; b) derivational antonyms are antonyms having the same root but
different affixes, e.g. like – dislike, useful – useless, logical – illogical, joyful –
joyless.
Like synonyms, antonyms with opposite meanings can be brought together:
more or less, back and forth, likes and dislikes, blow hot and cold, the pros and
cons, be bought and sold, more dead than alive, through thick and thin, a big
frog in a little pond, penny wise and pound foolish.
SEMINAR 4
KEY TERMS
homonymy
homophones
synonymy
antonymy
opposition
thematic group
euphemism
homographs
synonymic dominant
total synonym
root antonym
stylistic synonym
TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION AND EXERCISES
1. Homonyms. Sources of homonyms.
2. Classifications of homonyms.
3. Synonymy and synonymic patterns in the English language. Sources of
synonymy.
4. Features of the synonymic dominant.
5. Ideographic and stylistic synonyms. Euphemisms.
42
6. Antonyms and parts of speech. Classification of antonyms.
1. Consider the following sentences and find homonyms:
A penny is one cent. The soap has a nice scent. She sent me a letter.
I will buy a pen at the store. Our house is by the school.
My hair is brown and cut short. The little hare ran quickly into the forest.
I have only one apple in my basket. Our team won the game.
Please wait in line for lunch. She lost weight on her diet.
2. How many words that sound alike are there?
Of all the saws I ever saw saw I never saw a saw saw as that saw saws
(сколько я не видел, как пилят пилы, я никогда не видел, чтобы пила
пилила так, как пилит эта пила).
There are three words saw – пила (used 3 times), saw – пилить (3 times), saw –
видеть past simple (2 times).
3. Look up in a dictionary the words man and woman. Make a list of
synonyms for the word woman and for the word man.
4. Read the poem and consider the homonyms.
Homonymy
Some words have different meanings,
and yet they’re spelt the same.
A cricket is an insect,
to play it – it’s a game.
On every hand, in every land,
it’s thoroughly agreed,
the English language to explain
is very hard indeed.
Some people say that you’re a dear,
yet dear is far from cheap.
A jumper is a thing to wear,
a jumper has to leap.
A little journey is a trip,
a trip is when you fall.
It doesn’t mean you have to dance
where’er you hold a ball.
(H. Hemsley)
43
5. Homonymy and its sources.
- Конечно, самый лучший язык – английский. Во-первых, потому
что в нем около ста тысяч слов. В подметки ему не годится
французский со своими сорока семью и немецкий со своими
шестьюдесятью
с
чем-то
тысячами.
А
огромное
количество
односложных слов в английском – разве это не облегчение? А омонимы
английские – вот где клад! Ну, что русские омонимы? Стыд и смехота
одна! Мука да мука или мiр да мир … Раз два и обчелся. А вы
разверните-ка Оксфордский словарь и посмотрите, сколько страниц
занимают
в
нем
определения
одного
только
крошечного
трехбуквенного слова set. 67 страниц, молодой человек, – считанных! И
это еще не все преимущества английского языка. Английский язык –
язык без придури. В нем нет, как в несчастном русском языке,
например, букв, которые никогда не бывают начальными. Наше,
например, – будь оно трижды проклято, - Ы! Английский – язык
честный, без привередничества. В нем все буквы, как буквы:
равноправие-с. Дай Господи, чтобы он сделался международным.
Вздохнуть можно было бы. А то корпишь над нашим идиотским
русским языком – кто его только выдумал? Слова – как будто пьяный
дрова рубил: одно полено в три аршина, а другое в три вершка.
Попробуй-ка их аккуратно в штабель сложить…
- Простите меня, я что-то в толк не возьму. С какой, собственно,
точки зрения вы рассуждаете о языках и оцениваете их?
- Разумеется, с практической, молодой человек. С точки зрения
человека,
который
зарабатывает
себе
на
хлеб
составлением
крестословиц. Да, судьба сыграла со мной скверную шутку, уродив
меня русским, а не англичанином. Вы подумайте, родись я в
Бирмингеме: 100 тысяч слов – раз, односложных слов – хоть купайся,
44
омонимов – хоть обожрись!
(from Азов В. Муки русского слова,
Посльднiя Новости (Париж), 14 июля 1929 г.)
Test
1. The word “homonymy” means:
a) a word has two or more meaning
b) the sameness of form combined with the difference in meaning
c) a change of meaning based on the association of similarity
d) the process of semantic development
2. Most antonyms in English are:
a) verbs
b) nouns
c) pronounces
d) adjectives
3. Euphemism is a word which is:
a) more offensive
b) of native origin
c) less offensive or unpleasant
d) international
4. Root antonyms are antonyms having:
a) different roots
b) similar roots
c) different affixes
d) identical affixes
5. A synonym is a word:
a) similar in sound but of different meaning
b) similar in grammatical form
c) different in sound but of identical meaning
d) different in context
6. Synonymic dominant is the central term:
45
a) of a thematic group
b) of a word-group
c) of a language
d) of the word-formation
LECTURE 5
GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS OF ENGLISH VOCABULARY
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1. The volume of the vocabulary.
2. Archaisms.
3. Neologisms.
4. Professional terminology.
5. Standard English. Slang.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1. The volume of the vocabulary
In contrast to grammar, the vocabulary of a language is not systematic but
chaotic.
Nowadays in English there are 450,000 words. Passive vocabulary is 30,000 to
understand and active vocabulary is 5,000 words to speak.
The English vocabulary can be subdivided into two large stylistic layers: literary
words and expressions and conversational words and expressions. Each of these
large layers is, in its turn, further subdivided into lexical groups. The words in
our practical vocabulary are neutral and frequent. The basic word stock includes
root words, derivatives and compounds. It includes different parts of speech,
native and borrowed words.
The basic word-stock is a good building material for phrases: to go mad, to go
on strike, to go one’s way, to go out of fashion; to make a date, to make friends,
to make a long story short, to make a scene. The words from the basic stock are
usually pollysemantic.
46
Literary words can be divided into general literary words and special literary
words.
2. Archaisms
Archaisms are words that were common but have been replaced from the
language by their modern synonyms and are no longer used in neutral or
colloquial speech, but they mostly belong to the poetic style, e.g. betwixt, prep.
(between), damsel, n (noble girl), fluey, adj. (dusty), hark, v (listen), morn, n
(morning). Archaisms remain in the language: they are used in poetry and in
official documents, e.g. steed (horse), slay (kill), behold (see), perchance
(perhaps), woe (sorrow). Sometimes a lexical archaism gets a new meaning,
and the old meaning becomes a semantic archaism, e.g. fair in the meaning of
“beautiful” is a semantic archaism, but in the meaning of “blond” it belongs to
the neutral style.
3. Neologisms
A neologism (Greek neo – “new” and logos “word”) is a word, term, or phrase
which has been recently created – often to apply to new concepts, or to reshape
older terms in newer language form. Neologisms are especially useful in
identifying inventions, new phenomena. A neologism denotes a new object or
phenomenon, e.g. e-book, n – a book in an electronic format; ecotourism, n –
tourism to places having unspoiled natural resources; home shopping, n – the
purchase of goods from home, especially goods offered on cable television.
Neologisms come about by different means: some are imported from other
languages, some phrases are translated from another language, many are made
by combining familiar words or roots to make new combinations (e.g. Greek
word “tele”, meaning “at a distance”, and the Latin word “visio” – “sight”, gave
the word television.), some words began life as abbreviations (laser is an
abbreviation of “light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation). New
47
words can be added to the language due to new technologies or any idea must be
expressed.
At the present moment English is developing very swiftly and there is so called
“neology blowup”. Averagely 800 neologisms appear every year in Modern
English. Lexical units are primarily used by university teachers, newspaper
reporters, scientists, by those who are connected with mass media.
The intensive development of science, industry, terminology, means of
communication leads to the invention of new words and phrases. There is the
group of neologisms connected with computerization, and we can mention
words used to denote:
1) different types of computers: PC, super-computer, multi-user, neurocomputer
(analogue of a human brain);
2) parts of computers: hardware, software, monitor, screen, data, vaporware
(experimental samples of computers for exhibition, not for production);
3) computer languages: BASIC, ALGOL, FORTRAN etc;
4) notions connected with work on computer: computerization, computerize, to
troubleshoot, to blitz out (to ruin data in computer’s memory).
There are also different types of activities performed with the help of computers,
many of them are formed with the help of morpheme “tele”: telework, to
telecommute (to work at home having a computer which is connected with the
enterprise for which one works), telebanking, telemarketing, teleshopping (when
you can perform different operations with the help of your computer without
leaving your home, all operations are registered by the computer at your bank).
In the sphere of linguistics we have such neologisms as: machine translation,
interlingual (an artificial language for machine translation into several
languages) and some others.
In the sphere of medicine computers are also used and we have the following
neologism: telemonitory unit (a telemonitory system for treating patience at a
distance).
48
With the development of social activities neologisms appeared as well, e.g.
youthquake (волнения среди молодёжи), pussy-footer (политик, идущий на
компромиссы), Euromarket, Eurodollar, Europarliament, Europol etc.
In the modern English society there is a tendency to social stratification, and
there are neologisms in this sphere as well, e.g.: belonger (представитель
среднего класса, приверженец консервативных взглядов), survivers (people
belonging to the lowest layer of the society), sustainers (a little bit more
prosperous), emulaters (people who try to prosper in life and imitate those, they
want to belong to), achievers (people who have prospered but are not belongers).
All these layers of society are called VAL (Value and Lifestyle). The rich belong
to jet set that is those who can afford to travel by jet planes all over the world
enjoying their life. Sometimes they are called jet plane travellers.
To this group we can also refer abbreviations: yuppie (young urban professional
people), PLU (during Margaret Thatcher’s rule this abbreviation appeared which
means “People like us” by which snobbistic circles of society call themselves.).
Nowadays PLU has been substituted by “one of us”.
There are a lot of immigrants now in the UK, in connection with which
neologisms partial (имеющие право жить в стране) and non-partial (не
имеющие право жить в стране) were formed.
The word-group “welfare mother” was formed to denote a non-working single
mother living on benefit.
The higher society has neologism in their speech, such as: dial-a-meal, dial-ataxi.
In the language of teenagers there are such words as: Drugs! (OK), sweat (бег
на длинные дистанции), task (home composition), brunch (breakfast + lunch)
поздний завтрак, etc. With the development of the professional jargons a lot of
words ending in “speak” appeared in English, e.g. artspeak, sportspeak,
medspeak, education-speak, video-speak, cable-speak etc.
There are different semantic groups of neologisms belonging to everyday life:
49
1) food e.g. starter (instead of “hors d’oevres”), microbiotic (raw vegetables,
crude rice), longlife milk, clingfilm, microwave stove, consumer electronics,
fridge-freezer, hamburgers (beef-, cheese-, fish-, veg-);
2) clothing e.g. catsuit (one piece clingning suit), string (miniscule bikini),
hipsters (trousers or skirt with the belt on hips), completenik (a long sweater for
trousers), swetnik (a long jacket), pants-skirt bloomers (lady’s sports trousers);
3) footwear e.g. winkle-pickers (shoes with long pointed toes), thongs (open
sandals), backsters (beech sandals with thick soles);
4) bags e.g. bumbag (a small bag worn on waist), sling bag (a bag with a long
belt), maitre (a small bag for cosmetics).
There are also such words as: dangledolly (a dolly-talisman dangling in the car
before the wind screen), boot-sale (selling from the boot of the car), touch-tone
(a telephone with press button).
There are also abbreviations of different types such as resto (vintage car), teen
(teenager), dinky DINKS (dual income no kids yet), AIDS (Aquired Immune
Deficiency Syndrome), HIV (human immunodeficiency virus).
Strong neologisms also include phonetic borrowings, such as perestroika
(Russian), solidarnost (Polish), dolce vita (Italian) etc.
Linguists distinguish three groups of neologisms: a) unstable, i.e. extremely
new, being proposed, or being used only by a very small subculture; b) diffused
– having reached a significant audience, but not yet having gained acceptance; c)
stable – having gained recognizable and probably lasting acceptance.
4. Professional terminology
A term is a word or a phrase with a fixed meaning, denoting a thing or a process
in some branch of science, production or in some other field of human activity.
It should be monosemantic, have only a denotational meaning, possess no
synonyms, e.g. appendix (med.) – a small, narrow tube attached to the large
intestine. In medical sphere it is monosemantic.
50
Terms are widely used in newspapers, in official style, and in fiction. Besides
remaining in a certain terminological group a term may be substituted by
another term.
International words are words which borrowed by several languages, e.g.
philosophy, mathematics, theatre, drama.
Among international words are terms of art (music, tragedy, comedy), political
terms (diplomacy, policy, revolution, progress, democracy), names of sciences
(economics, phonetics, politics), technological terms (telephone, Internet), sports
(football, volley-ball, baseball, hockey, tennis), name of fruits and foodstuff
(coffee, banana, chocolate, coca-cola, mango, grapefruit).
5. Standard English. Slang
Languages are composed of different varieties and dialects. We can distinguish
several different kinds of English. In general, there are two broad categories of
English: standard and nonstandard.
Standard English has standard use that receives the highest respect within
society. This respect is based on grammatical usage and on pronunciation (in
British English, for example, the most respected pronunciation is known as
Received Pronunciation – RP).
It is the language of most educational, legal, governmental, and professional
documents. It is a model which others may follow. Standard English is
associated with education. Standard forms are those acceptable by most people
as being the educated form, the form used in the media and taught in schools. It
can be distinguished two kinds of Standard English: formal English and
informal English. Formal English is the language, more often written than
spoken, used by highly educated people in formal situations. Grammar and
usage are generally conservative. It is the language of all serious writing.
Informal English is the language (written or spoken) most English-speaking
51
people use most of the time. It is the language of magazines, newspapers, most
books, and of business letters and talks intended for general audiences.
Slang is a variety of vocabulary layers that consists either of newly created
words and phrases or words employed in special meaning (school slang, sport
slang, newspaper slang, etc.). Slang refers to nonstandard lexical items, and it
changes rapidly. Most slang words will either disappear from use within a
generation or become standardized and no longer slang.
Slang is considered to be a low form of the language and is generally associated
with younger speakers. For instance, stud – жеребец, самец (о мужчине),
половой гигант; goon – болван, тупица; sucky – The food is sucky (как
можно есть такую гадость).
Some of slang words and phrases have become common in Modern English:
mate, chap, it’s up to you, chatter-box, etc.
SEMINAR 5
KEY TERMS
active vocabulary
term
formal
informal
neologism
arhaism
slang
Standard English
stock
layer
lexical group
conversational words
TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION AND EXERCISES
1. General characteristics of the English vocabulary.
2. Standard English. In what situations is Standard English most likely to be
used? Nonstandard English.
52
3. Formal style. The properties of formal English and the field of its
application.
4. Terminology.
A
term.
Provide
examples
of your professional
terminology.
5. The properties of informal English.
6. Neologisms: ways of forming, groups of neologisms. Archaisms.
7. The use of slang.
1. Speak about the difference between formal and informal style in your
mother tongue. Give examples.
2. What do the following exclamations mean?
Ouch!
Wow!
Gosh!
Touch wood.
Phooey!
Whoops!
Well?
Cheers.
Hi!
3. Prepare the presentations of examples illustrating the dynamic character
of the English vocabulary.
4. Give modern English equivalents of the words. Translate them into
Russian: bade, spouce, dire, aught, quoth, kine, swain, courser, ire,
charger, thy, thine, troth, hath, whit
5. Translate compound-neologisms. Use them in sentences of your own:
character assassination, double standard, paper-back book, brain tank,
communication gap, job-hopper, shockwave, shuttle democracy, marginal
man, fall-out, sweet heart contract, nine-to-fiver, doublespeak, spaghettiwestern, runaways
Test
1. Nowadays in English there are:
a) 470 000 words
b) 500 000 words
c) 350 000 words
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d) 450 000 words
2. Archaisms are words which:
a) replaced some new words
b) are no longer used in everyday speech
c) are used to express unimportance
d) are used instead of new meanings
3. Neologism is:
a) an old lexical unit for denoting a new object or phenomenon
b) a lexical unit existing in the language and changing its meaning
c) a new lexical unit that develops in the language
d) a new lexical unit for denoting a new object or phenomenon
4. The words from the basic stock are usually:
a) monosemantic
b) pollysemantic
c) nonstandard
d) formal
5. Formal English is the language, more often
a) abbreviations
b) written
c) spoken
d) neologism
6. Slang refers to
a) formal English
b) standard English
c) literary words
d) nonstandard lexical units
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PART THREE
LECTURE 6
WORD-GROUPS AND PHRASEOLOGICAL UNITS
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1. Types of word combinations. Classifications of word-groups.
2. Free word groups.
3. Phraseology as a subsystem of language.
4. A phraseological unit.
5. Distinction between free word-groups and phraseological units.
6. Classification of phraseological units.
7. Sources of phraseological units.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1. Types of word combinations. Classifications of word-groups
The vocabulary of any language consists not only of words but also of
different word groups and expressions. Words put together to form lexical
units make phrases or word-groups. A word-combination (word-group) is a
combination of two or more words organizes according to the norms of the
language. There are three types of word-groups: 1) free; 2) semi-free
(устойчивые); 3) phraseological units.
They are different structurally and semantically.
2. Free word groups
Free word combinations are structurally and semantically unstable, e.g. a
good man; a good and reliable man; a better man, a good woman. They are
characterized by the following features:
1. They are made up by the speaker; they are productive.
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2. Each word in a free word combination realizes its own meaning. For
example, in the word-combination a red rose, to write a letter,
extremely dangerous, each word has its own meaning, and the
meaning of the whole phrase is the sum of the meanings of its
components.
3. Substitution is possible in them.
to walk fast
to walk
slowly
to move
forward
to run
backward
to go
in the park
to drive
in the forest
to fly
fast
Semi-free or Fixed combinations of words are structurally and
semantically stable and the meaning is understood from the meanings of the
components. That means there is no transference of meaning of these
combinations, e.g. a man of business; a man of letters (писатель). They
stand midway between free word-combinations and phrasiological units.
They are characterized in the following way:
1. They are fixed because they are not made up in speech but are used as
ready-made units.
2. The meaning of the whole can be inferred from the meanings of its
components.
3. They are transitional, semi-productive.
Examples: soft landing, to commit suicide, good luck, black coffee, Merry
Christmas, Good afternoon.
3. Phraseology as a subsystem of language
Phraseology is a branch of lexicology which studies different types of fixed
expressions, which like words name various objects and phenomena. They
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are not created by the speaker but exist in the language as ready-made units.
These word-groups are characterized by stability of structure and transferred
(перенос) meaning (take the bull by the horn –действовать решительно,
напрямик = брать быка за рога); (to burn one’s boats – совершать
решительный поступок, бесповоротно разрывая с прошлым = сжечь
корабли); (to eat a bushel of salt with – очень долгое время общаясь,
хорошо узнать кого-либо = съесть пуд соли).
4. A phraseological unit
Phrasiological units are structurally and semantically stable and they have
transferred meaning, e.g. a man of the wheel (руководитель). The term
“phrasiological unit” to denote certain groups of set expressions was
introduced by academician V.V. Vinogradov. English and American
linguists often use the term “idiom”.
Phraseological units possess the following characteristics:
1. They cannot be freely made up in speech but they are reproduced as
ready-made units; they are non-productive, e.g. to skate of thin ice
(рисковать), a big bug (важная шишка), to cut off with a shilling
(лишить наследства), to see the light (to understand), first night –
(премьера).
2. The meaning of the whole phrase cannot be deduced from the meanings
of the components. For example, the meaning of the phraseological units
to cook somebody’s goose (to ensure that somebody fails, e.g. When the
police found his fingerprints he knew his goose was cooked.), to have
green fingers (to make plants grow well, e.g. Plants don’t grow for me,
but my wife has green fingers.) cannot be worked out from the meanings
of the constituent words.
3. Variability is impossible in them. For instance, in the idiom to rain cats
and dogs we cannot replace the words cats and dogs by the words mice
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and rats, or by milk and water; and instead of the verb rain we cannot use
to pour. The meaning of the Russian idiom “собаку съесть” (быть
хорошо осведомленным; достигнуть мастерства в каком-то деле)
doesn’t deal with either word “собака” or the word “съесть”. Besides we
cannot replace the words, e.g. “щенка съесть”, “съесть пуделя”. If we
replace the constituent words of the phraseological unit we loose its
meaning and it carries to the nonsense.
5. Distinction between free word-groups and phraseological units
Traditionally phraseological units are defined as word-groups that cannot be
freely made up in speech, but are reproduced as ready-made units. It is a group
of words whose meaning cannot be deduced by examining the meanings of the
constituent lexemes. The essential features of phraseological units are: a) lack of
motivation and b) stability of the lexical components. The English language
contains lots of such expressions, e.g. to dine with Duke Humphrey – остаться
без обеда; nuts and bolts – the essential or practical details (He explained to us
the nuts and bolts of his theory – Он объяснил нам суть своей теории); one’s
cup of tea – one’s chosen or preferred thing, person, task, company, etc. (It is
just not my cup of tea – Это просто не в моем вкусе. He’s not my cup of tea –
Он мне не нравится).
Free word groups are formed in the process of speech according to the standards
of the language, while phraseological units exist in the language side by side
with separate words. Phraseological units are reproduced in speech whereas free
word groups are constructed in the process of communication by joining
together words into a phrase. The difference is in the interrelation of lexical
components, for example: blue ribbon (or red, green, etc.) – free word group,
but blue ribbon – отличие, высшая награда (an honour given to the winner of
the first prize in a competition) – a phraseological unit – no substitution is
possible in a phraseological unit; to see eye to eye – быть полностью
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согласным (а не “видеться с глазу на глаз”); under one’s hand – за
собственной подписью (а не “под рукой”); strew in one’s own juice –
страдать по своей собственной глупости (а не “вариться в собственном
соку”).
In free word groups each of its constituents has its denotational meaning. In the
case of phraseological units the denotational meaning belongs to the word group
as a single inseparable unit, e.g. compare a free word-group a white elephant
and a phraseological unit white elephant – обуза, подарок, от которого не
знаешь как избавиться.
6. Classification of phraseological units
There are several classifications of phraseological units. Semantic
classification of phraseological units was suggested by academician V.V.
Vinogradov.
There are three groups in this classification:
a) phraseological combinations (сочетания) are very close to free word
groups as they have one of the words used in its direct meaning, e.g. to break
a promise – нарушить обещание (“to break” is used in the transferred
meaning, and “promise” is used in the direct meaning); to break news –
смягчать дурные вести (“to break” is used in the transferred meaning, and
the word “news” is used in the direct meaning).
These word combinations are motivated; the components are limited in the
ability to combine with each other. We can say in English: to break a
promise (нарушить обещание) but we cannot say: to destroy a promise
(разрушить обещание);
b) phraseological unities are expressions the meaning of which can be
deduced from the meanings of their components; the meaning of the whole is
based on the transferred meanings of the components, e.g. to skate of thin ice
– рисковать; to sit on the fence – выжидать; to show one’s teeth – to be
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unfriendly; to stand to one’s guns – to refuse to change one’s opinion; wash
one’s dirty linen in public – to discuss or make public one’s quarrels.
In such phrasiological unity the meaning of the whole is not the sum of the
direct meanings of the components, but it is the meaning, that understood
from the transformed (change) meaning of the components;
c) phraseological fusions (сращения) are units whose meaning cannot be
deduced from the meanings of their component parts, the meaning of
phraseological fusions is unmotivated at the present stage of language
development, e.g. heavy father — serious or solemn part in a theatrical play; red
tape – bureaucratic methods (волокита); a mare’s nest – иллюзия,
заблуждение; My aunt! – вот те на!, вот так штука!, подумать только!, ну и
ну! (восклицание, выражающее удивление, досаду, восклицание); a fish
story – выдумка; Oh, my eye! – Oh, my God!; Good-bye – God be with you.
There was a time when phraseological fusions were motivated, e.g. to cut off
with a shilling – лишить наследства.
Such phraseological units have transferred meaning. The meaning of the
components is completely absorbed by the meaning of the whole.
7. Sources of phraseological units
Linguists collect set expressions and arrange them into groups according to their
origin, e.g. idioms from sea life, from sports, from agriculture, from military life
and so on.
There are several sources of phraseological units. One of them is the
development of cultural and economical spheres of life.
Phraseological units may come from:
1) engineering and technology, e.g. to let off steam – дать волю чувствам;
2) agriculture, e.g. to put the plough before the oxen – начать не с того
конца;
3) sea-travelling business, e.g. to be in low waters – быть на мели;
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4) trade and commerce, e.g. into bargain – в придачу;
5) national customs and traditions, e.g. by hook or (by) crook – (by any
means) любыми средствами;
6) everyday life, e.g. to be born with a silver spoon in one’s mouth – родиться в
рубашке, to sail under false colour – прятать истинное лицо;
7) world literature, e.g. to fight against Windmills – сражаться с ветряными
мельницами, an ugly duckling – гадкий утенок;
8) history, e.g. to cross the Rubicon – перейти Рубикон, принять
бесповоротное решение;
9) the Bible, e.g. the apple of discord – яблоко раздора, black sheep, lost sheep
– заблудшая овца,
to cast pearls before swine – метать
бисер перед
свиньями, can the leopard change its spots? – горбатого могила исправит.
Such phrasiological units can be easily translated from one language to
another, e.g. a wolf in sheep closing - волк в овечьей шкуре. Such units are
call international phrasiological units. As for national ones they are not
easily translated into another language. They are translated as a rule by a free
word combination, e.g. the Russian phraseological unit филькина грамота
can be translated into English as “a useless sheet of paper”; глухая тетеря
(Russian) – “a deaf person” (English).
SEMINAR 6
KEY TERMS
free word group
phraseological unit
components
constituent words
substitution
stability
Phraseology
ready-made unit
transferred meaning
idiom
phraseological fusion
phraseological combination
national phrasiological unit
international phrasiological unit
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TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION AND EXERCISES
1. What is
a word
combination? Types
of word combinations.
Classifications of word-groups.
2. A free word combination. What are the restrictions imposed on it?
3. Phraseology as a subsystem of language. Phraseological units as part of
the vocabulary of a language.
4. What is a phraseological unit?
5. Difference between a free word combination and a phraseological word
combination.
6. The main types of phraseological units in Modern English.
1. Explain the meaning of the following word combinations: (1) as free word
combinations and (2) as phraseological units:
skate on thin ice, best man, black ball, first night, run out, touch bottom,
give a ring, break the ice, burn one’s fingers, on the rocks, to have green
fingers, to start the ball rolling, get to the point, a piece of cake, black sheep.
2. From the lexemes in brackets choose the correct one to go with each of
the synonyms given below:
a) acute, keen, sharp (knife, mind, sight);
b) abysmal, deep, profound (ignorance, river, sleep);
c) unconditional, unqualified (success, surrender);
d) diminutive, miniature, petite, petty, small, tiny (camera, house,
speck, spite, suffix, woman);
e) brisk, nimble, quick, swift (mind, revenge, train, walk).
3. One word in each group does not make a strong word partnership with the
underlined word. Which word is odd one out?
1) Bright
idea green smell child day room
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2) Clear
attitude need instruction alternative day conscience road
3) Light
traffic work day entertainment suitcase rain green lunch
4) New
experience job food potatoes baby situation year
5) High
season price opinion spirits house time priority
6) Main
point reason effect entrance speed road meal course
7) Strong
possibility doubt smell influence views coffee language
8) Serious
advantage situation relationship illness crime matter
4. Using a dictionary, find idioms that include the “food” words listed below.
Use them in sentences of your own.
1. ham
2. tea 3. icing 4. onion 5. cream 6. nut
5. Complete the similes:
For example, as cool as a cucumber
as good as …
as red as …
as mad as …
as American as …
as happy as …
as easy as …
as simple as …
as merry as …
as poor as …
as ugly as …
6. Complete the proverb from the right column.
1. There is not place
2. When at Rome, do
3. East or west
4. Practice makes
5. Dry bread at home is better
6. Rome was not
7. An Englishman’s home
a) built in a day
b) than roast meat abroad
c) like home
d) is his castle
e) home is best
f) as the Romans do
g) perfect
7. Read the dialogues with phraseological units and make up your own.
So, how’s business?
Great! We’ve been in the black for several months now.
Wow, congratulations!
Thanks.
Nice suit, it must have cost an arm and a leg.
No, I got it on sale.
Wow. Are there any left?
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Not in your size, I’m sure.
Boy, I am hungry!
So am I, but I only have an hour before my next class.
Well, let’s grab a bite to eat at that Chinese take out.
Test
1. Phraseological fusion has:
a) deduced meanings of its components
b) its denotational meaning
c) transferred meaning
d) one of the words used in its direct meaning
2. Phraseological units are constructed in:
a) speech
b) the process of communication
c) dictionaries
d) the process of writing
3. A phraseological unit “heavy father” means:
a) a fat father
b) a serious or solemn part in a theatrical play
c) a strict father
d) a stepfather
4. Phrasiological units are structurally and semantically:
a) formal
b) unstable
c) semi-free
d) stable
5. A phraseological unit “to see eye to eye” means:
a) видеться с глазу на глаз
b) смотреть пристально
c) быть полностью согласным
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d) следить за кем-либо
6. A phraseological unit “to stand to one’s guns” means:
a) to hold a gun on somebody
b) to refuse to change one’s opinion
c) to hunt with a gun
d) to shoot someone with a gun
LECTURE 7
WORD STRUCTURE AND WORD-FORMATION
----------------------------------------------------------------------1. Morphological structure of the English word.
2. Word-formation.
3. Affixation. Prefixation.
4. Suffixation. Classifications of suffixes
5. Conversion.
6. Other types of word-formation.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
1. Morphological structure of the English word
The word is the fundamental unit of language, it has form and content.
Linguists define the word as the smallest free form found in language. Words
have an internal structure consisting of smaller units. The most important
component of word structure is the morpheme (Greek morphe “form” +
-eme
“the smallest distinctive unit”) – the smallest unit of language that
carries information about meaning or function. For instance, the word
builder consists of two morphemes (build – with the meaning of “construct”)
and -er (indicates that the entire word functions as a noun with the meaning
“one who builds”); the word houses is made up of two morphemes (the
morpheme house – with the meaning of “dwelling” and the morpheme –s –
with the meaning “more than one”). Some words consist of a single
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morpheme (e.g. the word train cannot be divided into smaller parts. Such
words are called simple words and words which contain two or more
morphemes are complex words. For example, one: and, boy, hunt, act; two:
boy-s, hunt-er, act-ive; three: hunt-er-s, act-iv-ate; more than three: re-activ-ate.
A morpheme is a meaning and a stretch of sound joined together.
Morphemes are always used as parts of words.
Thus, morpheme is a minimum sign of a given meaning with a given form
(sound and graphic).
A morpheme that can be a word by itself is called a free morpheme whereas
a morpheme that must be attached to another element is a bound
morpheme, e.g. the morpheme boy is free, since it can be used as a word on
its own; plural –s is bound. A free morpheme coincides with the stem and a
bound morpheme occurs only as a constituent part of a word. Affixes are
bound morphemes, for they always make part of a word.
The morphological structure of words can consist of several components
(morphemes). Words can be divided into two or more parts: a core is called a
root (the morpheme that expresses the lexical meaning of the word, e.g.
teach – teacher – teaching). The parts added to the root are called affixes
(morphemes that modify the meaning of the root). An affix added before the
root is called a prefix (reread, ex-minister); an affix added after the root is
called a suffix (actor, washable, kingdom). Roots belong to a lexical
category, such as noun, verb, adjective, or prepositions.
One should distinguish between suffixes and inflexions in English. Suffixes
can form a new part of speech, e.g. beauty – beautiful. Inflexions are
morphemes used to change grammar forms of the word, e.g. work – works
worked – working.
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2. Word-formation
Word formation or word-building is a branch of science of the language
which studies the patterns on which language forms new lexical items
(expressions, words). It is a process of forming words by combining a root
and affixal morphemes.
There are the following ways of word-formation in English: affixation,
conversion, compounding, clipping, back-formation, blending, sound
imitation, sound-interchange, stress-interchange.
Depending on the morphemes used in the word there are four structural types
of words in English:
1) simple (root) words consist of one root morpheme (warm, law, tables,
tenth);
2) derived words consist of one root morpheme, one or several affixes and
an inflexion (lawful, unmanageable);
3) compound words consist of two or more root morphemes and an
inflexion (boyfriend, outlaw);
4) compound-derived words consist of two or more root morphemes, one or
more affixes and an inflexion (left-handed, warm-hearted, blue-eyed).
3. Affixation. Prefixation
Affixation (аффиксация) is the formation of words by adding affixes to the root
(stem). It is a basic means of forming words in English. Affixation has been one
of the most productive ways of word-building in all periods of the history of
English. It consists in adding an affix to the root of a definite part of speech.
Affixation is divided into suffixation and prefixation. In Modern English,
suffixation is characteristic of noun and adjective formation, while prefixation is
typical of verb formation. As a rule, prefixes change the meaning of roots to
which they are added, while the part of speech of a new word remains the same,
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e.g. lucky / un-lucky (both words are adjectives). Suffixes not only modify the
lexical meaning of the root it is added to, but form one part of speech fro m
another, e.g. educate is a verb – education is a noun; care (n) / careless (adj);
luck (n) / lucky (adj).
Affixes are divided according to the following principle: a) etymological: native
and borrowed (e.g. beautiful – root “beauty” is native suffix “ful” is borrowed);
b) lexical-grammatical (e.g. noun-forming, verb-forming, etc. sun, n – sunny,
adj.) c) semantical.
Prefixation is the formation of words with the help of prefixes, e.g. coexist,
impossible, asleep, rewrite.
Prefixes are divided according to:
a) their origin (Native, e.g. un- / unhappy; Romanic, e.g. in- / inactive; Greek,
e.g. poly- / polyglot), etc.;
b) meaning (e.g. negative prefixes: in- / incapable, un- / unable, non- /
nonsense, a- / atheism, dis- / dislike; prefixes of time and order: ex- / exminister, neo- / neo-classical, after- / afternoon, fore- / forecast, post- / postwar,
proto- / protobiology; prefix of repetition: re- / redo; reversal prefixes: de- /
demerit, un- / untie, dis- / disagree; locative prefixes: extra- /extraordinary, pan/ panopticon , sub- / submarine, trans- / transcontinental; size and degree:
hyper- / hypercritical, mega- / megastar, mini- / miniskirt, super- /
supernatural, sur- / surtax, ultra- / ultramodern, vice- / vice-president), etc,;
c) productivity, i.e. the ability to make new words, e.g. un- / unwilling, undo is
highly productive.
4. Suffixation. Classifications of suffixes
Suffixation is the formation of words with the help of suffixes, e.g.
employer, employee, childish, northwards.
Suffixes are classified according to:
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a) their origin (Romanic, e.g. - age / marriage, - ment / government, - tion /
organization; Native, e.g. - er / writer, - dom / freedom, - ship / friendship;
Greek, e.g. - ism / socialism, - ize / nationalize), etc.;
b) meaning (e.g. - er / worker denotes the agent of the action; - ess / poetess
denotes feminine gender; - ence/ance / existence, guidance has abstract
meaning; -ie / birdie and - let / booklet express diminutiveness; - age /
average, - dom / kingdom – collectivity; - an / republican, - ese / Japanese, ian / librarian – appurtenance), etc.;
c) part of speech they form (e.g. noun suffixes - er / cutter, - ness /
darkness, -ment / payment; adjective suffixes - ish / foolish, - ful / hopeful, less / hopeless, - y / angry; verb suffixes - en / brighten, - fy / intensify), etc.;
d) productivity, i.e. the relative freedom with which they can combine with
bases of the appropriate category (e.g. productive suffixes - er / manager, ly / badly, - ness / witness, - ie / laddie, - let / cloudlet; non-productive – dom
/ computerdom, - th / strength; semi-productive - eer / engineer, - ward /
downward).
5. Conversion
Conversion (конверсия) is the formation of words without using wordbuilding affixes. Conversion is the process of shifting a word from one part
of speech to another (e.g. salt, n → salt, v; jump, v → jump, n). A certain
root is used for the formation of a categorically different word without an
element being added, e.g. bag – to bag, back – to back, bottle – to bottle.
Conversion is a productive way of forming words in English.
The productive models of conversion in English are the following:
1) formation of verbs from nouns (Noun → Verb), e.g. cash, n – cash, v;
work, n – work, v; butter – to butter; ship – to ship, a dog – to dog
(следовать по пятам), a monkey – to monkey (передразнивать). The noun
is the name of an animal and the verb denotes behaviour typical of this
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animal. Nose – to nose, hammer – to hammer, i.e. the noun is the name of a
tool and the verb is the name of an action, which is performed by this tool.
2) formation of nouns from verbs (Verb → Noun), e.g. fall, v – fall, n; must,
v – must, n; to survey – a survey; to call – a call;
3) formation of nouns from adjectives (Adjective → Noun), e.g. criminal,
adj – criminal, n; intellectual, adj – intellectual, n; poor – the poor; final – a
final);
4) formation of verbs from adjectives (Adjective → Verb), e.g. slow, adj –
slow, v; brown, adj – brown, v; dirty – to dirty.
6. Other types of word-formation
Word-composition (словосложение) is the formation of words by joining
two (or more) roots, e.g. night-club, man-of-war, passer-by. The
combination of two or more existing words to create a new word is one of
the most common word-building processes in English. A compound word
(or compound) is a unit consists of more than one lexical root, e.g. bluebird
(adjective + noun); in-laws (preposition + noun); jumpsuit (verb + noun).
Compound words may be classified according to the parts of speech:
a) nouns: waterfall, looking-glass;
b) verbs: to honeymoon, to outgrow;
c) adjectives: peace-loving, hard-working;
d) adverbs: downstairs, lip-deep;
e) prepositions: within, into;
f) numerals: thirty-seven, fifty-nine.
Compounding (словослияние) is the making of a new word by joining two
or more roots together. These words are classified into the following groups:
1) neutral compounds, where the words are joined together, without any
connecting element, e.g. headache, heartbreak, bedroom;
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2) morphological compounds, in which the words are joined by a vowel or a
consonant, e.g. speedometer, craftsman, statesman, bridesmaid;
3) synthetic compounds, in which words are joined by a prepositions or
conjunction as a linking element, e.g. down-and-out (в ужасном положении,
опустошенный), mother-in-law, good-for-nothing (лентяй, бездельник);
4) derivational compounds, in which the words have affixes in their roots, e.g.
film-goer, blue-eyed;
5) contracted compounds, in which one of the words is shortened, e.g. TV-set,
H-bag (handbag).
Affixation, conversion, and compounding are the three main types of wordformation in English. There are a number of other ways of forming words, such
as:
a) clipping (сокращение) is the process of cutting off one or several syllables of
a word, e.g. maths (mathematics), lab (laboratory), gym (gymnastics), ZOO
(zoological
garden),
exam
(examination),
BBC
(British
Broadcasting
Corporation), i.e. (Latin “id est” – English “that is”), e.g. (Latin “exempli gratia”
– English “for example), etc. (Latin “et cetera” – English “and so on”).
Three types of clipping can be distinguished:
the first part is left, e.g. ad (advertisement), prof (professor);
the second part is left, e.g. phone (telephone), plane (airplane),
burger (hamburger);
a middle part is left, e.g. fridge (refrigerator), flu (influenza).
b) back-formation (реверсия) is a process that creates a new word by removing
affix from another word in the language, e.g. to televise (from “television”), to
babysit (from “a babysitter”);
c) blending (стяжение) is the process of merging parts of words into one new
word, usually the first part of one and the final part of the other, e.g. brunch
(from “breakfast” and “lunch”); smog (from “smoke” and “fog”), motel (from
“motorist” and “hotel”), medicare (from “medical” and “care”);
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d) sound imitation (звуковое подражание) is the formation of words from
sounds associated with objects producing these sounds, buzz, meow, cuckoo,
cock-a-doodle-doo, splash, tick-tick;
e) sound-interchange (чередование звука) is a way of making words by
changing the phonetic shape of the root, e.g. food, n – feed, v; sing, v – song, n;
speak, v – speech, n; life, n – live, n. It was produced in old English and now it
is not produced at all;
f) stress-interchange (чередование ударения) is a way of making words by
changing the stress in one and the same morpheme in various cases of its
occurrence, e.g. ′present, n – to pre′sent, v; ′present, n – to pre′sent, v; ′record, n
– to re′cord, v; ′import, n – to im′port.
SEMINAR 7
KEY TERMS
morpheme
root
free morpheme
bound morpheme
affix
suffix
prefix
inflexions
derived word
compound word
productivity
conversion
composition
clipping
compounding
back-formation
TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION AND EXERCISES
1. What is a word-formation? How is word-formation classified?
2. How do you distinguish between a morpheme and a word?
3. Morphemes; types of morphemes. Structural types of words in English.
4. Affixation. Classifications of affixes.
5. What is conversion? Semantic groups of converted lexical units.
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6. Composition. Give examples of different types of composition.
7. Ways of forming compounds.
8. Classifications of compound words.
9. What is back-formation?
10. What is abbreviation, clipping, blending?
1. Give examples of free and bound morphemes (5-7 of each type).
2. Form words with a negative meaning, using prefixes in-, un-, dis-, de-.
Ability, able, accessible, action, admissible, expected, comprehensible, to tie,
eatable, to bind, to charge, to obey, to organize, to mobilize, to bolt, just,
justice.
3. State what part of speech the following words belong to. Read the pairs of
words and comment on the stress in them.
1. Economy – economic; industry – industrial; technology – technological;
solid – solidity.
2. Canada – Canadian; Europe – European; Japan – Japanese.
3. To generate – generation; to investigate – investigation; to form –
formation; to specialize – specialization; to analyse – analysis, analytic;
emphasize – emphasis, emphatic; to separate – separation.
4. Translate the following compound words into Russian. State the type of
compounds.
Undertaker, stay-at-home, red-hot, bird’s-eye, lady-bird, jelly-fish, madbrain,
busybody, brassface, fire-eater, handiwork, officer-in-charge, early-riser, Tshirt, golden-haired.
5. Analyse the structure of the compounds. Translate them into Russian.
1. Office-manager, office-managing, office-management.
2. Novel-translator, novel-translating, novel-translation.
3. Mail-deliverer, mail-delivering, mail-delivery.
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4. Mainland,
letterbox,
postman,
rain-proof,
grandchildren,
gentleman, snow-storm, foot-path, ice-breaker, world-wide, oilrich, first-hand, shorthand, highway, bookshelf.
6. Compare the verbs with the corresponding nouns. Translate them into
Russian.
ape – to ape
ass – to ass
dog – to dog
duck – to duck
fish – to fish
eye – to eye
finger – to finger
monkey – to monkey
rat – to rat
wolf – to wolf
back – to back
bone – to bone
head – to head
shoulder – to shoulder
top – to top
dress – to dress
pocket – to pocket
face – to face
collar – to collar
line – to line
star – to star
Test
1. Affixation is:
a) a way of word-building consisting in adding an affix to the root of a
definite part of speech
b) a way of word-building consisting in adding an affix to the root of a
noun
c) shortening of words
d) a type of morphological analysis
2. The main function of suffixes in Modern English is:
a) to change the lexical meaning of a word
b) to form the verb
c) to ask questions
d) to form one part of speech from another
3. Сonversion is a morphological way of forming words:
a) when one part of speech is formed from another part of speech
b) when a noun is formed from the verb
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c) when a noun is formed from the adjective
d) when a verb is formed from another part of speech
4. Clipping consists:
a) in adding a part of a word
b) in cutting off a part of a word
c) in cutting off a prefix
d) in adding a suffix
5. Determine the number of morphemes in the word “reactivate”:
a) one
b) two
c) three
d) four
6. Inflexions are morphemes used to change:
a) phonetic forms of the word
b) grammar forms of the word
c) semantic forms
d) stylistic forms
PART FOUR
Lecture 8
VARIANTS OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1. British English and American English as the main variants of the English
language.
2. Morphological peculiarities of American words.
3. Grammar peculiarities of American words.
4. Lexical peculiarities of the two variants.
5. The future of the English language.
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1. British English and American English as the main variants of
the English language
It is natural that the English language is not used with uniformity in the British
Isles and in Australia, in the USA and in New Zealand, in Canada and in India,
etc. The English language also has some peculiarities in Wales, Scotland, in
other parts of the British Isles and America. Variants of a language are regional
varieties of a standard literary language characterised by some minor
peculiarities in the sound system, vocabulary and grammar and by their own
literary norms.
We treat American English (AE) as the original variety of English. It’s not a
separate language because it shares similar features with British English (BE) in
the fields of phonetics, grammar and vocabulary. AE has a literary norm of its
own which differs from BE.
The American English is “an important part of American history, of social
history, and of the biography of us all” (Stuart Berg Flexner). The first great
American contribution to the English language, in the 1600s, came from the
need to name North American animals and plants. Some of the new names came
from English words like corn and catfish, others like raccoon and moose were
borrowed from the languages spoken by the Indians. In the nineteenth century
appeared know-how, and the first skyscrapers.
Until the 18th century, British and American English were similar with almost no
variation. Immigration to America by other English peoples had changed the
language by 1700.
The variation between American and British English is considerable: the
differences concern the vocabulary, spelling, pronunciation, and stress.
2. Morphological peculiarities of American words
Spelling. There are several differences between British and American spelling,
such as the “-re” endings became “-er” and the “-our” endings became “-or”.
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American English tends to prefer -ize and -ization whereas British English
prefers -ise and -isation. American English retains the noun/verb distinction in
advice / advise and device / devise. Also, British defence, offence, pretence;
American defense, offense, pretense. Britons usually write the noun form with “our” (e.g. labour, behaviour) while Americans write without “u” (labor,
behavior).
Pronunciation. There are several differences between Received Pronunciation
(RP) and General American (GA), such as the pronunciation of final /-r/. RP has
many words in [a:] which are pronounced with [æ] in GA, e.g. bath, class,
dance, example, pass, etc. In British English the sound [о] corresponds to the
American [Λ], e.g. hot.
Punctuation. In American English a period (.) is used after initials or
abbreviations. Americans tend to write “U.S.”, “U.N.”, “Mr.”, “Mrs.”, “Dr.”
etc., while most British will write “US ”, “UN ”, “Mr”, “Mrs”, “Dr”, etc.
When starting a formal letter, Americans usually write a colon after the greeting
(“Dear Sir:”) while Britons usually write a comma (“Dear Sir,”).
Numbers. When saying or writing out numbers, the British will put an “and”
before the last part, as in “one hundred and fifty-six” and “two thousand and
seven”, whereas Americans go with “one hundred, fifty-six” and “two thousand,
seven”.
Americans also have a tendency to read numbers like 1123 as “eleven twentythree”, which would be “one thousand, one hundred and twenty-three” in
Britain unless discussing the year 1123, when “eleven twenty-three” would be
the norm.
When referring to the number 0, Americans use the term “zero”, whereas
Britons would use “nought” or “oh” as well.
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3. Grammar peculiarities of American words
Grammatical peculiar features are not numerous: a) the substitution of the past
simple for present perfect. The present perfect tense is more common in British
English than in American, where the simple past tense is usually used instead.
For example, I have lost my key. Can you help me look for it? In American
English the following is possible: I lost my key. In British English the above
would be considered incorrect. However, both forms are accepted in standard
American English; b) there are two forms to express possession in English:
Have or Have got. (She has a new car. – She has got a new car.).
While both forms are correct and accepted in both British and American
English, “have got” is preferred form in British English while most Americans
employ the “have”. American English allows “do” as a substitute for “have”,
e.g. American: “Have you any food? Yes, I do.” British: “Have you got any
food? Yes, I have.”; c) the past participle of the verb get is gotten in American
English. For example, He’s gotten much better at playing tennis. British English
– He’s got much better at playing tennis.
Nouns of direction with -wards: British forwards, upwards, afterwards, etc.;
American forward, upward, afterward.
Collective nouns like team and company that describe multiple people are often
used with the plural form of a verb in British English (the team are concerned),
and with the singular form in American English (the team is concerned).
There are also a few differences in preposition use:
British English
American English
at the weekend
on the weekend
Monday to Friday
Monday through Friday
please write to me
please write me
do something again
do something over
fill in a form
fill out a form
stay at home
stay home
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apart from
aside from
different from
different than
4. Lexical peculiarities of the two variants
Probably the major differences between British and American English lie in the
choice of vocabulary. Some words mean different things in the two varieties,
e.g. “smart”: American English – clever, British English – well dressed;
“bathroom”: AE – a room containing a toilet, BE – a room containing a bath
or shower; “homely”: AE – ugly, BE – pleasant; “public school”: AE – feepaying school, BE – state school; “wash up”: AE – wash face and hands, BE –
wash dishes after a meal.
There are words in both variants describing the same meaning:
Meaning
the dot and the end
BE
AE
full stop
period
unit of paper currency
note
bill
mathematics
maths
math
the season after summer
autumn
day when offices are closed
bank holiday
legal holiday
the name of the final letter
zed
zee
hand bag
purse
of a sentence
fall
of the alphabet
large bag carried by females
place where the goods
shop
store
are bought
place where medicines
chemist
drug store
payment in a restaurant
bill
check
the business part of a city
town centre
downtown
code used when sorting mail
postcode
zip code
are bought
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fuel for vehicles
petrol
gasoline
ticket for one trip
single
one way
device for obtaining water
tap
faucet
portable battery-operated
torch
flashlight
contest between two teams
match
game
a group of people waiting
queue
line
light source
for their turn
In some cases a notion may have two synonyms used on both sides of the
Atlantic Ocean, but one of them is more frequent in Britain, the other — in the
USA. Thus, in the pairs post — mail, timetable — schedule, notice — bulletin
the first word is more frequent in Britain, the second — in America. So, the
difference lies only in word-frequency.
Different words using in British and American English and express the same
things, are called lexical analogues, e.g. lift (BE) – elevator (AE); tin (BE) –
can (AE); luggage (BE) – baggage (AE); sweets (BE) – candy (AE); railway
(BE) – railroad (AE).
The same word denotes different objects are called divergent, e.g. dresser – BE
– кухонный шкафчик, AE – тумбочка.
The 20th century contributed a great amount of new vocabulary to the English
language. For example, the yuppie (Young Urban Professionals), the highearning 25-30-year-old business executive with the smart car, the mobile phone
(or cellphone) and the laptop (or palmtop). The media was transformed: DBS
(direct broadcasting by satellite) and dishes appeared.
Some new words have become part of Standard English which is used
throughout the world: web site (a document or set of linked documents, usually
associated with a particular person, organization, or topic); home page (a
document created in a hypertext system which serves as a point of introduction
to a person, institution, or company); nettie (a regular user of Usenet, a system
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of online discussion groups); netiquette (acceptable e-mail behaviour); bad hair
day (a day on which everything seems to go wrong); Euroland (a name for a
political unit consisting of the countries within the European Union).
Many new words in American English reflect cultural changes in the society.
For example, soccer mom – a typical, professional woman with school age
children; to homeschool – to teach school subjects to one’s children at home
rather than send them to school; to veg (out) – to do nothing, to relax passively;
spam – to send junk e-mails.
There can be provided a long list of word pairs of the British and American
variants.
British English
American English
shop centre
mall
to think
to guess
flat
apartment
underground
subway
lorry
truck
pavement
sidewalk
post
mail
tin-opener
can-opener
government
administration
leader
editorial
teaching staff
faculty
cinema
movie
biscuit
cookie
time-table
schedule
car
auto (mobile)
ground floor
first floor
rubbish
garbage
primary school
elementary school
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carriage
car (of train)
post
mail
kiosk
news -stand
parcel
package
porridge
oatmeal
seaside
beach
stalls
orc hestra stall
tin
can
waistcoat
vest
waterproof, mackintosh
raincoat
corn
maise
5. The future of the English language
English is now the dominant or official language in over 60 countries, and is
represented in every continent. It is an official language in some thirty-four
countries. The two leading normative models are British and American English.
In the 21st century English has become the international language of
communication, both conventional and digital.
SEMINAR 8
KEY TERMS
variant
peculiarity
feature
contribution
distinction
period
word-frequency
lexical analogue
cultural change
original variety
official language
international language
82
TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION AND EXERCISES
1. History of American English.
2. English usage in the UK and the USA.
3. The major differences between British and American English in spelling,
pronunciation and grammar.
4. The major differences between British and American English in
vocabulary.
5. Give examples of differences between BE and AE in the following areas:
a) spelling; b) grammar; c) pronunciation; d) vocabulary.
6. English is the international language.
1. Translate the following into British English:
1) Pass me the cookies.
2) We’ve run out of gas.
3) One way or round trip?
4) We left the faucet on.
5) We’re leaving in the fall.
6) I hate waiting in line.
2. Define the meaning of the following words and word combinations:
Administration, the State Department, the White House, impeachment, rain
check, pink slip, Thanksgiving Day, toll, perks, Broadway, yellow pages, the
green berets, cover girl, community center.
3. Say which of the two words is American and which is British. Translate the
sentences into Russian.
1. We’ve decided to take our vacation in the autumn / fall this year.
2. At his high school the new term / semester starts next week.
3. I like biscuits and sweets / candy.
4. Put that garbage in the dustbin / trashcan.
5. The trousers look nice with that waistcoat / vest.
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6. The lorry / truck came past us on the highway.
7. My apartment is on the fourth floor but I’m afraid there’s no lift / elevator.
8. The people next door are on holiday / vacation.
9. We left the car in the car park and took the subway / underground.
10. My trainers are in the wardrobe / closet.
4. What are the British English equivalents?
stand/wait in line
check
fall
semester
freeway gasoline truck
5. State which of the words are used in America, which in England.
Mail-car, mail-van, mailman, postman, mail-box, pillar-box, special
delivery, express post, domestic mail, inland post, foreign mail, overseas mail,
telegraph blank, telegraph form.
7. Translate the words and word-combinations into English giving two
variants – British and American.
Тротуар, осень, консервная банка, каникулы, бензин, ящик для
мусора, лифт, конфета, грузовик, багаж, метро, брюки, кран,
почтовый ящик.
Test
1. British and American variants of English are
a) local dialects
b) regional varieties of a standard literary language
c) international model
d) communication forms
2. In American English … is used after initials or abbreviations.
a) colon
b) comma
c) semicolon
d) a period
3. When starting a formal letter, Britons usually write
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a) a colon after the greeting
b) a comma after the greeting
c) a dot after the greeting
d) exclamation mark after the greeting
4. How is a tendency to read number “2579” in Britain?
a) twenty five-seventy nine
b) two, five, seven, nine
c) two thousand, five hundred and seventy nine
d) two thousand, five hundred-seventy nine
5. The two leading normative models of English are
a) Canadian and Australian
b) New Zealand and Indian
c) British and American English
d) Irish and four
6. What does the word “smart” mean in British English?
a) neat
b) impatient
c) clever
d) well dressed
Lecture 9
ENGLISH LEXICOGRAPHY
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------1. Lexicography as a branch of linguistics, its aims and significance.
2. The history of dictionary making.
3. Classification of dictionaries.
4. Main types of linguistic dictionaries of the English language.
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85
1. Lexicography as a branch of linguistics, its aims and
significance
Lexicography is a branch of applied linguistics dealing with the theory and
practice of compiling dictionaries. The Oxford English Dictionary defines
lexicography as the writing or compiling of a lexicon or dictionary; the art or
practice of writing dictionaries. Lexicon (or vocabulary, word-stock –
словарный состав языка) is the total number of words that make up a
language.
Lexicology and lexicography are closely connected. They have the same
object of investigation – vocabulary (its form, meaning, usage, origin).
The two main problems of lexicography are: that of the number of the words,
and that of the list of words to be included in a dictionary. As for the number of
words there exist dictionaries of different volumes, e.g. pocket dictionaries with
25 or less thousand words. Among the largest dictionaries there is Webster’s
dictionary, it includes about 600,000 words.
The volume of the dictionary and the list of the words depend on the type of
dictionary and its aim. Hornsby’s student dictionary includes about 100,000
words, among which there are no words used by W. Shakespeare.
On the contrary the Old English Dictionary includes words, used by W.
Shakespeare for specialist.
2. The history of dictionary making
The beginnings of dictionary history are concerned with the international
language of medieval European civilization – Latin. The next stage of
development, attained in England around 1400, was the collection of the
isolated glosses into what is called a glossary, a kind of early Latin-English
dictionaries. Glossary is a list or dictionary of special terms of a particular
field of study or area of usage, with definitions, e.g. Glossary of Business
Terms, Glossary of Computer Terms.
86
The rapid development of international trade led to an immediate demand for
foreign-language dictionaries. There appeared Cooper’s Thesaurus (1565),
Florio’s Italian-English dictionary (1599), and Cokeram’s The English
Dictionary (1623).
In the 17th century, with printing well established, the first real English
dictionary of importance appeared. It was John Kersey who was the first to
attempt a universal dictionary of the language. The most successful of all
early dictionaries was A Dictionary of Modern English Language written by
Dr. Samuel Johnson (1755). The work was tremendous. Johnson had
compiled his dictionary in 8 years. He wrote the definitions of 41,000 words
illustrating their meanings with 114,000 quotations.
The greatest of all dictionaries, the New English Dictionary (NED) in 12
volumes, covered 450,000 words and printed 1,800,000 quotations. The
NED’s first volume appeared in 1884, the last in 1928. In 1933 the
dictionary was republished under the title The Oxford English Dictionary
and contained 13 volumes.
The work that makes American lexicography important is Noah Webster’s
An American Dictionary of the English Language in two volumes, the
predecessor of all modern American dictionaries. Noah Webster is the most
famous of all American dictionary-makers.
4. Classification of dictionaries
Dictionary makers do not by themselves decide what words mean or how
they should be pronounced and spelled – it is a result of careful scientific
research. The dictionary records the customary language practice. Common
reader turns to a dictionary for information about the spelling, pronunciation,
meaning and proper use of words. Dictionary is a book that gives a list of
words in alphabetical order, with their meanings in the same or other
language, e.g. The Pocket Oxford Russian-English English-Russian
87
Dictionary; Longman Dictionary of English Language and Culture; Random
House Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary; Chalker S. Collins COBUILD
English Guides: Linking Words.
There are many different types of English dictionaries. First of all they may
be divided into two main groups: encyclopedic (describe objects,
phenomena, people, etc. and give information about them) and linguistic
(describe words, their origin and usage).
The most well known encyclopedias in English are Encyclopaedia
Britannica in 30 volumes and Encyclopaedia Americana in 30 volumes.
Very popular in Britain and the USA are Encyclopedia International (20
volumes); World Almanac and Book of Facts; The New Century Cyclopedia
of Names (3 volumes); Who’s Who (dictionaries presenting information
about notable people); Cambridge History of English Literature; Oxford
Companion to the Theatre; The Harvard Dictionary of Music, etc.
4. Main types of linguistic dictionaries of the English language
A linguistic dictionary is a book of wоrds in a language usually listed
alphabetically with pronunciation, definitions, etymologies, peculiarities of
use and other information or with their equivalents in another language (or
other languages). The main function of a dictionary is to give the meanings
of words.
Linguistic dictionaries are classified according to different criteria.
1. According to the nature of the word-list dictionaries are divided into
restricted and unrestricted. Restricted dictionary represents words of a
certain
part
of
the
vocabulary (phraseological and
terminological
dictionaries, dictionaries of new words, of foreign words, of abbreviations,
dialectal
dictionaries,
etc.),
e.g.
A.V.
Kunin’s
English-Russian
Phraseological Dictionary; The English Dialect Dictionary by Joseph
Wright; English-Russian Dictionary of Modern Abbreviations; The Oxford
88
Dictionary of New Words; Ellmore R.T. Mass Media Dictionary; Zhdanova
I.F. Short Russian-English Business Dictionary. Phraseological dictionary
describes idioms, saying and proverbs, e.g. Simpson J. The Concise Oxford
Dictionary of Proverbs. Unrestricted dictionary contains lexical units from
various spheres of life, it is unrestricted in word-list and general in the
information it contains e.g. The Oxford English Dictionary; The New
English-Russian Dictionary (edited by prof. I.R. Galperin).
2. According to the information given about each item linguistic dictionaries
fall into general and special (or specialized). General dictionary represents
the vocabulary as a whole. It presents a wide range of data about the
vocabulary items in ordinary use (explanatory dictionaries, bilingual
dictionaries, word-frequency dictionaries, etc.), e.g. Webster’s New
Collegiate Dictionary; The English-Russian Dictionary (by prof. V. K.
Müller); The Russian-English Dictionary (under prof. A. I. Smirnitsky’s
general direction). Special (or specialized) dictionary provides information
to one particular aspect (dictionaries of synonyms, of slang, etymological
dictionaries, pronouncing dictionaries, usage dictionaries, e.g. Webster’s
New Dictionary of Synonyms; Maxwell C. Richard A. Spears. Slang and
Euphemisms; the Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology (by C. Onions).
Pronouncing dictionary records contemporary pronunciation, e.g. Jones D.
Everyman’s English Pronouncing Dictionary. Dictionary of (perfect)
spelling contains contemporary spelling, e.g. The Pergamon Oxford
Dictionary of Perfect Spelling. Word-frequency dictionary informs the user
as to the frequency of occurrence of words in speech, e.g. A Deskbook of
Most Frequent English Collocations. Etymological dictionary traces
present-day words to the oldest forms of these words and in case of
borrowings points out the source of borrowing, e.g. Skeat W.W. Etymological
English Dictionary.
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3. In accordance with the language in which information is given dictionaries
may be monolingual, bilingual and polyglot. In monolingual dictionary
information is given in the same language, e.g. Webster’s New Encyclopedic
Dictionary. Bilingual (or translation) dictionary contains vocabulary items in
one language and their equivalents in another language, e.g. the New
English-Russian Dictionary edited by Prof. I. R. Galperin. In polyglot
dictionary information is given in several languages (more than two), e.g.
ABBYY Lingvo 10 (многоязычный электронный словарь).
4. According to the intended user there are learner’s dictionaries and those
designed for the general public. Learner’s dictionary are for foreign
language learners, e.g. Webster’s New Elementary Dictionary; Heaton J.B.
Turton N.D. Longman Dictionary of Common Errors.
Besides these types now there exist the so-called cultural dictionaries. They
combine their information of two types both encyclopedic and linguistic
dictionaries, e.g. Longman Dictionary of English Language and Culture.
And finally there are ideographic: pictorial dictionaries and thesaurus.
Pictorial dictionary is an ideographic dictionary, containing graphic illustrations
to all topics, e.g. The Oxford-Duden Pictorial English Dictionary. Thesaurus is
an ideographic dictionary, containing lexical units (synonyms, antonyms,
associated and related words) that are put in groups together according to
connections between their meanings and common topic (rather than in
alphabetical order), e.g. Roget’s Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases. A
thesaurus suggests a range of words and phrases associated with an idea. For
example, under word “Amusement” are given words such as: fun, frolic,
merriment, whoopee, jollity, joviality, laughter.
Thus, there are a number of different kinds of dictionaries, depending upon the
purposes for which they are designed. A modern dictionary is intended to give a
sufficient detailed description of the English vocabulary in its present state, and
90
it can be useful to translators, teachers, students, and, in general, to all who use
English in their academic and practical work.
SEMINAR 9
KEY TERMS
lexicography
dictionary
lexicon
usage
volume
vocabulary
glossary
definition
linguistic dictionary
thesaurus
restricted dictionary
unrestricted dictionary
general dictionary
special dictionary
monolingual dictionary
bilingual dictionary
TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION AND EXERCISES
1. Lexicography as a branch of linguistics.
2. The history of British and American lexicography.
3. The classification of dictionaries.
4. Linguistic dictionaries of the English language.
5. Explain the principal uses of each of the following: a) an encyclopedia: b)
a thesaurus.
6. Electronic dictionaries and encyclopedias; on-line dictionaries.
1. Write the answers to the following questions using a dictionary.
1) What is the title of the dictionary?
2) Who is the publisher? Who is its editor?
3) Where was it published, and when?
4) How many words and phrases does the dictionary contain?
5) To what type of dictionaries does the word-book under analysis belong?
91
6) Examine the table of contents. What is the title of the longest part of the
dictionary?
7) Are there any special articles on the grammar, the abbreviations used in the
dictionary, etc.?
8) Does the dictionary distinguish British and American variants in spelling,
pronunciation and meaning?
2. Look up the answers to the following questions:
1) How many different meanings are given in your dictionary for the word
run?
2) Find synonyms for the word cowardly.
3) What is the meaning of the abbreviation UNESCO?
3. Prepare presentation about: a) a dictionary of the English language of your
choice according to the scheme: its history, its editors, dictionary structure,
structure of word entry (словарная статья); b) the father of American
lexicography Noah Webster and his dictionaries; c) modern The Oxford English
Dictionary (in 12 volumes).
Test
1. Lexicography is a science dealing with:
a) studying words
b) word formation
c) communication
d) compiling dictionaries
2. The father of British lexicography was:
a) Samuel Johnson
b) Charles Dickens
c) Nathaniel Bailey
d) George Canon
3. The father of American lexicography was:
a) Samuel Johnson
92
b) Noah Webster
c) Ernest Hemingway
d) John Walker
4. The dictionaries of the series bearing the name A.S. Hornby are for:
a) foreign language learners
b) general public
c) perfect spelling
d) specific pronunciation
5. The Oxford English Dictionary includes:
a) 150,000 entries
b) 250,000 entries
c) 350,000 entries
d) 450,000 entries
6. What is the synonym to the word lexicon?
a) word
b) entry
c) vocabulary
d) lexeme
Modern Russian-English English-Russian Dictionaries
1. Большой англо-русский словарь: В 2-х т. Ок. 160 000 слов / Авт.
Ю.Д. Апресян, И.Р. Гальперин, Р.С. Гинзбург [и др.]. Под. общ. рук.
И.Р. Гальперина и Э.М. Медниковой. - 4-е изд., испр. – М.: Рус. яз.,
1988. – т.1 – 1037 с.; т.2 – 1072 с.
2. Ермолович Д.И. Новый большой русско-английский словарь / Д.И.
Ермолович, Т.М. Красавина; под общим руководством Д.И.
Ермоловича. – 2-е изд., испр. – М. : Рус. яз. – Медиа, 2006. – 1098 с.
93
3. Мюллер, В.К. Новый англо-русский словарь: Ок.200 000 слов и
словосочетаний / В.К. Мюллер. – 12-е изд., стереотип. – М.: Рус. яз.
– Медиа, 2005. - 945 с.
4. Розенман А.И. Англо-русский синонимический словарь / А.И.
Розенман, Ю.Д. Апресян. – М.: «Русский язык», 2000. – 274 с.
5. Рум А.Р.У. Великобритания: Лингвострановедческий словарь /
А.Р.У. Рум. - М., 1999. - 420 с.
6. Таубе А.М. Современный русско-английский словарь / А.М. Таубе,
Р.С. Даглиш. – Издательство «Русский язык». – 2-е изд., стереотип. –
М.: Рус. яз., 2001. – 776 с.
7. Томахин Г.Д. США. Лингвострановедческий словарь / Г.Д. Томахин.
- М., 1999. – 457 с.
Modern English and American Dictionaries
1. BBC English Dictionary. - Harper Collins Publishers, 1992. – 512 р.
2. Cambridge International Dictionary of English. - Cambridge University
Press, 1995. – 1773 р.
3. Collins COBUILD English Dictionary for Advanced Learners. - Third
ed. - HarperCollins Publishers, 2001. – 1824 p.
4. Collins COBUILD Intermediate Dictionary of American English. –
Thomson. Heinle, 2008. – 1084 p.
5. Collins English Dictionary and Thesaurus. - Harper Collins Publishers,
2001. – 1408 p.
6. Concise Oxford Dictionary. - Oxford University Press, 1995. – 418 р.
7. Dictionary of English Synonyms. – Claremont Books London, Penguin
Books Ltd., 1995. – 614 p.
8. English Dictionary for Advanced Learners. International Student Edition.
– Macmillan, 2002. – 1693 p.
94
9. Longman Dictionary of American English. – Second ed. - Addison
Wesley Longman Limited, 1997. – 935 p.
10. Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English. –Fifth ed. – Pearson
Education Ltd., 2006. – 1949 p.
11. Longman Dictionary of English Language and Culture. – Third ed. Pearson Education Ltd., 2005. - 1620 p.
12. Merriam – Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. – Eleventh ed. - Merriam –
Webster, Incorporated Springfield, Massachusetts, U.S.A., 2003. - 1623 p.
13. The Newsbury House Dictionary of American English. - Heinle and
Heinle, 2000. – 1004 p.
14. Oxford Dictionary of American English. - Oxford University Press, 2005.
– 828 p.
15. Oxford Guide to British and American Culture / J. Crowther, K.
Kavanagh (Eds.). - Oxford University Press, 2003. - 599 p.
16. The Oxford Dictionary of New Words. - Oxford University Press, 1998.
– 357 p.
17. Webster’s New Dictionary of Synonyms. – A Merriam Webster, G and
C. Merriam Company, Publishers. Springfield, Massachusetts, USA,
1983. – 1034 p.
95
PART FIVE
ВОПРОСЫ К ЗАЧЕТУ
по курсу «Лексикология английского языка»
1. Lexicology as a branch of linguistics. Its aims and tasks.
2. The connection of Lexicology with other branches of linguistics.
3. Lexical units. The word as a fundamental unit of the language.
4. Borrowings in English. Classification of borrowings.
5. Branches of lexicology. Semantics, its aims and tasks.
6. The word and its characteristics.
7. The morpheme as the smallest meaningful language unit. A morpheme
and a word. Types of morphemes.
8. Word and meaning. Different approaches to meaning. Denotational and
connotational meanings of a word.
9. Types and nature of semantic change.
10. Polysemy in English.
11. The semantic structure of words: polysemantic and mono-semantic words.
12. Classifications of meanings of the polysemantic word.
13. Types of polysemy.
14. Homonyms. Classifications of homonyms.
15. Synonymy and synonymic patterns in the English language. Ideographic
and stylistic synonyms. Euphemisms.
16. Antonyms and parts of speech. Classification of antonyms.
17. General characteristics of the English vocabulary.
18. Standard English. Nonstandard English.
19. Formal style. The properties of formal English and the field of its
application.
96
20. Terminology. Neologisms: ways of forming, groups of neologisms.
Archaisms.
21. What is
a word
combination? Types
of word combinations.
Classifications of word-groups.
22. Phraseology.
A phraseological unit. Types of phraseological units in
Modern English.
23. A free word combination and a phraseological word combination.
24. Word-formation. Classification of word-formation.
25. Structural types of words in English. Affixation. Classification of affixes.
26. Conversion. Semantic groups of converted lexical units.
27. Composition. Types of composition.
28. Ways of forming compounds. Classification of compound words.
29. Back-formation, abbreviation, clipping, blending.
30. The major differences between British and American English in spelling,
pronunciation, grammar and vocabulary.
31. Lexicography as a branch of linguistics. The classification of dictionaries.
32. Linguistic dictionaries of the English language.
FINAL TEST
English Lexicology
1. The central problem of lexicology is:
a) word
b) word-group
c) sentence
d) meaning
2. Archaisms are words which:
a) ousted some new words
b) are no longer used in everyday speech
97
c) are used to express unimportance
d) are used instead of new meanings
3. Semantic borrowings are such units when:
a) a new meaning of the unit existing in the language is borrowed
b) word-for-word (morpheme-for-morpheme) is translated
c) words are borrowed with their spelling, pronunciation, meaning
d) borrowings are fully assimilated in English
4. Morpheme is:
a) the main unit of lexicl system
b) it is the smallest language unit which can stand alone as a
complete utterance
c) the smallest meaningful language unit
d) a group of words that exists in the language as a ready-made unit.
5. Seme is:
a) the biggest element of the lexical meaning
b) the grammatical characteristics
c) a suffix of some nouns
d) the smallest element of lexical meaning
6. Find an example of a free word-group:
a) to read books
b) to cry for the moon
c) to fall in love
d) to fly into a rage
7. Write the American English equivalents for these British
English words:
1) holiday, n
2) lift, n
3) flat, n
98
4) sweets, n
5) autumn, n
6) petrol, n
7) tin, n
8) post, n
8. English is:
a) a Germanic language
b) a Scandinavian language
c) a Romanic-Germanic language
d) a Romanic language
9. English is:
a) a synthetic language
b) an analytical language
c) a mixed language
d) an artificial language
10. Lexicography is a science dealing with:
a) studying words
b) word formation
c) communication
d) compiling dictionaries
11. Affixation is:
a) a way of word-building consisting in adding an affix to the root of a
definite part of speech
b) a way of word-building consisting in adding an affix to the root of a
noun
c) shortening of words
d) a type of morphological analysis
12. Phrasiological units are structurally and semantically:
a) formal
99
b) unstable
c) semi-free
d) stable
13. The words from the basic stock are usually:
a) monosemantic
b) pollysemantic
c) nonstandard
d) formal
14. A synonym is a word:
a) similar in sound but of different meaning
b) similar in grammatical form
c) different in sound but of identical meaning
d) different in context
15. The word “homonymy” means:
a) a word has two or more meaning
b) the sameness of form combined with the difference in meaning
c) a change of meaning based on the association of similarity
d) the process of semantic development
16. The word “polysemy” means:
a) secondary meaning of a word
b) connotational meaning
c) plurality of meanings
d) the process of semantic development
17. Metaphor is a transfer of the meaning on the basis of:
a) comparison
b) contiguity
c) similarity
d) oppositions
100
18. Metonymy is a transfer of the meaning on the basis of:
a) comparison
b) contiguity
c) similarity
d) oppositions
19. Semantics is the study of:
a) grammar
b) word meanings
c) phonetics
d) styles
20. Instead of the term “word” can be used the term:
a) utterance
b) meaning
c) lexeme
d) morpheme
ЗАКЛЮЧЕНИЕ
Учебное пособие «Лексикология английского языка» предназначено
для студентов, занимающихся по программе дополнительной
квалификации «Переводчик в сфере профессиональной коммуникации» и
составлено в соответствии с действующими государственными
стандартами и программой по данному курсу.
Цель пособия – познакомить студентов с основными проблемами
лексикологии и лексикографии применительно к материалу английского
языка.
Пособие содержит необходимые для изучения лексикологии
английского языка теоретический и практический материалы: лекции,
планы семинарских занятий, практические задания разной степени
сложности, темы презентаций, определения основных понятий и терминов,
контрольные вопросы и тесты для самостоятельной оценки качества
освоения дисциплины.
101
Учебное пособие состоит из 4 разделов (Parts), включающих 9 лекций
(Lectures), посвященных теоретическим разделам лексикологии и
лексикографии, базовым лексикологическим терминам:
цели и задачи лексикологии;
тенденции развития словарного состава английского языка;
морфологическая структура слова;
способы словообразования;
значение слова и его структура;
полисемия; омонимия; фразеология;
словари разных типов
и 9 семинарских занятий (Seminars), в которых представлены упражнения
и задания по основным лекционным темам для аудиторной и
самостоятельной работы. Каждый раздел, посвященный семинарскому
занятию, включает список базовой терминологии по лекционной теме, а
также ключевые вопросы для контроля знаний.
В последнем разделе, содержащем материал для повторения и подготовки
к зачету (Part V), приведены теоретические вопросы, а также итоговый
тест, выполнение которого поможет студентам подготовиться к сдаче
зачета.
В конце пособия приводится список современных словарей и список
литературы по данной дисциплине (References).
Особое место в освоении данного курса занимает самостоятельная
работа студентов объемом 41 час. Самостоятельная работа студентов
предполагает:
изучение материала лекции (Lecture) по предлагаемым
лексикологическим
проблемам
с
последующим
их
обсуждением на семинарских занятиях;
выполнение представленных в данном учебном пособии в
разделе (Seminar) практических заданий, обеспечивающих
закрепление и углубление теоретических знаний, полученных
на лекциях;
подготовку сообщений, докладов и презентаций.
Автор надеется, что материал данного учебного пособия поможет вам
понять и полюбить СЛОВО, расширить кругозор, пополнить свой
вокабуляр новыми словами и выражениями и развить интерес к изучению
теории.
102
СПИСОК ЛИТЕРАТУРЫ
1. Амосова И.И. Основы английской фразеологии Л. 3-е издание. – М.:.
2002.
2. Антрушина Г.Б., Афанасьева О.В., Морозова Н.Н. Лексикология
английского языка: Учеб. пособие для студентов. – М.: Дрофа, 2007.
– 288 с.
3. Арнольд И.В. Семантическая структура слова в современном
английском языке и
методике ее исследования. 2-е издание. – Л..
2002.
4. Бабич Г.Н. Лексикология английского языка: учеб. пособие/ Г.Н.
Бабич. – 4-е изд. – М.: Флинта: Наука, 2009. – 200 с.
5. Гальперин И.Р. и др. Лексикология английского языка. М.. 3-е
издание. – М., 2000.
6. Голикова,
Ж.А.
Лексикология
и фразеология
современного
английского языка. Практикум/Ж.А. Голикова. – Мн.: Новое знание,
2006. – 205 с.
7. Дубенец Э.М. Современная лексикология английского языка, СанктПетербург, 2004.
8. Елисеева В.В. Лексикология английского языка. – СПб.: СПбГУ,
2003. – 58 с.
9. Кульгавова,
Л.В. Лексикология английского языка. Учебно-
практические материалы / Л.В. Кулгавова. – изд. 2-е перераб. – М.:
АСТ: Восток – Запад, 2008. – 511 с.
10. Лайонз Дж. Язык и лингвистика. Вводный курс. М.: УРСС, 2004.
11. Минаева, Л.В. Лексикология и лексикография английского языка:
учеб. пособие/ Л.В. Минаева. – М.: АСТ: Астрель, 2007. – 222 с.
12. Николенко Л.В. Лексикология и фразеология современного
русского языка: Учеб. пособие. – М.: «Академия», 2005. – 144 с.
13. British vs American English.www.esl.about.com/cs/britishamerican.html.
103
14. O’Grady William. Contemporary Linguistics. An Introduction. Fourth
Edition. Bedfort/St. Martins. Boston; New York, 2001.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Введение
Part One
Lecture 1
1. General characteristics of Lexicology
2. Branches of Lexicology
3. The connection of Lexicology with other branches
of Linguistics
4. Synchronic and Diachronic Lexicology
Seminar 1
Lecture 2
1. Lexical units. The word as a fundamental unit of
the language
2. Components of the word meaning
3. Word-Meaning and Motivation
4. Types of Meaning
Seminar 2
Lecture 3
1. Types of context
2. Word-meaning in syntagmatics and paradigmatics
3. Polysemy and ways of its development
4. Types of lexical meaning
5. Types of polysemy
6. Types of semantic changes
Seminar 3
Part Two
Lecture 4
1. Homonymy. Classifications of homonyms
2. Sources of homonymy
3. Synonyms. Classification of synonyms. Euphemisms
4. Antonyms. Their classification
Seminar 4
Lecture 5
1. The volume of the vocabulary
2. Archaisms
3. Neologisms
4. Professional terminology
5. Standard English. Slang
Seminar 5
3
4
4
5
7
8
9
12
12
13
14
17
18
20
21
21
22
25
26
27
31
34
34
36
36
39
40
44
44
45
45
48
49
50
104
Part Three
Lecture 6
1. Types of word combinations. Classifications of wordgroups
2. Free word groups
3. Phraseology as a subsystem of language
4. A phraseological unit
5. Distinction between free word-groups
and
phraseological units
6. Classification of phraseological units
7. Sources of phraseological units
Seminar 6
Lecture 7
1. Morphological structure of the English word
2. Word-formation
3. Affixation. Prefixation
4. Suffixation. Classifications of suffixes
5. Conversion
6. Other types of word-formation
Seminar 7
Part Four
Lecture 8
1. British English and American English as the main
variants of the English language
2. Morphological peculiarities of American words
3. Grammar peculiarities of American words
4. Lexical peculiarities of the two variants
5. The future of the English language
Seminar 8
Lecture 9
1. Lexicography as a branch of linguistics, its aims and
significance
2. The history of dictionary making
3. Classification of dictionaries
4. Main types of linguistic dictionaries of the English
language
Seminar 9
Modern Dictionaries
Part Five
Вопросы к зачету
Итоговый тест
Заключение
Список литературы
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54
55
56
57
58
59
63
63
65
65
66
67
68
70
73
74
74
76
77
80
80
83
84
84
85
86
89
91
94
95
99
101
105
Учебное издание
Людмила Владимировна Лукина
English Lexicology
Лексикология английского языка.
Теория и практика
Учебно-методическое пособие
для студентов, обучающихся по программе дополнительного образования
«Переводчик в сфере профессиональной коммуникации»
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