1. Lexicology as a branch of linguistic study, its connection with phonetics, grammar, stylistics & contrastive linguistics icon

1. Lexicology as a branch of linguistic study, its connection with phonetics, grammar, stylistics & contrastive linguistics

Название1. Lexicology as a branch of linguistic study, its connection with phonetics, grammar, stylistics & contrastive linguistics
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1.Lexicology as a branch of linguistic study, its connection with phonetics, grammar, stylistics & contrastive linguistics.

Lexicology is the branch of linguistics that deals with the lexical component of language.

The lexicon holds information about the phonetic, phonological, syntactic, semantic and pragmatic properties of words and consequently has a central role in these levels of analysis. It is also a major area of investigation in other areas of linguistics, such as psycholinguistics, typological linguistics and language acquisition. Lexicology is concerned with the nature of the vocabulary and the structure of the lexicon; and lexicography applies the insights of lexicology, along with those of other linguistics disciplines, to the study of dictionaries and lexicons.

Lexicology, on the other hand, is the branch of descriptive linguistics concerned with the linguistic theory and methodology for describing lexical information, often focussing specifically on issues of meaning. Traditionally, lexicology has been mainly concerned with `lexis', i.e. lexical collocations and idioms, and lexical semantics, the structure of word fields and meaning components and relations. Until recently, lexical semantics was conducted separately from study of the syntactic, morphological and phonological properties of words, but linguistic theory in the 1990s has gradually been integrating these dimensions of lexical information.

^ 2. The peculiar features of the English and Ukrainian vocabulary systems.

What all this points to is that English vocabulary is really a lot more complicated - and therefore a lot more difficult to learn - than the vocabularies of some other languages. English vocabulary is exceptionally large, and to be fluent in English, you need to have a command of many more words than is the case in some other languages. Furthermore, English is unusual in that it uses word formation systems that are a great deal more complex than those you find in many other languages. It has several different systems, each of which only applies to a limited portion of the total vocabulary. Finally, English exploits the richness of its vocabulary in ways that some other languages do not in order to signal complicated messages.

Ukrainian vocabulary includes a large overlay of Polish terminology. Ukrainian vocabulary is still limited and is not as extensive as that of more developed languages, like English, German or Russian. This can largely be attributed to the lack of a prolonged period of encouraged development. As a result, not as many linguists, poets and writers extended the vocabulary of the literary language.

^ 3. Word as the basis language unit and its main properties.

Word is a unit of language that native speakers can identify.

- New words can be introduced by borrowing words of morphemes (the smallest unit of meaning) from other languages (often happens in the sciences):


- Often, words are created by expanding the semantic range of a current word or by recombining morphemes.

 - All words are metaphors: they are a way of describing something in terms of something else.  In order to understand the metaphorical relationship, one must perceive the connection implied between the word and the object it is said to describe; however, the metaphors may be constructed on quite different attributes of the referent…

A word is a unit of language that carries meaning and consists of one or more morphemes which are linked more or less tightly together. Typically a word will consist of a root or stem and zero or more affixes. Words can be combined to create phrases, clauses and sentences. A word consisting of two or more stems joined together is called a compound.

^ 4. The etymological characteristics of the English and Ukrainian vocabulary systems.

As a language, English is derived from the Anglo-Saxon, a dialect of West Germanic (as was Old Low German), although its current vocabulary includes words from many languages. The Anglo-Saxon roots can be seen in the similarity of numbers in English and German, particularly seven/sieben, eight/acht, nine/neun and ten/zehn. Pronouns are also cognate: I/ich; thou/Du; we/wir; she/sie. However, language change has eroded many grammatical elements, such as the noun case system, which is greatly simplified in Modern English; and certain elements of vocabulary, much of which is borrowed from French. In fact, more than half of the words in English either come from the French language or have a French cognate (words that have a common origin). However, the most common root words are still of Germanic origin.

Ukrainian is a language of the East Slavic subgroup of the Slavic languages. It is the official state language of Ukraine. Ukrainian uses a Cyrillic alphabet. It shares some vocabulary with the languages of the neighboring Slavic nations, most notably with Belarusian, Polish, Russian and Slovakian. Ukrainian traces its origins to the Old East Slavic language of the ancient state of Kievan Rus'. The language has persisted despite the two bans by Imperial Russia and political persecution during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

^ 5.Vocabulary as a system: its development & functioning, the problem of classification of words.

Jesperson considered that grammar is systematic `cause it deals with general facts as vocabulary deals with indiv. Properties of words non-systematically. But modern linguistics professor Arnold proved that lexicology also deals with both general & individ. facts. Voc. is open & changeable system. New words are const. coming in & old words are const. falling out of views. Special new dict. Are published & a special field called neology has been established. 3 ways of voc. dev-ment:

~ word formation

~ dev-ment of new mean-ings & borrowings from oth. lang.

Serebryannikov pointed out intralinguistics changes in voc.:

- loss of means of expressions (motherland-fatherland)

- loss of parallel means of expressions (land~soil, country~territory)

- loss of means of less functional expressions (head-falsie) “Word Frequency Book” Carrolle

^ 6. Types of borrowed words (role in Eng. & Ukr. voc. dev-ment & funct-ing, etymol. doublets & int-national words)

The establishment of Ukrainian as the official language of the Ukrainian Republic (1989) has opened new horizons in the enrichment of its resources, including taking loan-words, syntactic patterns and pre-assembled clichés from English, Polish, Russian and other languages. The truth is that a big bulk of lexical borrowings made in the recent ten years conveys the concepts which reflect new political and economic reality of to-date Ukraine.

The words originating from the same etymological source, but differing in phonemic shape and in meaning are called etymological doublets.

A doublet may consist of a shortened word and the one from which it was derived: “history” - “story”, “fantasy” - “fancy”, “defence” - “fence”, “shadow” - “shade”.

Together with the international adjective international, fifty nouns of general utility have been provisionally recognized by Basic English as International -- widely understood without instruction:

-International Nouns (alcohol, aluminum)

-Names of Sciences (Algebra, Arithmetic)

-International Names used in Titles, Organizations, Diplomacy, etc. (College, Empire, Royal)

There are some number of less general utility for use in appropriate contexts:

-General Utility (autobus, champagne, pajamas)

-Onomatopoeic (Bang - noise made by burst, Meow - sound of a cat)

~Time and Numbers

~New Century : International nouns (computer, nuclear)

^ 7. Celtic borrowings

When the Anglo-Saxons took control of Britain, the original Celts moved to the northern and western fringes of the island – which is why the only places where Celtic languages are spoken in Britain today are in the west (Welsh in Wales) and north (Scottish Gaelic in the Scottish Highlands). Celtic speakers seem to have been kept separate from the Anglo-Saxon speakers. Those who remained in other parts of Britain must have merged in with the Anglo-Saxons. The end result is a surprising small number – only a handful – of Celtic borrowings. Some of them are dialectal such as cumb (deep valley) or loch (lake). Reminders of Britain’s Celtic past are mainly in the form of Celtic-based placenames including river names such as Avon, ‘river’, Don, Exe, Severn and Thames. Town names include Dover, ‘water’, Eccles, ‘church’, Kent, Leeds, London and York.

More recently, though, Celtic words were also introduced into English from Irish Gaelic – bog, brogue, blarney, clan, slogan, whisky.

^ 8.Greek borrowings.

Greek was also a language of learning, and Latin itself borrowed words from Greek. Indeed the Latin alphabet is an adaptation of the Greek alphabet.

  Many of the Greek loan-words were through other languages: through French – agony, aristocracy, enthusiasm, metaphor; through Latin – ambrosia, nectar, phenomenon, rhapsody. There were some general vocabulary items like fantasy, cathedral, charismatic, idiosyncrasy as well as more technical vocabulary like anatomy, barometer, microscope, homoeopathy.

During the Renaissance and after, there were modern coinages from Greek elements (rather than borrowings). For example, photo- yielded photograph, photogenic, photolysis and photokinesis; bio- yielded biology, biogenesis, biometry, bioscope; tele- yielded telephone, telepathy, telegraphic, telescopic. Other Greek elements used to coin new words include crypto-, hydro-, hyper-, hypo-, neo- and stereo-.

^ 9. Latin borrowings

Latin, being the language of the Roman Empire, had already influenced the language of the Germanic tribes even before they set foot in Britain. Latin loanwords reflected the superior material culture of the Roman Empire, which had spread across Europe:  street, wall, candle, chalk, inch, pound, port, camp.

Latin was also the language of Christianity, and St Augustine arrived in Britain in AD 597 to christianise the nation. Terms in religion were borrowed:  pope, bishop, monk, nun, cleric, demon, disciple, mass, priest, shrine. Christianity also brought with it learning: circul, not (note), paper, scol (school), epistol.

Many Latin borrowings came in in the early MnE period. Sometimes, it is difficult to say whether the loan-words were direct borrowings from Latin or had come in through French (because, after all, Latin was also the language of learning among the French). One great motivation for the borrowings was the change in social order, where scientific and philosophical empiricism was beginning to be valued. Many of the new words are academic in nature therefore: affidavit, apparatus, caveat, corpuscle, compendium, equilibrium, equinox, formula, inertia, incubate, momentum, molecule, pendulum, premium, stimulus, subtract, vaccinate, vacuum. This resulted in the distinction between learned and popular vocabulary in English.

^ 10. Scandinavian borrowings

The English and Scandinavian belong to the same Germanic racial, cultural and linguistic stock originally and their language, therefore, shared common grammatical features and words. But changes had occurred in the languages during the couple of centuries of separation of the two sets of people.

The Scandinavians came to settle, rather than conquer or pillage. They lived alongside the Anglo-Saxons on more or less equal terms.

Under the Norman French, particularly, the two different groups fashioned a common life together as subjects.

Under these conditions,

(a) the English word sometimes displaced the cognate Scandinavian word: fish instead of fisk; goat instead of gayte;

(b) the Scandinavian word sometimes displaces the cognate English word: egg instead of ey, sister instead of sweoster;

(c) both might remain, but with somewhat different meanings: dike-ditch, hale-whole, raise-rise, sick-ill, skill-craft, skirt-shirt;

(d) the English word might remain, but takes on the Scandinavian meaning dream (originally ‘joy’, ‘mirth’, ‘music’, ‘revelry’); and

(e) the English words that were becoming obsolete might be given a new lease of life, eg dale and barn.

^ 11. French borrowings

the Normans in England belonged to the Capetian dynasty spoke Norman French; this became non-prestigious in France as the variety spoken by the Angevian dynasty in France, Parisian French, became the prestige variety; because Norman French was seen as socially inferior, it was less difficult to abandon it in favour of English;

subsequently, England became at war with France in the Hundred Years War (1337–1453).

  Even as English was on its way in, the gaps in English vocabulary had to be filled by loanwords from French. These include items pertaining to new experiences and ways of doing things introduced by the Normans.

domains that became enriched with French loanwords include:

-Government: parliament, government

-Finance: treasure, poverty

-Law: jury, verdict

-War: battle, castle

-Religion: charity, saint

-Art, fashion, etc.: beauty, colour

-Cuisine: bacon, mutton

-Household Relationships: uncle, aunt

^ 12. Assimilation of borrow. words ( types, degree, folk etymology)

Depending on the type of feature that spreads from one segment to another we can talk about several major types of assimilation such as assimilative processes involving voicing, nasal or oral release, manner of articulation features and place of articulation features.

Assimilation can be of several kinds. As it always involves a transfer of feature(s) between two neighbouring segments we can conventionally mark the two successive sounds by X and Y. Taking into account the direction of the process, we can then talk about progressive assimilation if the latter works forwards or, in other words, if the feature passes from a sound to the following one. If we have the opposite case, as in our example before – backwards, fromright to left, from Y to X – we have regressive assimilation. Very often there is a mutual influence between the two sounds and then we speak about reciprocal assimilation.

Folk etymology (or popular etymology) is a linguistic term for a category of false etymology which has grown up in popular lore, as opposed to one which arose in scholarly usage.

Folk etymology is particularly important because it can result in the modification of a word or phrase by analogy with the erroneous etymology which is popularly believed to be true. In this case, 'folk etymology' is the trigger which causes the process of linguistic analogy by which a word or phrase changes because of a popularly-held etymology, or misunderstanding of the history of a word or phrase.

^ 13. Enriching vocabulary

As improvisers we do not have the luxury of considering every word that we utter in the way that an author can. Revision is not possible. Mistakes are indelible. The way in which we habitually speak can be a fine vehicle for communication in performance, but just as with our dance it is useful to develop a broad range of options. The richness and complexity of written text is a challenge to us as improvisers in the same way that choreographed work can be a challenge to our dance. The language we produce will be different to written work, but there is no reason why it should not be any less rich and engaging.

A few ideas:

Read lots of books that inspire you and excite your imagination, (this probably means not reading books about improvisation);

As you walk along the street report to yourself all the details that you observe;

Listen to people talking;

Do crossword puzzles;

Every time you hear or read a word that you do not know write it down and add it to your vocabulary;

Experiment with chunks of written text to get a feel for how it was constructed.

^ 14. Morph. & deriv. analysis, deriv. patterns

Similar features that both deriv. & morph. analysis are based on the notion of morpheme but the purpose is different. Purpose of morph. an-sis is to see relations between m-s. In derivational an-sis we analyse the final deriv. step.

Deriv. patterns are charact. by 3 parameters:

~ productivity (is seen by a total number of all the words built after the pattern)

~ frequency (the frequency of usage of the words built after the pattern, we count the number of usages of one & the same word)

~ activity ( lies in its ability to create new words)

^ 15. Affixes, semiaffixes

An affix is a morpheme that is attached to a base morpheme such as a root or to a stem, to form a word. Affixes may be derivational, like English -ness and pre-, or inflectional, like English plural -s and past tense -ed.

Affixes are divided into several types, depending on their position with reference to the root:

-Prefixes (attached before another morpheme) undo prefix + root

-Suffixes (attached after another morpheme) looking root + suffix

-Infixes (inserted within another morpheme) fanfreakingtastic ro- + infix + -ot

-Circumfixes (attached before and after another morpheme or set of morphemes) embolden circum- + root + -fix


-Suprafixes (also superfix) (attached suprasegmentally to another morpheme) produce (noun)
produce (verb) (changing stress)

-Disfixes (also subtractive morpheme)

-Simulfixes (also transfix or root-and-pattern morphology)

-Duplifix (also reduplication)

A separate group within linguistic markers of approximation in English is constituted by metaphorically motivated compounds, adjectives with semiaffixes -looking and -like in particular. From a cognitive perspective, such adjectives, both conventional (bear-looking man, quaint-looking town) and occasional (hairlike shadow, masculine-looking room) when the conceptual correlate refers to such source domains (in the order of frequency) as ARTEFACTS (telescope-like motion, scrubbed-looking skin), MAN (ladylike manners, innocent-looking mouth), FAUNA (cat-like smile, animal-like vitality), NATURAL PHENOMENA (lightninglike realization, moon-like face), PLANTS (baobab-like stature, cabbage-looking girl) and NON-HUMAN CREATURES (troll-like sound, ghost-like faces).

16. Prefixation

a prefix is a type of affix that precedes the morphemes to which it can attach. Prefixes are bound morphemes (they cannot occur as independent words). While most languages employ both prefixes and suffixes, prefixes are crosslinguistically less common. Some languages employ mostly suffixes and almost no prefixes at all. The use of prefixes has been found to correlate statistically with other linguistic features, such as a verb-object word order and the use of prepositions. In the Indo-European languages, prefixes are mostly derivational morphemes .











taking something away, the opposite



more than normal, too much



across, beyond


17. Suffixation

A suffix is a letter or group of letters added at the end of a word to make a new word.

-ness The suffix -ness, which goes back to Old English, continues to have a productive life. It commonly attaches to adjectives in order to form abstract nouns, such as artfulness and destructiveness. The suffix -ness also forms nouns from adjectives made of participles, such as contentedness and willingness. It can also form nouns from compound adjectives, such as kindheartedness and straightforwardness. The suffix -ness can even be used with phrases: matter-of-factness.

-ship The suffix -ship has a long history in English. It goes back to the Old English suffix -scipe, which was attached to adjectives and nouns to indicate a particular state or condition: hardship, friendship. In Modern English the suffix has been added only to nouns and usually indicates a state or condition authorship, kinship, partnership, relationship), the qualities belonging to a class of human beings (craftsmanship, horsemanship, sportsmanship), or rank or office (ambassadorship).

-ward The basic meaning of the suffix -ward is “having a particular direction or location.” Its use dates back to Old English. Thus inward means “directed or located inside.” Other examples are outward, forward, backward, upward, downward, earthward, homeward, northward, southward, eastward, and westward. The suffix -ward forms adjectives and adverbs. Adverbs ending in -ward can also end in -wards. Thus I stepped backward and I stepped backwards are both correct. Only backward (and not backwards) is an adjective: a backward glance.

-wise The suffix -wise forms adverbs when it attaches to adjectives or nouns. It comes from an Old English suffix -wise, which meant “in a particular direction or manner.” Thus clockwise means “in the direction that a clock goes,” and likewise means “in like manner, similarly.” For the last fifty years or so, -wise has also meant “with respect to,” as in saleswise, meaning “with respect to sales,” and taxwise, meaning “with respect to taxes.” Many people consider this usage awkward, however, and you may want to avoid it, especially in formal settings.


Compounding is a highly productive process in English and most languages.  Compounding is a word formation process that provides an interface between the compositional semantics of the phrase and the direct or non-compositional form-meaning mappings that characterize lexical items.In the English language of the second half of the twentieth century there developed so called block compounds, that is compound words which have a uniting stress but a split spelling, such as «chat show», «pinguin suit» etc. Such compound words can be easily mixed up with word-groups of the type «stone wall», so called nominative binomials. Such linguistic units serve to denote a notion which is more specific than the notion expressed by the second component and consists of two nouns, the first of which is an attribute to the second one.

19. Conversion

Conversion is the derivational process whereby an item changes its word-class without the addition of an affix.Conversion is particularly common in English because the basic form of nouns and verbs is identical in many cases. It is a curious and attractive subject because it has a wide field of action: all grammatical categories can undergo conversion to more than one word-form, it is compatible with other word-formation processes, and it has no demonstrated limitations. All these reasons make the scope of conversion nearly unlimited. Conversion is extremely productive to increase the English lexicon because it provides an easy way to create new words from existing ones. Thus, the meaning is perfectly comprehensible and the speaker can rapidly fill a meaningful gap in his language or use fewer words. The major cases of conversion are from noun to verb and from verb to noun. Conversion from adjective to verb is also common, but it has a lower ratio. Other grammatical categories, including closed-class ones, can only shift to open-class categories, but not to closed-class ones (prepositions, conjunctions). In addition, it is not rare that a simple word shifts into more than one category.

^ 20. Telescopy & back-derivation

Is deraving a new word, which is morphologically simpler from a more complex word.

     A babysitter – to babysit

     Television – to televise

Sometimes back derivation is defined as the singling out of a stem from a word which is wrong regarded as a derivative.

Cases of back derivation are rather rare in English 

A particularly productive type of back-formation relates to the noun compounds in -ing and -er. For example, the verbs: bottle-feed, fire-watch, sleep-walk, brain-wash, house-hunt, spring-clean, chain-smoke, house-keep, window-shop.

21. Abbreviation

Abbreviation (from Latin brevis "short") is strictly a shorter form of a word, but more particularly, an abbreviation is a letter or group of letters, taken from a word or words, and employed to represent them for the sake of brevity.

Apart from the common form of shortening one word, there are other types of abbreviations. These include

~apocopations (refers to a word formed by removing the end of a longer original word)

~syllabic abbreviations, (A syllabic abbreviation is an abbreviation formed from (usually) initial syllables of several words, such as Interpol = International + police.

Syllabic abbreviations are usually written using lower case, sometimes starting with a capital letter, and are always pronounced as words rather than letter by letter.)

~acronyms & initialisms (abbreviations such as NATO or DNA, written as the initial letter or letters of words, and pronounced based on this abbreviated written form.)

~portmanteaux (a term in linguistics that refers to a word or morpheme that fuses two or more grammatical functions.)

^ 22. Word meaning

A very simple approach to words is to see them as labelling things in the world. This works well for some words.

It is useful to make a distinction between this kind of "naming" meaning, which is called denotation, and another kind of meaning, which is called connotation. Connotation refers to the associations that words can have in our minds.

The denotation of the noun pig is a non-ruminant omnivorous ungulate.

The American linguist S. J. Hayakawa invented the terms purr words and snarl words to describe words with different associations in people's minds.( thinking ~ day-dreaming, dancing ~ jiggling about)

The connotations of words are culturally determined.
In English, the word "red" can have negative connotations of "blood" or "communism". In Russian, krasnyj, the word for "red", has very good connotations. The Russian word for "beautiful" is prekrasnyj, which contains within it the word for "red".

^ 24. Semantic change

There are many causes of semantic change:

1) Historical causes.

According to historical principle, everything develops changes, social institutions change in the course of time, the words also change.

Ex.: “car” which goes back to Latin “carfus” which meant a four wheeled (vehicle) wagon, despite of the lack of resemblance.  

2) Psychological causes.

Taboos of various kinds.

Words are replaced by other words, sometimes people do not realize that they use euphemisms.

Ex.: “lady’s room” instead of the “lavatory”

3) Linguistic causes

Tendency of a language to borrow a particular metaphorical development of a word from another language. 

Metaphor accounts for a very considerable proportions of semantic changes. 

Language is full of so-called fossilized (trite-банальный, избитый, неоригинальный) metaphors, which no longer call up the image of an object from which they were borrowed. 

Ex.: the leaf of a book; hands of a clock; a clock face; hands of a cabbage. 

^ 25. Metonymic shift

Metonymy is the tendency of certain words to occur in near proximity & mutually influence one another. 

1) The substitution of cause, form effect 

2) Catachresis is a gradual planting of one sense for another for a large or short period of time. 

Ex.:  - sermon (early) – any conversation (now) – religious conversation  

One of the chief consequences of semantic change is the change in the area meaning.

Each word has an area of meaning, it has certain limits. 

As a result of semantic change this area of meaning can be restricted (ограниченный, узкий) or expended (тратить, расходовать (на что-л. - for, on, in)).

1. Restriction of meaning:

~names for classes of animals (“fowl” – earlier - birds in general now – poultry & wild fowl (дичь)

~a number of Anglo-Saxon words shrunk under the influence of Norman words (“pond” – from Latin “pontus” (sea or large stretch of water).

Due to its confrontation with word “lake” “pond” changed its meaning to “пруд”.

  2. Expansion of meaning. It happens as a result of chance situations. (The word “вокзал’ came to Russian from English word “Vauxhall” as the general name of all main railway stations. Now – автовокзал, ж/д вокзал.)

The same thing happens very often with loan words. 

26. Polysemy

Most of lex. items in English are polysemantic. There are monosemantic words (a lorry, a loudspeaker) In case of polysemy, we deal with modification of the content plane. Different meanings of one & the same word are closely interrelated.  Polysemy is a result of:

1.   Shifts in application (adj. red)                     

2.   Specialization (partner - basic meaning; a type of relationship between 2 or more people (business partner, marriage partner, partner in crime)  3.   Metaphorical extension (a fundamental feature of any language) (hands of a person ~ hands of a clock)  

Polysemy has been complicated by the tendency of words to pick up the meanings from other dialects, languages & slang. (executive~BrE – one who acts under the direction of somebody ~AmE – a manager~now: AmE meaning is more widely used.)

New & old meanings become interrelated, form a hierarchy.

They have some common semantic features which preserve the integrity of the word. 

^ 27. Narrowing, extension, elevation, degradation

A striking feature of existing research on lexical pragmatics is that narrowing, approximation and metaphorical extension tend to be seen as distinct processes which lack a common explanation.

Extension is the widening or extending of the meaning of a word: 
    red              ->    'a person with socialist political/economic beliefs'
    silverware    ->   'table utensils: knives, forks, etc.'
    holiday        ->   'customary day of no work', or in BrE 'vacation'

Narrowing is the opposite: the meaning of a word is reduced, rather than extended.

    band         ->       'a group of persons, especially one which performs music'
    building    ->       'something built to enclose and cover a large space'
    doctor      ->       'one holding a doctorate degree (PhD) in medicine or other field'

Words may be extended or narrowed to yield either a more positive or negative meaning, and we then find with cases of

Elevation: brave (which earlier meant 'bright, gaudy'), prize (which earlier meant 'price'), great (which used to mean 'large, important').

Pejoration is the process by which a word's meaning worsens or degenerates, coming to represent something less favorable than it originally did.

28. Phraseology

In linguistics it describes the context in which a word is used. This often includes typical usages/sequences, such as idioms, phrasal verbs, and multi-word units.

Phraseology, an established concept in central and eastern Europe, has in recent years received increasing attention in the English-speaking world. It has long been clear to language learners and teachers that a native speaker's competence in a language goes well beyond a lexico-semantic knowledge of the individual words and the grammatical rules for combining them into sentences; linguistic competence also includes a familiarity with restricted collocations (like break the rules), idioms (like spill the beans in a non-literal sense) and proverbs (like Revenge is sweet), as well as the ability to produce or understand metaphorical interpretations. The first five papers of this volume set out to define the basic phraseological concepts collocation, idiom, proverb, metaphor and the related one of compound (-word). The remaining six papers explore a series of issues involving analytic, quantitative, computational and lexicographic aspects of phraseological units. The volume, as a whole, is a comprehensive and comprehensible introduction to this blossoming field of linguistics.

29. Synonymy

A synonym – a word of similar or identical meaning to one or more words in the same language. All languages contain synonyms but in English they exist in superabundance.

There no two absolutely identical words because connotations, ways of usage, frequency of an occurence are different.


1.Total synonyms - an extremely rare occurence (Ulman: a luxury that language can hardly afford.)(бегемот – гиппопотам)  

2. Ideographic synonyms. They bear the same idea but not identical in their referential content. (To happen ~ to occur ~ to befall ~ to chance) 

3. Dialectical synonyms. (Autumn ~ fall)   

4. Contextual synonyms. Context can emphasize some certain semantic trades & suppress other semantic trades; words with different meaning can become synonyms in a certain context. (Active ~ curious)

5. Stylistic synonyms. Belong to different styles. (child ~ Infant ~ Kid)

Synonymic condensation is typical of the English language.

It refers to situations when writers or speakers bring together several words with one & the same meaning to add more conviction, to description more vivid. (save & sound)

^ 30. Native words

Etymologically the vocabulary of the English language is far from being homogenous. It consists of two layers – the native stock of words and the borrowed stock of words. Numerically the borrowed stock of words is considerably larger than the native stock of words.
In fact native words comprise only 30% of the total number of words in the English vocabulary but the native words form the bulk of the most frequent words actually used in speech and writing. Besides, the native words have a wider range of lexical and grammatical valency, they are highly polysemantic and productive in forming word clusters and set expressions.
Borrowed words or loanwords are words taken from another language and modified according to the patterns of the receiving language.
In many cases a borrowed word especially one borrowed long ago is practically indistinguishable from a native word without a thorough etymological analysis. The number of the borrowings in the vocabulary of the language and the role played by them is determined by the historical development of the nation speaking the language.

^ 31. Vigradov & Smimitsky class-cation

Phraseological units can be classified according to the degree of

motivation of their meaning. This classification was suggested by acad.

V.V. Vinogradov pointed out three types of phraseological units:

a) highly idiomatic fusions

b) metaphorical or metonymical units

c) combinations of collocations that are different in different languages, e.g. cash and carry

Prof. A.I. Smirnitsky worked out structural classification of

phraseological units, comparing them with words. He points out one-top

units which he compares with derived words. Three structural types:

a) units of the type «to give up» (to sandwich in)

b) units of the type «to be tired» (to be surprised at)

c) prepositional- nominal phraseological units (on the nose (exactly)

He points out two-top units which he compares with

compound words because in compound words we usually have two root

morphemes. Types:

a) attributive-nominal such as grey matter

b) verb-nominal phraseological units to read between the lines

c) phraseological repetitions, such as : now or never. They can also be partly or perfectly idiomatic,

e.g. cool as a cucumber (partly), bread and butter (perfectly).

^ 32. Koonin`s classification

1. One peak phraseological units: one form word, one notional (to leave for good, by heart, at bay)

2. Phrasemes with the structure of subordinate or coordinate word combination. (All the world & his wife)

3. Partly predicative: a word + subordinate clause (It was the last straw that broke the camels back)

4. Verbal with (infinitive, passive) (to eat like a wolf)

5. Phrasal units with a simple or complex sentence structure (There is a black sheep in every flock.)

Structural-semantic classification:

1. Nominative (A hard nut to crack)

2. Nominative communicative (The ice is broken)

3. Interjectional & modal: (emotions, feelings) (Oh, my eye! (= Oh, my God!)

4. Communicative (proverbs, sayings) (There is no smoke without fire.) 

33. Dialects of Engl. & Ukr.

The geographical spread of English is unique among the languages of the world, throughout history. Countries using English as either a first or a second language are located on all five continents, and the total population of these countries amounts to about 49% of the world's population.

Whereas the English-speaking world was formerly perceived as a hierarchy of parent (Britain) and children ('the colonies'), it is now seen rather as a family of varieties. The English of England, the original source of all the World Englishes, is now seen as one of the 'family' of world English varieties, with its own peculiarities and its own distinctive vocabulary.

During the 1980s and 1990s the information available on the major regional varieties of English increased dramatically. Five large, specialized dictionaries were published, providing detailed records of regional Englishes: The Australian National Dictionary (1988); A Dictionary of South African English on Historical Principles (1996); A Dictionary of Caribbean Usage (1996); The Canadian Oxford Dictionary (1997); and The Dictionary of New Zealand English (1998).

The Ukrainian dialects in Romania, in large measure, constitute an extension of the dialectal groups that exist on the territory of Ukraine, and in particular, the central Transcarpathian, Hutsul, Bukovynian, Podilian and Steppe dialects. Only the Banat region of Transylvania forms an area of Ukrainian dialect in Romania that is not contiguous with the territory of Ukraine.

^ 34. Semantic fields, hyponymy

A semantic field is an area of meaning which can be delimited from others in a language. Thus we might talk about a semantic field of FOOD or CLOTHING or EMOTIONS. Within CLOTHING we find words for all the different kinds of garments, plus those for making and wearing them.

Semantic Field is a somewhat elastic term. Thus we could say that ANIMALS and PLANTS are semantic fields, or we could group them together into a single larger field called LIVING THINGS. Semantic fields are composed of smaller groupings called lexical sets or sub-fields. Within EMOTIONS, we can identify lexical sets of words for Love, Fear, Anger etc.

Hyponymy - the semantic relation between a more specific word and a more general word. Dog is a hyponym of animal, because all dogs are also animals, but not vice versa. Hyponymy is the converse of hyperonymy.

^ 35. Social varieties

Language is a mental phenomenon (you keep it between your ears) and a social phenomenon (you use it by passing it on to other ears and eyes).

Richard Bailey is Professor of English, University of Michigan, and is known internationally as an expert on social and regional varieties of English.

he identifies the connections between social events and linguistic transformation.

At the beginning of the century, the "Italian" sound of a in dance was thought to be an intolerable vulgarity; by the end, it was a sign of the highest refinement. At the beginning, OK had yet to be invented; by the end, it was being used in nearly all varieties of English and had appeared as a loanword in many languages touched by English. At the beginning, mixed forms of English—pidgins and creoles—were little known and thoroughly despised; by the end some of them had become vehicles for Bible translation. As English became a global language, it took on the local color of its surroundings, and proper usage became ever more important as an index of social worth, as a measure of intelligence, and as a gauge to a person's suitability for employment, often resulting in painful consequences. What the language was like changed dramatically. What people thought about the language changed even more.

^ 37. Homonymy & polysemy

Homonyms can be of 3 kinds:

 1. Homonyms proper (the sound & the spelling are identical) (bat - flying animal - cricket bat)

 2. Homophones (the same sound form but different spelling) (flower – flour, sole – soul)

 3. Homographs (the same spelling) (tear [iə] – tear [εə], lead [i:] – lead [e]) 

 One of the sources is its development from polysemy.

At a certain point, variation within a word may bring to a stage when its semantic core is no longer elastic. It can`t be stretched any further & as a result a new word comes into being. Homonymy differs from polysemy because there is no semantic bond between homonyms; it has been lost & doesn’t exist. Homonyms appear as a result of:

1.  The phonetic convergence of 2 words of different pronunciation & meaning. 

Ex.: race → a) people derives from Old Norwegian “ras”

                    b) running, from French “race”

2.   The semantic divergence or loss of semantic bond between 2 words polysemantically related before.

Ex.: pupil→ a) scholar

                     b) apple of an eye (зрачок) 

^ 38. The sources of phras. units

Most phraseological units are formed from free lexical units through the process of phraseologization. This process can be manifold; however, two main types can be established: change in meaning and change in form. The results of these two types of changes will distinguish phraseological units from free lexical units. Change in meaning — mainly via metaphorization — is attestable in a change in the argument structure of a word. This can mean a change in its semantic argument structure (i.e., in thematic roles) but, on a higher level of lexicalization, free and set phrases might have different arguments both in terms of number and form. Another type of lexicalization is discernible in phraseological units created by formal stabilization. That stabilization can be the result of various changes: either the synonymous variants of earlier phrase components disappear, or a change occurs in the use of articles or possessive markers. A rare type of phraseological units is the group of so called alogisms. These are statements referring to an impossible state of affairs, therefore they cannot be interpreted literally. On the other hand, as far as form is concerned, phraseological units that contain unique components cannot be mistaken for free lexical units as the former contain elements that — apart from set phrases — never occur in the language.

^ 39. American English

Within a large, diverse, multicultural nation such as the United States , the varying registers of local, regional, ethnic, social, gender and other dialects are the basis of much interplay of linguistic power, pride and politics.

Most visible in American English are regional dialects (such as Southern or New England, or Appalachian, Ozark, Minnesotan or Texan), which identify the area from which the speaker comes (or from which he originally came). Local dialect is a subset of regional dialect. This may be specific to a particular city, such as New York.

The influence of social dialect is often thought to be more prominent in class-oriented societies like Britain, but it is also influential in American English

The African-American Variety of English is an example of an ethnic dialect with a strong cultural identity.

^ 40. Canadian English

Canadian English is the form of English language used in Canada, spoken as a first or second language by over 25 million – or 85 % of – Canadians. Canadian English spelling is a mixture of American, British, and unique Canadianisms. Canadian vocabulary is similar to American English, but with key differences and local variations.

Pronunciation of English in Canada is overall very similar to American pronunciation, which is especially true for Central and Western Canadians. The island of Newfoundland has its own distinctive dialect of English known as Newfoundland English while the maritime provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island speak Canadian English with an accent sounding more similar to Scottish and, in some places, Irish pronunciation than American. There is also some French influence in pronunciation for some English-speaking Canadians who live near, and especially work with, French-Canadians.

^ 41. Australian English

Australian English began to diverge from British English after the foundation of the Colony of New South Wales in 1788

Most linguists consider that there are three main varieties of Australian English: "Broad", "General" and "Cultivated". These three main varieties are actually part of a continuum and are based on variations in accent. They often, but not always, reflect the social class and/or educational background of the speaker.

Many Australians believe themselves to be direct in manner, and this is typified by statements such as "why call a spade a spade, when you can call it a bloody shovel". Such sentiments can lead to misunderstandings and offence being caused to people from cultures where an emphasis is placed on avoiding conflict, such as people from South East Asia.

An important aspect of Australian English usage, inherited in small part from Britain and Ireland, is the use of deadpan humour, in which a person will make extravagant, outrageous and/or ridiculous statements in a neutral tone, and without explicitly indicating they are joking.

^ 42. British English

British English (BrE) is a term used to differentiate the form of the English language used in the United Kingdom from other forms of the English language used elsewhere. It includes all the varieties of English used within Britain, including England, but also Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales.

Although British English can describe the formal written English used in the United Kingdom, the forms of spoken English used in the United Kingdom vary considerably more than in most other areas of the world where English is spoken. Dialects and accents vary not only within regions of the UK, for example in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, but also within England. The written form of the language, as taught in schools, is universally Commonwealth English with a slight emphasis on a few words that might be more common in some areas than in others. For example, although the words "wee" and "small" are interchangeable, one is more likely to see "wee" written by a Scot than by a Londoner.

^ 43. Pidgin & creole

A pidgin is a new language which develops in situations where speakers of different languanges need to communicate but don't share a common language. The vocabulary of a pidgin comes mainly from one particular language (called the "lexifier"). The early "pre-pidgin" is quite restricted in use and variable in structure. But the later "stable pidgin" develops its own grammatical rules which are quite different from those of the lexifier. Once a stable pidgin has emerged, it is generally learned as a second language and used for communication among people who speak different languages. Examples are Nigerian Pidgin and Bislama (spoken in Vanuatu).

When children start learning a pidgin as their first language and it becomes the mother tongue of a community, it is called a creole. Like a pidgin, a creole is a distinct language which has taken most of its vocabulary from another language, the lexifier, but has its own unique grammatical rules. Unlike a pidgin, however, a creole is not restricted in use, and is like any other language in its full range of functions. Examples are Gullah, Jamaican Creole and Hawaii Creole English.

^ 44. Cockney English

Cockney rhyming slang is an amusing, widely under-estimated part of the English language. Originating in London's East End in the mid-19th century, Cockney rhyming slang uses substitute words, usually two, as a coded alternative for another word. The final word of the substitute phrase rhymes with the word it replaces. Rhyming slang began 200 years ago among the London east-end docks builders. Cockney rhyming slang then developed as a secret language of the London underworld from the 1850's, when villains used the coded speech to confuse police and eavesdroppers. Since then the slang has continued to grow and reflect new trends and wider usage, notably leading to Australian rhyming slang expressions, and American too. Many original cockney rhyming slang words have now entered the language and many users are largely oblivious as to their beginnings.

45. Lexicography

lexicography, the applied study of the meaning, evolution, and function of the vocabulary units of a language for the purpose of compilation in book form—in short, the process of dictionary making. Early lexicography, practiced from the 7th cent. B.C. in Mesopotamia, Greece, and Rome, was reserved for abstruse words of specific disciplines. General lexicography originated in the 16th cent., and aspects of the modern dictionary, such as etymology, developed during the 17th and 18th cent.

It is now widely accepted that lexicography is a scholarly discipline in its own right and not a sub-branch of linguistics.

Most English lexicographers would find interest in Samuel Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language (1755). He famously defined a lexicographer as "A writer of dictionaries; a harmless drudge that busies himself in tracing the original, and detailing the signification of words".

^ 46. Encyclopedic dictionaries

An encyclopedic dictionary typically includes a large number of short listings, arranged alphabetically, and discussing a wide range of topics. Encyclopedic dictionaries can be general, containing articles on topics in many different fields; or they can specialize in a particular field (such as art, law, medicine, or philosophy). They may also be organized around a particular academic, cultural, ethnic, or national perspective. While there are similarities, of course, to both dictionaries and encyclopedias, there are important distinctions as well:

~ A dictionary is primarily focused on words and their definition, and typically provides limited information, analysis or background for the word defined. Hence, while it may offer a definition, it may leave the reader still lacking in understanding the meaning or import of a term, and how the term relates to a broader field of knowledge.

~ An encyclopedia, on the other hand, seeks to discuss each subject in more depth and convey the accumulated knowledge on that subject. This characteristic is especially true of those encyclopedias with long monographs on particular subjects, such as the first ten editions of the Encyclopædia Britannica.

^ 47. Linguistic dictionaries

Specialized dictionaries (also referred to as technical dictionaries) focus on linguistic and factual matters relating to specific subject fields. A specialized dictionary may have a relatively broad coverage, in that it covers several subject fields such as science and technology (a multi-field dictionary), or their coverage may be more narrow, in that they cover one particular subject field such as law (a single-field dictionary) or even a specific sub-field such as contract law (a sub-field dictionary). Specialized dictionaries may be maximizing dictionaries, i.e. they attempt to achieve comprehensive coverage of the terms in the subject field concerned, or they may be minimizing dictionaries, i.e. they attempt to cover only a limited number of the specialized vocabulary concerned. Generally, multi-field dictionaries tend to be minimizing, whereas single-field and sub-field dictionaries tend to be maximizing.

^ 48. Eng. learner`s dictionaries

A dictionary can be a powerful vocabulary learning tool, but many students have never been taught how to use one effectively.

~ Encourage students to choose a dictionary that fits their needs.  An (English-only) English learner’s dictionary may be more appropriate than a bilingual dictionary or a dictionary for native speakers.

~ Teach students to mine as much information as possible from a dictionary entry (pronunciation, grammar usage, synonyms or antonyms, associated words).

The Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary is the world’s bestselling advanced learner’s dictionary, recommended by learners of English and their teachers, and used by 30 million people.

The Collins COBUILD Advanced Learner’s English Dictionary provides invaluable and detailed guidance on the English language, and is the complete reference tool for learners of English.

^ 49. Oxford dictionaries

The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) is a comprehensive dictionary published by the Oxford University Press (OUP). Generally regarded as the most comprehensive and scholarly dictionary of English, it includes about 301,100 main entries, as of November 30, 2005, comprising over 350 million printed characters.

The aim of this Dictionary is to present in alphabetical series the words that have formed the English vocabulary from the time of the earliest records down to the present day, with all the relevant facts concerning their form, sense-history, pronunciation, and etymology. It embraces not only the standard language of literature and conversation, whether current at the moment, or obsolete, or archaic, but also the main technical vocabulary, and a large measure of dialectal usage and slang.

^ 50. Webster`s dictionaries

Webster's Dictionary is a common title given to English language dictionaries in the United States, deriving its name from American lexicographer Noah Webster. In America, the phrase Webster's has become a genericized trademark for dictionaries. Although Merriam-Webster dictionaries are descended from those of the original purchasers of Noah Webster's work, many other dictionaries bear his name, such as those by the publishers Random House and John Wiley & Sons.

Gove eliminated the "nonlexical matter," including the Pronouncing Gazetteer, Pronouncing Biographical Dictionary, Arbitrary Signs and Symbols, and other appendix sections, plus most other proper nouns from the main text (including mythological, Biblical, and fictional names, and the names of buildings, historical events, art works, etc.,) and over thirty picture plates. The rationale was that, while useful, these are not strictly about language. Gove justified the change by the company's publication of Webster's Biographical Dictionary in 1943 and Webster's Geographical Dictionary in 1949, and the fact that most of the subjects removed could be found in encyclopedias. However, the change bothered many users of the dictionary who were accustomed to the dictionary being a one-volume reference source.

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