A BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO ENGLISH LEXICOLOGY CHAPTER 1
A BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO ENGLISH LEXICOLOGY
CHAPTER 1 LEXICOLOGY AND WORDS
1. 1 1. 2 1. 3 1. 4 1. 5 1. 6 1. 7 1. 8 Introduction What Is Lexicology? What Is a word The Connection of Lexicology with Other Branches of Linguistics Lexical and Grammatical Words and Semantic Fields Aims and Significance of the Course of English Lexicology Approaches to the Study of English Lexicology
1. 1 Introduction Words are the building block of the English language. They are very important in verbal communication. We shall review in this chapter the term lexicology, the concept of word, word classes, the features of word, and the concept of semantic fields. We shall also discuss the difficulties in the definition of the word, the major features of words, and the place of words in linguistic analysis.
Language, Linguistics and Lexicology What is language? 1. a. The use by human beings of voice sounds, and often written symbols representing these sounds, in organized combinations and patterns in order to express and communicate thoughts and feelings. b. A system of words formed from such combinations and patterns, used by the people of a particular country or by a group of people with a shared history or set of traditions. 2. a. A nonverbal method of communicating ideas, as by a system of signs, symbols, gestures, or rules: the language of algebra. b. Computer Science. A system of symbols and rules used for communication with or between computers. 3. Body language; kinesics.
4. The special vocabulary and usages of a scientific, professional, or other group: “his total mastery of screen language—camera placement, editing—and his handling of actors” (Jack Kroll). 5. A characteristic style of speech or writing: Shakespearean language. 6. a. Abusive, violent, or profane utterance: “language that would make your hair curl” (W. S. Gilbert). b. A particular manner of utterance: gentle language. 7. The manner or means of communication between living creatures other than human beings: the language of dolphins. 8. Verbal communication as a subject of study. 9. The wording of a legal document or statute as distinct from the spirit.
• Language is a system underlying the speech of a community. -- Saussure • Language is a system in the mind of an individual. • It is the set of sentences characterized or to be characterized by a generative grammar. -- Chomsky • Language is a set of sentences potentially observable in a speech community. -- Bloomfield
Language is a system of symbols based on physiology, psychology and physics. It is a special social action and a carrier of information used for human communication in a society. [赵世开：《论语言和语言学习》1980]
Functions of Language 1. Social function 2. Psychological function
1. Social function Language is used as a means of communication in a society. It grows and develops with the growth and development of a society. No society, no language. Take the means of transportation for example: buggy – 1. A small, light, one-horse carriage usually having four wheels in the United States and two wheels in Great Britain. 2. A baby carriage. gig – A light, two-wheeled carriage drawn by one horse. troika – A Russian carriage drawn by a team of three horses abreast. coach –. A motorbus. b. A railroad passenger car. c. A closed automobile, usually with two doors. d. A large, closed, fourwheeled carriage with an elevated exterior seat for the driver; a stagecoach. coupé -- A closed four-wheel carriage with two seats inside and one outside. caravan -- A large covered vehicle; a van.
car, bus, motor, moped, sedan, saloon, limousine, shuttle airplane, airbus, jet plane, spaceship
2. Psychological function Language is used to express man’s thought. The process of thinking is closely connected with language. No thinking, no language.
Definition of Linguistics The analytic study of human language. OR The study of the nature and structure of human speech. OR Linguistics is concerned with the lexical and grammatical categories of individual languages, with differences between one type of language and another, and with historical relations within families of languages.
Words in Linguistic Analysis 1. Phonology (音韵学；音位学) 2. Lexicology (词汇学) 3. Morphology (形态学) 4. Syntax (句法学) 5. Semantics (语义学) 6. Functional linguistics (功能语言学) 7. Sociolinguistics (社会语言学) 8. pragmatics (语用学) 9. Psycholinguistics (心理语言学) 10. Corpus linguistics (语料库语言学) 11. Discourse analysis (语篇分析)
12. Phonetics (语音学) 13. Stylistics (语体学) 14. Descriptive linguistics (描写语言学) 15. Contrastive linguistics (对比语言学) 16. Comparative linguistics (比较语言学) 17. Applied linguistics (应用语言学) 18. Computational linguistics (计算语言学)
2. What Is lexicology Word is a complex phenomenon in our daily life. As the name suggests, lexicology is the study of the vocabulary or lexicon of a given language. It deals not only with simple words, but also with complex and compound words. If we want to study words, we shall have to look at words and their relations to other fields from different perspectives. Lexicology is closely related to morphology, semantics, etymology, and lexicography, because these fields also deal with words.
Definition of Lexicology The term lexicology contains two Greek morphemes: lexikon and logie. The former means ‘word’, the latter ‘learning’ or ‘the study of’. So the literal meaning of the term is ‘the science of words’. Lexicology is the branch of linguistics concerned with the study of the vocabulary of a given language. It deals with words, their origin, development, history, structure, meaning and application. In short, it is the study of the signification and application of words.
1. 2. 1 Morphology and Semantics 1. Morphology is the study of the forms of words and their components. In morphology, morpheme is a basic concept. The major purpose of study in morphology is to look at morphemes and their arrangements in word formation.
2. Semantics is often defined as the study of meaning. It tries to explain and describe meaning in natural languages.
1. 2. 2 Etymology and Lexicography • Etymology (语源, 字源学) is the study of the whole history of words. • Lexicography (词典编纂, 词典学) is the process or work of writing or compiling a dictionary.
1. 3 What Is a Word 1. A sound or a combination of sounds, or its representation in writing or printing, that symbolizes and communicates a meaning and may consist of a single morpheme or of a combination of morphemes. 2. Something said; an utterance, a remark, or a comment: May I say a word about that? 3. words Discourse or talk; speech: Actions speak louder than words. 4. words Music. The text of a vocal composition; lyrics.
5. An assurance or a promise; sworn intention: She has kept her word. 6. a. A command or direction; an order: gave the word to retreat. b. A verbal signal; a password or watchword. 7. a. News: Any word on your promotion? b. Rumor: Word has it they're divorcing. 8. words Hostile or angry remarks made back and forth. 9. Word: the Bible.
1. 3. 1 Difficulties in the Definition of the Word The word may be defined differently depending on whether we focus on its representation, the thought which it expresses, or purely formal criteria. There have been several types of definitions. The first type of definition relies mainly on writing traditions The second type of definition considers the word as a thought unit or a psychological unit. The third type of definition relies only on purely form-al criteria.
1. 3. 2 Major Features of Words 1. A word is a sound or combination of sounds which we make voluntarily with our vocal equipment. 2. A word is symbolic and is used to stand for something else. 3. The word is an uninterruptible unit. 4. A word has to do with its social function. 5. A word may consist of one or more morphemes. 6. Words are part of the large communication system we call language. 7. A word occurs typically in the structure of phrases.
1. 4 The Connection of Lexicology with Other Branches of Linguistics 1. 2. 3. 4. With phonetics; With grammar; With stylistics; With historical linguistics
With phonetics Phonetics is the study and systematic classification of the sounds made in spoken utterance, that is, the study of speech sounds. It is closely related to lexicology. Without sound there is no word because every word is a unity of sound and meaning.
With grammar • Vocabulary and grammar are originally related to one another. In learning a language, attention to grammar is as important as attention to vocabulary.
With stylistics Stylistics is “the study of optional variations in the sounds, forms, or vocabulary of a language as characteristic of different uses of language, different situations of use, or different literary types. ” [Webster’s] Lexicology studies stylistic variants on the basis of meanings of words and their changes: synonyms, antonyms, figures of speech, etc.
Same matter expressed in different styles 1. My beloved parent has joined the majority. [literary] 2. My dear father has passed away. [euphemism] 3. My father has died. [neutral] 4. My dad has popped off. [colloquial] 5. My old man has kicked off. [slang]
With historical linguistics Historical linguistics studies words from the view-point of diachrony, whereas lexicology studies words from the viewpoint of both synchrony and diachrony, but especially of synchrony.
1. 5 Lexical and Grammatical Words lexical words are: 1. nouns 2. verbs 3. adjectives 4. adverbs.
Grammatical words are: 1. pronouns 2. prepositions 3. demonstrative 4. determiners 5. conjunctions 6. auxiliary verbs 7. and so on.
1. 6 Words and Semantic Fields The vocabulary is said to be organized into a number of partially overlapping semantic fields. In semantic field analysis, words are grouped together into fields on the basis of an element of shared meaning.
Semantics In programming, the relationship between words or symbols and their intended meanings. Programming languages are subject to certain semantic rules; thus, a program statement can be syntactically correct but semantically incorrect—that is, a statement can be written in an acceptable form and still convey the wrong meaning.
Semantic or lexical field The vocabulary of a language is not an unstructured collection of words. There exist certain meaning relations among them. Lexicologists use meaning relations to propose descriptions of vocabulary structure. One of the concepts used is the semantic or lexical field. A semantic field contains words that belong to a defined area of meaning. Crystal (1995) defines a semantic field as a 'named area of meaning in which lexemes interrelate and define each other in specific ways.
I sit on a chair/settee/stool/bench. Move that table/bed/chair to the other side. Some other examples in GRE: PIG: STY: (A) teenager: rubble (B) roommate: bathroom (C) bird: nest (D) swine: house (E) barnacle: barn
DASHIKI : TAILOR (A) shovel : professor (B) table : singer (C) garment : jock (D) cake : baker (E) book : poseur PEANUT : SHELL (A) atom : proton (B) clock : dial (C) corn : husk (D) emollient : solid (E) enamel : tooth
CHUCKLE : MERRIMENT (A) goosebumps : denial (B) blush : glee (C) scowl : perfidy (D) wince : discomfort (E) shout : fury COW : TERRIFY (A) praise : denounce (B) interest : fascinate (C) invigorate : exhaust (D) soothe : agitate (E) diminish : lessen
Etymology 1. The origin and historical development of a linguistic form as shown by determining its basic elements, earliest known use, and changes in form and meaning, tracing its transmission from one language to another, identifying its cognates in other languages, and reconstructing its ancestral form where possible. 2. The branch of linguistics that deals with etymologies.
1. 7 Aims and Significance of the Course of English Lexicology The aim of the course is to give a systematic description of the English vocabulary. The significance of the course is to help to enlarge our vocabulary and improve our ability to analyze and use English words.
1. 8 Approaches to the Study of English Lexicology 1. Synchronically (共时) Relating to or being the study of events of a particular time or era without reference to historical context. 2. Diachronically (历时) Of or concerned with phenomena, especially of language, as they change through time.
Names of the week Sunday -- first day of the week. Its English name is derived from the Latin dies solis, ”sun's day, ” the name of a pagan Roman holiday. In the early days of Christianity, Sunday began to replace the Sabbath. Roman emperor Constantine the Great designated Sunday as a day of rest.
Monday, second day of the week, derived from the Anglo-Saxon monandaeg, which means “the moon's day. ” Its Latin equivalent is dies lunae, ” day of the moon. ” For the Anglo-Saxons the second day was sacred to the goddess of the moon.
Tuesday, third day of the week, named for the Norse[(古)斯堪的纳维亚语的] god of war, Tiu, or Tyr. The Romans honored Mars, the god of war, by naming the third day for him (dies Martis). Tiu -- the Germanic god of war and the sky.
Wednesday, fourth day of the week, named to honor Odin, or Woden, chief god in Norse mythology. The Romans honored the god Mercury by naming the fourth day for him, in Latin, dies Mercurii.
Thursday, fifth day of the week, named for Thor, Norse god of thunder. In the Roman calendar, the fifth day was called dies Jovis, Latin for “Jove's day, ” for Jove, or Jupiter, the god of thunder and rain, the most important deity in Roman mythology. • Thor -- in Norse mythology, god of thunder, eldest son of the ruler of the gods, Odin, and the earth goddess, Jord. Thor was the strongest of the Aesir, the chief gods, whom he protected from their enemies, the giants. He fought with a magic hammer, which always returned to him when thrown. Thor's chariot made the sound of thunder.
Friday -- English name of the sixth day of the week. The day was held sacred to Venus, the goddess of love, by the Romans. Germanic peoples held the day sacred to the Norse goddess of love, Freya. The Hebrew name for Friday, yom shishi, means “sixth day. ” Among many Slavic peoples, however, Friday is regarded as the fifth day. Friday is the Muslim Sabbath. In the Christian religion, the day is consecrated to the memory of the crucifixion(受难) of Jesus Christ. In the Greek Orthodox(正统的) church, it is generally a day of not eating meat.
Saturday -- seventh day of the week, named in honor of the Roman god Saturn. Saturday is the Jewish holy day, the Sabbath. In the early days of Christianity, the holy day gradually shifted to Sunday, which was the day of the resurrection ( 复活) of Jesus Christ and the day on which creation began. Several Christian sects(宗派), notably the Seventh-Day Adventist(耶稣再临论 者) church, have reverted to Old Testament practice and observe Saturday as their day of worship.
January, first month of the year in the Gregorian calendar. It has 31 days. The name of the month is derived from Janus, the Roman god of gates and doors, and openings and beginnings. January was the 11 th month in the ancient Roman calendar, but it came to be regarded as the first month in the 2 nd century BC.
February, second month of the year. The name was derived from the Latin word februa, signifying the festivals of purification celebrated in ancient Rome during this month. February was originally 29 days long, but one day was later transferred to the month of August. It is now 28 days long in ordinary years, 29 days long in leap years.
March (month), third month of the Gregorian year. March was the first month of the Roman year, named for Mars, the god of war.
April, fourth month of the Gregorian calendar year. April has 30 days. The Romans named the month Aprilis, (from aperire, ”to open”) probably because it is the season when buds begin to open.
May, fifth month of the year. It has 31 days. It was the third month of the old Roman calendar. May 1 has been the occasion for various celebrations since ancient times.
June, sixth month of the year in the Gregorian calendar. It has 30 days. June was the fourth month in the old Roman calendar. When Julius Caesar instituted reform of the calendar, he added an additional day to the original 29 days of the month.
July, seventh month of the year. It has 31 days. It was the fifth month in the early Roman calendar. It was the month in which Roman statesman Julius Caesar was born, and in 44 BC, the month was named Julius, in his honor.
August, eighth month of the year, named in honor of the Roman emperor Augustus.
September, ninth month of the Gregorian calendar. It was the seventh month of the Roman calendar and takes its name from the Latin word septem meaning seven. September has 30 days. Septangle Septenary Septette Septilateral
October, tenth month of the Gregorian calendar. It has 31 days. October was the eighth month of the ancient Roman calendar as evidenced by the name October (Latin octo, ”eight”). Octagon Octave Octogenarian Octoroon
November, 11 th month of the Gregorian calendar. It has 30 days. November consisted of 29 days until Roman statesman Julius Caesar gave it 31 days in his calendar.
December, last month in the Gregorian calendar. December has 31 days and was the tenth month in the Roman calendar. The Christmas season, culminating on December 25, resembles some of the festivities of the Saturnalia(纵情狂欢), a Roman holiday honoring the god Saturn. • Saturn -- in Roman mythology, ancient god of agriculture.
lexicography • The process or work of writing or compiling a dictionary.
Morphology [mɒ: 'fɒlədʒi] n. 形态学 Linguistics. The study of the structure and form of words in language or a language, including inflection, derivation, and the formation of compounds. dog --- dogs; speak --- speaks, spoken, speaking sing --- singer take --- undertake
Phonology(音韵学；音位学) The study of speech sounds in language or a language with reference to their distribution and patterning and to tacit rules governing pronunciation. 音位学研究人类语言中语音组合的方式、模 式及变化。
Semantics (语义学) In programming, the relationship between words or symbols and their intended meanings. Programming languages are subject to certain semantic rules; thus, a program statement can be syntactically correct but semantically incorrect —that is, a statement can be written in an acceptable form and still convey the wrong meaning. 语义学semantics，研究自然语言中词语意义的学科。 也可以指对逻辑形式系统中符号解释的研究。
Functional linguistics (功能语言学) Label adopted by various schools of linguists who wish to emphasize the attention given in their theories to the functions of language in general, or to those of specific features in particular textual or other contexts.
Discourse analysis (语篇分析) The attempt by various linguists to extend the methods of analysis developed for the description of words and sentences to the study of large structures in, or involved in the production of, discourse.
Phonetics (语音学) Of, relating to, or being features of pronunciation that are not phonemically distinctive in a language, as aspiration of consonants or vowel length in English. 语音学(Phonetics)是对人类语言发音进行的 研究，它包括建立一套描述语音的方法和 体系，也包括与之相关的理论建构，还可 以包括由此带来的应用前景。
Descriptive linguistics (描写语言学) The study of a language or languages at a specific stage of development, with emphasis on constructing a complete grammar rather than on historical development or comparison with other languages. 主要特点 : ①注重口语和共时描写。 ②注重形式分析，避开意义这一因素。 ③在结构分析中，主要是研究分布情况和运用替代 的方法。 ④采用直接成分分析法。 ⑤建立“语素音位”。
Comparative linguistics (比较语言学) • Comparative linguistics (originally comparative philology) is a branch of historical linguistics that is concerned with comparing languages in order to establish their historical relatedness. Languages may be related by convergence through borrowing or by genetic descent. • 比较语言学，又称历史比较语言学，把有关各种语言放 在一起加以共时比较或把同一种语言的历史发展的各个 不同阶段进行历时比较，以找出它们之间在语音、词汇、 语法上的对应关系和异同的一门学科。利用这门学 科 一方面可以研究相关语言之间结构上的亲缘关系，找出 它们的共同母语，或者明白各种语言自身的特点对语
Applied linguistics (应用语言学) • Strictly any application of linguistics. But often in practice of a discipline which applies the findings of linguistics, among others, in education: e. g. or especially to teaching English as a foreign or second language. • 应用语言学applied linguistics研究语言在各个领 域中实际应用的语言学分支。它着重解决现实当 中的实际问题，一般不接触语言的历史状态，也 不大介入一般理论上的争辩。可以说，它是鉴定 各种理论的实验场。
EXERCISES 1. Examine the following three definitions of lexicology. What are the differences and similarities among them. (1) the study of the meaning and uses of words. (Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English. 2001) (2) the study of the overall structure and history of the vocabulary of a language. (Collins English Dictionary. 1998) (3) branch of linguistics concerned with the semantic structure of the lexicon. (Oxford Concise Dictionary of Linguistics. 1997)
2. Study the following sentences. In which of them would an alternative selection of words make an improvement, and in which does the arrangement of the words need to be adjusted. (1) They go can the room into and as like shut they the door. (2) You boys are require to give in your homework before 10 clock please. (3) I saw the football match happy and find it very interesting.
3. How is the past tense ending -ed pronounced for each group of the following words. Try to find out that determines the pronunciation used in each case. (1) hated, heated, suited, beaded, nodded (2) missed, worked, flashed, walked, loafed (3) paved, planned, freed, played, breathed '
4. For each. of the following sets of words, indicate what the principle is that groups them into a set. Is the principle one of a common meaning, related forms of a word or something else. (1) oak, willow, pine, polar, gingko, mahogany (2) fly, flying, flew, flies, flown (3) mobile phone, dial, busy, answer, ring, answer (4) gaze, peer, look, see, watch, squint
5. Find out the meanings of the following compound nouns in (a) and the corresponding adjective plus noun constructions in (b). Then mark the primary stress in each noun and phrase. (a) Compound: blackboard, blackbird, greyhound, White House (b) Noun Phrases: black board, black bird, grey hound, white house
6. Count the number of words in the following sentences. Then, make a separate count of (a) open class words and (b) closed class words. Girard emphasized that it is an important part of the teacher's job to motivate learners. However, the teacher's function is seen mainly as a provider of materials and conditions for learning, while the learner takes responsibility for his or her own motivation and performance. (Adapted from Dr, 1996: 276)
7. What does the word bull mean in each of the following sentences? (a) Beware of the bull! (b) I decided to take the bull by the horn and ask him to leave. (c) Stop acting like a bull in a china shop! (d) There was a bull market on the stock exchange today.