конспект лекций, вопросы к экзамену

The notion of the word’s lexical meaning (I). Denotation, signification, connotation (II).

I. Определение Ахмановой: The word’s lexical meaning is “the specific kind of “content” produced (or engendered) by the reverberation of objective reality in the human consciousness that constitutes the inner (semantic) structure of linguistic units with respect to which their material form is the outer (or phonetic) structure”.

There is a constant and firmly established association between a given piece of extralinguistic reality and a certain combination of sounds. So the semantics of the word is not only about the conventional-logical basis, but it’s also about the background of the lexical-semantic system of language vocabulary as a whole. I mean, “thank you” is not just “thank you”, but its meaning is affected by the situations in which we usually use it. But, like Ullman said, there is always a “hard core of meaning which is relatively stable” and it’s modified by the context. That’s why there are so many meanings: contextual, functional, interpersonal, and situational. Sometimes we also take in account the functions of the language, why do we say smth, but that’s not exactly the meaning, so that’s not so important.

There is also the correspondence between the words in a system of language:

Extralinguistic reality    ó

Meaning of a language unit

ó    The system of language

(other words)

Semantic sets (derive from reality)    =>

Lexical sets (depend on a language)



II. Three main aspects of the word’s meaning:

The aspect

What it is (Gvishiani ©)

What it really is (example – a sweet)


The aspect of the word’s semantics which depends on the structure of the lexicon. “The word as a sign. The relationship between sign and thing or sign and concept “(Crystal ©)

Some kind of food.


The part of word’s semantics which “involves the relationship between a linguistic unit and the non-linguistic entities to which it refers. The relationship between a given combination of sounds and an object of extralinguistic reality.



Kind of a nominative-derivative meaning connected with emotions etc.

Pleasure, smiles etc.


06.03.2016; 06:00
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