UNIT 5 - Lexical Relations

UNIT 5 - Lexical Relations
Or how are words related to one another
1. Meaning link
• Synonymy
• Antonymy
• Polysemy x homonymy
• Metaphor
• Hyponymy – semantic fields – lexical sets
• Words of similar meanings that are in free variation with each
• Total synonymy is rare because of:
– Collocations
– syntactic usage
– register and context
– different geographical distribution
– time factor
• Words of opposite meaning
• Three types of antonyms:
– Binary antonyms – true opposites – mutually exclusive, also
known as contradictory or complementary (male – female,
dead - alive)
– Converseness – reciprocal antonyms – usual in family and
reciprocal relationship – (brother – sister, nephew – aunt), (to
buy – to sell)
– Gradable or contrary antonyms – usually adjectives, they can
be put on a scale
– (big/ small)
Polysemy x homonymy
• Polysemy –meanings related to one central meaning, branching
• Homonymy – same form, unrelated meaning, different
– homonyms, homophones, homographs
Metaphor and metonymy
• See lecture 3
• Words can be organized into taxonomies
• Smaller groupings are called lexical sets
• Larger groupings are called lexical fields
2. Links in sentence structure
• Collocations
• Quotational compounds
• Phrasal verbs
• Set phrases
• Set expressions
• Clichés – paddings
Sayings and proverbs
Sentences and quotations
• Lexical valency - a binding force between words
• A matter of typicality, no absolute truth
Types of collocations
• Unmarked collocations
• Marked collocations
Collocations vs. phraseological units
• Collocation is the first stage – typical usage of words
• Phraseological unit – fixed sets of words – often a new meaning
– a white lie…
Quotational compounds
• Whole phrase or set of words, hyphenised
– Easy-to-follow instructions
Phrasal verbs
• Many linguists claim that they should be used mainly in
speaking rather than in writing
Set phrases
• Pleased to meet you.
• How do you do.
Set expressions - Idioms
• the last straw
• a lame duck
Cliché - padding
• A phrase that is overused
• Also unnecessary words used to make a speech longer
Sayings and proverbs
• Part of national heritage, often connected with old trades
Sentences and quotations
• Which is the most quoted from book?
• Who is the most quoted author in English?