Lexicology

Topics: Linguistics, Semantics, Lexicology Pages: 7 (2533 words) Published: July 23, 2013
1. Lexicology as a branch of linguistics. Subject matter. Links with other branches. Problems. Lexicology is a science about words. It studies the vocabulary of the language which consists of words and word combinations. The subject matter of lexicology is separate words, their morphological and semantic structure, and the vocabulary of the language, which includes words, word combinations, their origin, development and current use. Lexicology has lots of connections with other branches which also have word as a central unit. If lexicology studies the meaning of the word, Grammar studies grammatical problems. Both study roots, morphemes, affixes. But, unlike grammar, lexicological function is to name objects. Word is the smallest part of the sentence, and the sentence in its turn is the smallest communicative unit. Also it lexicology has connections with Phonetics. If we change the stress, we change the meaning of the word and even part of the speech: rEcord – recOrd, cOment – comEnt; blackboard – black board, blackbird – black bird. Also it has some links with Stylistics. One of the problems of lexicology is stylistic characteristics. Stylistics studies different stylistic styles. The reflection of the style is in the text. E.g. bookish style we often can find in classical fiction or textbooks; collocations – in speech. And the last connection is with Social Linguistics (Cultural Studies): language is a part of the culture, it’s a reflection of the mentality of people. There are some specific word combinations and associations in every language. E.g. professions: kindness is associated with social workers. There are some special Problems in lexicology: word formation and word combination. Phraseology (science about phrases) studies it. When we start studying a new language, we try to know all the words and their meaning. And especially collocations that are unique in every language: wash hair – мыть голову, wash head – “намылить шею“. Specific feature of English is the Polysemy and Homonymy. Why? 1) It has a great number of mono-syllabic words; 2) Its analytical character. Word order is also very important. Lexicology studies words. A word has a meaning and a form. The approaches to find the meaning of the word are the following: 1) Syntagmatic – surrounding, neighbouring words help to deduce the meaning; 2) Paradigmatic – with the help of synonyms and antonyms. Word formation: 1) Compounding (Composition) – joining of several stems; 2) Conversion – one part of speech into another; 3) Affixation. One more problem – Stylistic characteristics.

2. General and special lexicology. Historical and modern lexicology. General lexicology - part of general linguistics, is concerned with the study of vocabulary irrespective of the specific features of any particular language; Special lexicology – the lexicology of a particular language, i.e. the study and description of its vocabulary and vocabulary units, primarily words as the main units of language. Special lexicology is based on the principles worked out and laid down by general lexicology, a general theory of vocabulary. Special lexicology employs synchronic and diachronic approaches: - historical lexicology (diachronic lexicology) – deals with the changes and the development of vocabulary in the course of time, studies one specific language, description of its vocabulary, vocabulary units, the main units of the language. But every special lexicology is based on principles of general lexicology, a general theory of vocabulary. - modern lexicology (synchronic lexicology) – deals with the vocabulary and vocabulary units of a particular language at a certain time.

3. Word as a language unit.
Language consists of units which are interrelated. These units are: phoneme, morpheme, word and sentence. Each of them has some functions. Phoneme has a function of distinction one sound from another, it’s a distinctive unit. Morpheme is the smallest...
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