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why study Semantics?

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abdullah Almulhim

on 21 February 2016

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Transcript of why study Semantics?

Semantic Relations Among Words
* Synonymy
* Antonymy
* Polysemy
* Homonymy
Semantic Relations among
W
ords
and
S
entences

They help to identify the aspects of meaning which are relevant to linguistic analysis.
why study Semantics?
1- To further our understanding of how the relationship between the words and structure of a sentence can affect meaning.


2- To try and find a more comprehensive definition of "meaning" which truly cover the concept.
examples
Polysemy
Bright - Blind

1- He is a
bright
boy.
2- Her eyes were hurting from the
bright
light.
The Aim
The aim of semantics is to discover why meaning is more complex than simply the words written down in a sentence. Semantics will ask questions such as:

"why is the structure of a sentence important to the meaning of the sentence?

"What are the semantic relationships between words and sentences?
Semantics
Consider the following example
Enraged cow kills a farmer with axe.
Synonymy
Word that are pronounced differently but have almost the same identical meaning in almost all contexts.
examples
the concrete form of synonymy is called
"synonym"
Small = little
Large = Big
recall = remember

Antonymy
Words or phrases that considered opposites with respect to some aspects
male female
boy girl
up down
big small
single married
Three types of Antonyms
1- implicitly gradable pairs
2- Complementary pairs
3- Relation pairs ( semantic properties)
Polysemy (polyseme) :
is a word or phrase with multiple meanings. these meanings are conceptually related.
example
Homonymy
Homonyms
: words in which a single form has two or more entirely distinct meanings.
* If these words have the same pronunciation we call them
Homophones
. have the same spelling
Homographs
.
Example
date
Examples on Lexical Ambiguity ( Polysemy or Homonymy)
a. Sarah climbed down the ladder
b. Sarah bought a down blanket.
Example 1
Example 2
a. My dog would always bark at mailmen.
b. The tree’s bark was a rusty brown.
Example 3
a. John was a good man. He donated a lot of money to charity.
b. Bill was a good painter. His drawings always were exciting to look at.
Semantic Relations Involving Sentences
* Paraphrase
* Entailment
* Contradiction
Paraphrase
Example 1
- The dog chased the cat.
- the cat was chased by the dog
* both sentences are true under the same circumstances, and one cannot be true without the other sentence also being true. (
truth conditions
)
Example 2
- the game will begin at 3:00 P.M.
- At 3:00 P.M., the game will begin
Entailment
Example
- The park warden killed the bear.
- The bear is dead.
Contradiction
Example
- James is bachelor.

- James is married.

Practice
Identify the meaning relation for each of the following pairs of sentences :

a) John is single. – John is married.
b) You should see an eye specialist. – You should consult an oculist.
c) The president was assassinated. - The president is dead.
d) Take the elevator to the first floor. – Take the lift to the ground floor.
e) Mary is younger than John. – Mary is older than John.
f) Today is Friday. – Today isn't Monday.
look at the following and decide which type of Antonymy
1- hard - soft
2- man - woman
3- right - wrong
4- true - false
5- nervous - calm
6- husband - wife
7- doctor - patient
g- I will stand here.

h - please stop, don't go there.
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