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                   Курс лекций и планы семинарских занятий
                      по лексикологии английского языка
                       (для студентов третьего курса)


                 Составитель :   Э. М. Дубенец, к.ф.н., доц.


    This course of lexicology which forms a part of the curriculum for the
English sections of linguistic departments of teacher-training colleges is
intended for students of the third year of the day department. It includes
15 lectures and 12 seminars which cover the main themes of Modern English
lexicology: word-building, semantic changes, phraseology, borrowings,
semasiology, neology, lexicography. The material for seminars includes
topics to be discussed, test questions and lexical units to be analysed.
Lexical units for the analysis were chosen mainly among neologisms. There
is also a brief list of recommended literature.
   The aim of the course is to teach students to be word-conscious, to be
able to guess the meaning of words they come across from the meanings of
morphemes, to be able to recognise the origin of this or that lexical unit.


  Language units
  Compound words
  «Stone wall» combinations
  Secondary ways of word-building
  Semantic changes
  Metaphor and metonymy
  Ways of forming phraseological units
  Semantic classification of phraseological units
  Structural classification of phraseological units
  Syntactical classification of phraseological units
  Classification of borrowings according to the borrowed aspect

  Classification of borrowings according to the degree of assimilation

  Classification of borrowings according to the language from which they
were borrowed.
  Romanic borrowings/ Latin, French, Italian, Spanish/.

  Germanic borrowings /Scandinavian, German, Holland/ .

  Russian borrowings.
  Etymological doublets.
  Lexical meaning-notion.
  Synonyms .
  Antonyms .
  Local varieties of English.
  British and American English.


  The term «lexicology» is of Greek origin / from «lexis» - «word» and
«logos» - «science»/ . Lexicology is the part of linguistics which deals
with the vocabulary and characteristic features of words and word-groups.
  The term «vocabulary» is used to denote the system of words and word-
groups that the language possesses.
  The term «word» denotes the main lexical unit of a language resulting
from the association of a group of sounds with a meaning. This unit is used
in grammatical functions characteristic of it. It is the smallest unit of a
language which can stand alone as a complete utterance.
  The term «word-group» denotes a group of words which exists in the
language as a ready-made unit, has the unity of meaning, the unity of
syntactical function, e.g. the word-group «as loose as a goose» means
«clumsy» and is used in a sentence as a predicative / He is as loose as a
  Lexicology can study the development of the vocabulary, the origin of
words and word-groups, their semantic relations and the development of
their sound form and meaning. In this case it is called historical
  Another branch of lexicology is called descriptive and studies the
vocabulary at a definite stage of its development.

                               LANGUAGE UNITS

  The main unit of the lexical system of a language resulting from the
association of a group of sounds with a meaning is a word. This unit is
used in grammatical functions characteristic of it. It is the smallest
language unit which can stand alone as a complete utterance.
  A word, however, can be divided into smaller sense units - morphemes. The
morpheme is the smallest meaningful language unit. The morpheme consists of
a class of variants, allomorphs, which are either phonologically or
morphologically conditioned, e.g. please, pleasant, pleasure.
  Morphemes are divided into two large groups: lexical morphemes and
grammatical (functional) morphemes. Both lexical and grammatical morphemes
can be free and bound. Free lexical morphemes are roots of words which
express the lexical meaning of the word, they coincide with the stem of
simple words. Free grammatical morphemes are function words: articles,
conjunctions and prepositions ( the, with, and).
  Bound lexical morphemes are affixes: prefixes (dis-), suffixes (-ish) and
also blocked (unique) root morphemes (e.g. Fri-day, cran-berry). Bound
grammatical morphemes are inflexions (endings), e.g. -s for the Plural of
nouns, -ed for the Past Indefinite of regular verbs, -ing for the Present
Participle, -er for the Comparative degree of adjectives.
  In the second half of the twentieth century the English wordbuilding
system was enriched by creating so called splinters which scientists
include in the affixation stock of the Modern English wordbuilding system.
Splinters are the result  of clipping the end or the beginning of a word
and producing a number of new words on the analogy with the primary word-
group. For example, there are many words formed with the help of the
splinter mini- (apocopy produced by clipping the word «miniature»), such as
«miniplane», «minijet», «minicycle», «minicar», «miniradio» and many
others. All of these words denote obects of smaller than normal dimensions.
  On the analogy with «mini-» there appeared the splinter «maxi»- (apocopy
produced by clipping the word «maximum»), such words as «maxi-series»,
«maxi-sculpture», «maxi-taxi» and many others appeared in the language.
  When European economic community was organized quite a number of
neologisms with the splinter Euro- (apocopy produced by clipping the word
«European») were coined, such as: «Euratom» «Eurocard», «Euromarket»,
«Europlug», «Eurotunnel» and many others. These splinters are treated
sometimes  as prefixes in Modern English.
  There are also splinters which are formed by means of apheresis, that is
clipping the beginning of a word. The origin of such splinters can be
variable, e.g. the splinter «burger» appeared in English as the result of
clipping the German borrowing «Hamburger» where the morphological structure
was the stem «Hamburg» and the suffix -er. However in English the beginning
of the word «Hamburger» was associated with the English word «ham», and the
end of the word «burger» got the meaning «a bun cut into two parts». On the
analogy with the word «hamburger» quite a number of new words were coined,
such as: «baconburger», «beefburger», «cheeseburger», «fishburger» etc.
  The splinter «cade» developed by clipping the beginning of the word
«cavalcade» which is of Latin origin. In Latin the verb with the meaning
«to ride a horse» is «cabalicare» and by means of the inflexion -ata the
corresponding Participle is formed. So the element «cade» is a combination
of the final letter of the stem and the inflexion. The splinter «cade»
serves to form nouns with the meaning «connected with the procession of
vehicles denoted by the first component», e.g. «aircade» - «a group of
airplanes accompanying the plane of a VIP» , «autocade» - «a group of
automobiles escorting the automobile of a VIP», «musicade» - «an orchestra
participating in a procession».
  In the seventieths of the twentieth century there was a political scandal
in the hotel «Watergate» where the Democratic Party of the USA had its pre-
election headquarters. Republicans managed to install bugs there and when
they were discovered there was a scandal and the ruling American government
had to resign. The name «Watergate» acquired the meaning «a political
scandal», «corruption». On the analogy with this word quite a number of
other words were formed by using the splinter «gate» (apheresis of the word
«Watergate»), such as: «Irangate», »Westlandgate», »shuttlegate»,
»milliongate» etc. The splinter «gate» is added mainly to Proper names:
names of people with whom the scandal is connected or a geographical name
denoting the place where the scandal occurred.
  The splinter «mobile» was formed by clipping the beginning of the word
«automobile» and is used to denote special types of automobiles, such as:
«artmobile», «bookmobile», «snowmobile», «tourmobile» etc.
  The splinter «napper» was formed by clipping the beginning of the word
«kidnapper» and is used to denote different types of crimesters, such as :
«busnapper», «babynapper», «dognapper» etc. From such nouns the
corresponding verbs are formed by means of backformation, e.g. «to busnap»,
«to babynap», «to dognap».
  The splinter «omat» was formed by clipping the beginning of the word
«automat» (a cafe in which meals are provided in slot-machines). The
meaning «self-service» is used in such words as «laundromat», «cashomat»
  Another splinter «eteria» with the meaning «self-service» was formed by
clipping the beginning of the word «cafeteria». By means of the splinter
«eteria» the following words were formed: «groceteria», «booketeria»,
«booteteria» and many others.
  The splinter «quake» is used to form new words with the meaning of
«shaking», «agitation». This splinter was formed by clipping the beginning
of the word «earthquake». Ther following words were formed with the help of
this splinter: «Marsquake», «Moonquake», «youthquake» etc.
  The splinter «rama(ama)» is a clipping of the word «panorama» of Greek
origin where «pan» means «all» and «horama» means «view». In Modern English
the meaning «view» was lost and the splinter «rama» is used in
advertisements to denote objects of supreme quality, e.g. «autorama» means
«exhibition-sale of expensive cars», «trouserama» means «sale of trousers
of supreme quality» etc.
  The splinter «scape» is a clipping of the word «landscape» and it is used
to form words denoting different types of landscapes, such as: «moonscape»,
«streetscape», «townscape», «seascape» etc.
  Another case of splinters is «tel» which is the result of clipping the
beginning of the word «hotel». It serves to form words denoting different
types of hotels, such as: «motel» (motor-car hotel), «boatel» (boat hotel),
«floatel» (a hotel on water, floating), «airtel» (airport hotel) etc.
  The splinter «theque» is the result of clipping the beginning of the word
«apotheque» of Greek origin which means in Greek «a store house». In
Russian words: «библиотека»,  «картотека», «фильмотека» the element «тека»
corresponding to the English «theque» preserves the meaning of storing
something which is expressed by the first component of the word. In English
the splinter «theque» is used to denote a place for dancing, such as:
«discotheque», «jazzotheque».
  The splinter «thon» is the result of clipping the beginning of the word
«marathon». «Marathon» primarily was the name of a battle-field in Greece,
forty miles from Athens, where there was a battle between the Greek and the
Persian. When the Greek won a victory a Greek runner was sent to Athens to
tell people about the victory. Later on the word «Marathon» was used to
denote long-distance competitions in running. The splinter «thon(athon)»
denotes «something continuing for a long time», «competition in endurance»
e.g. «dancathon», «telethon», «speakathon», «readathon», «walkathon»,
«moviethon», «swimathon», «talkathon», «swearthon» etc.
  Splinters can be the result of clipping adjectives or substantivized
adjectives. The splinter «aholic» (holic) was formed by clipping the
beginning of the word «alcoholic» of Arabian origin where «al» denoted
«the», «koh’l» - «powder for staining lids». The splinter «(a)holic»  means
«infatuated by the object expressed by the stem of the word» , e.g.
«bookaholic», «computerholic», «coffeeholic», «cheesaholic», «workaholic»
and many others.
  The splinter «genic» formed by clipping the beginning of the word
«photogenic» denotes the notion «suitable for something denoted by the
stem», e.g. «allergenic», «cardiogenic», «mediagenic», «telegenic» etc.
  As far as verbs are concerned it is not typical  of them to be clipped
that is why there is only one splinter to be used for forming new verbs in
this way. It is the splinter «cast» formed by clipping the beginning of the
verb «broadcast». This splinter was used to form the verbs «telecast» and
  Splinters can be called pseudomorphemes because they are neither roots
nor affixes, they are more or less artificial. In English there are words
which consist of two splinters, e.g. «telethon», therefore it is more
logical to call words with splinters in their structure «compound-shortened
words consisting of two clippings of words».
  Splinters have only one function in English: they serve to change the
lexical meaning of the same part of speech, whereas prefixes and suffixes
can also change the part-of-speech meaning , e.g. the prefix «en-» and its
allomorph «em» can form verbs from noun and adjective stems («embody»,
«enable», «endanger»), «be-» can form verbs from noun and adjective stems
(«becloud», «benumb»), «post-» and «pre-» can form adjectives from noun
stems («pre-election campaign», «post-war events»). The main function of
suffixes is to form one part of speech from another part of speech, e.g. «-
er», «-ing», «-ment» form nouns from verbal stems («teacher», «dancing»,
«movement»), «-ness», «-ity» are used to form nouns from adjective stems
(«clannishnes», «marginality»).
  According to the nature and the number of morphemes constituting a word
there are different structural types of words in English:  simple, derived,
compound, compound-derived.
  Simple words consist of one root morpheme and an inflexion (in many cases
the inflexion is zero), e.g. «seldom», «chairs», «longer», «asked».
  Derived words consist of one root morpheme, one or several affixes and an
inlexion, e.g. «deristricted», «unemployed».
  Compound words consist of two or more root morphemes and an inflexion,
e.g. «baby-moons», «wait-and-see (policy)».
  Compound-derived words consist of two or more root morphemes, one or more
affixes and an inflexion, e.g. «middle-of-the-roaders», «job-hopper».
  When speaking about the structure of words stems also should be
mentioned. The stem is the part of the word which remains unchanged
throughout the paradigm of the word, e.g. the stem «hop» can be found in
the words: «hop», «hops», «hopped», «hopping». The stem «hippie» can be
found in the words: «hippie», «hippies», «hippie’s», «hippies’». The stem
«job-hop» can be found in the words : «job-hop», «job-hops», «job-hopped»,
  So stems, the same as words, can be simple, derived, compound and
compound-derived. Stems have not only the lexical meaning but also
grammatical (part-of-speech) meaning, they can be noun stems («girl» in the
adjective «girlish»), adjective stems («girlish» in the noun
«girlishness»), verb stems («expell» in the noun «expellee») etc. They
differ from words by the absence of inflexions  in their structure, they
can be used only in the structure of words.
  Sometimes it is rather difficult to distinguish between simple and
derived words, especially in the cases of phonetic borrowings from other
languages and of native words with blocked (unique) root morphemes, e.g.
«perestroika», «cranberry», «absence» etc.
  As far as words with splinters are concerned it is difficult to
distinguish between derived words and compound-shortened words. If a
splinter is treated as an affix (or a semi-affix) the word can be called
derived , e.g.-, «telescreen», «maxi-taxi» , «shuttlegate», «cheeseburger».
But if the splinter is treated as a lexical shortening of one of the stems
, the word can be called compound-shortened word formed from a word
combination where one of the components was shortened, e.g. «busnapper»
was formed from « bus kidnapper», «minijet» from «miniature jet».
  In the English language of the second half of the twentieth century there
developed so called block compounds, that is compound words which have a
uniting stress but a split spelling, such as «chat show», «pinguin suit»
etc. Such compound words can be easily mixed up with word-groups of the
type «stone wall», so called nominative binomials. Such linguistic units
serve to denote a notion which is more specific than the notion expressed
by the second component and consists of two nouns, the first of which is an
attribute to the second one. If we compare a nominative binomial with a
compound noun with the structure N+N we shall see that a nominative
binomial has no unity of stress. The change of the order of its components
will change its lexical meaning, e.g. «vid kid» is «a kid who is a video
fan» while «kid vid» means «a video-film for kids» or else «lamp oil» means
«oil for lamps» and «oil lamp» means «a lamp which uses oil for burning».
  Among language units we can also point out word combinations of different
structural types of idiomatic and non-idiomatic character, such as «the
first fiddle», «old salt» and «round table», «high road». There are also
sentences which are studied by grammarians.
  Thus, we can draw the conclusion that in Modern English the following
language units can be mentioned: morphemes, splinters, words, nominative
binomials, non-idiomatic and idiomatic word-combinations, sentences.


  Word-building is one of the main ways of enriching vocabulary. There are
four main ways of word-building in modern English: affixation, composition,
conversion, abbreviation. There are also secondary ways of word-building:
sound interchange, stress interchange, sound imitation, blends, back


  Affixation is one of the most productive ways of word-building throughout
the history of English. It consists in adding an affix to the stem of a
definite part of speech. Affixation is divided into suffixation and

  The main function of suffixes in Modern English is to form one part of
speech from another, the secondary function is to change the lexical
meaning of the same part of speech. ( e.g. «educate» is a verb, «educatee»
is a noun, and « music» is a noun, «musicdom» is also a noun) .
  There are different classifications of suffixes :
  1. Part-of-speech classification. Suffixes which can form different parts
of speech are given here :
  a) noun-forming suffixes, such as : -er (criticizer), -dom (officialdom),
-ism (ageism),
  b) adjective-forming suffixes, such as : -able (breathable), less
(symptomless), -ous (prestigious),
  c) verb-forming suffixes, such as -ize (computerize) , -ify (micrify),
  d) adverb-forming suffixes , such as : -ly (singly), -ward (tableward),
  e) numeral-forming suffixes, such as -teen (sixteen), -ty (seventy).

  2. Semantic classification . Suffixes changing the lexical meaning of the
stem can be subdivided into groups, e.g. noun-forming suffixes can denote:
  a) the agent of the action, e.g. -er (experimenter), -ist (taxist), -ent
  b) nationality, e.g. -ian (Russian), -ese (Japanese), -ish (English),
  c) collectivity, e.g. -dom (moviedom), -ry (peasantry, -ship
(readership), -ati ( literati),
  d) diminutiveness, e.g. -ie (horsie), -let (booklet), -ling (gooseling),
-ette (kitchenette),
  e) quality, e.g. -ness (copelessness), -ity (answerability).

  3. Lexico-grammatical character of the stem. Suffixes which can be added
to certain groups of stems are subdivided into:
  a) suffixes added to verbal stems, such as : -er (commuter),  -ing
(suffering), - able (flyable), -ment (involvement), -ation
  b) suffixes added to noun stems, such as : -less (smogless), ful
(roomful), -ism (adventurism), -ster (pollster), -nik (filmnik), -ish
  c) suffixes added to adjective stems, such as : -en (weaken), -ly
(pinkly),  -ish   (longish),  -ness  (clannishness).

  4. Origin of suffixes. Here we can point out the following groups:
  a) native (Germanic), such as -er,-ful, -less, -ly.
  b) Romanic, such as : -tion, -ment, -able, -eer.
  c) Greek, such as : -ist, -ism, -ize.
  d) Russian, such as -nik.

  5. Productivity. Here we can point out the following groups:
  a) productive, such as : -er, -ize, --ly, -ness.
  b) semi-productive, such as : -eer, -ette, -ward.
  c) non-productive , such as : -ard (drunkard), -th (length).

  Suffixes can be polysemantic, such as : -er can form nouns with the
following meanings : agent,doer of the action expressed by the stem
(speaker), profession, occupation (teacher), a device, a tool
(transmitter). While speaking about suffixes we should also mention
compound suffixes which are added to the stem at the same time, such as
-ably, -ibly, (terribly, reasonably), -ation (adaptation from adapt).
  There are also disputable cases whether we have a suffix or a root
morpheme in the structure of a word, in such cases we call such morphemes
semi-suffixes, and words with such suffixes can be classified either as
derived words or as compound words, e.g. -gate (Irangate), -burger
(cheeseburger), -aholic (workaholic) etc.


  Prefixation is the formation of words by means of adding a prefix to the
stem. In English it is characteristic for forming verbs. Prefixes are more
independent than suffixes. Prefixes can be classified according to the
nature of words in which they are used : prefixes used in notional words
and prefixes used in functional words. Prefixes used in notional words are
proper prefixes which are bound morphemes, e.g. un- (unhappy). Prefixes
used in functional words are semi-bound morphemes because they are met in
the language as words, e.g. over- (overhead) ( cf over the table ).
  The main function of prefixes in English is to change the lexical meaning
of the same part of speech. But the recent research showed that about
twenty-five prefixes in Modern English form one part of speech from another
(bebutton, interfamily, postcollege etc).
   Prefixes can be classified according to different principles :

  1. Semantic classification :
  a) prefixes of negative meaning, such as : in- (invaluable), non-
(nonformals), un- (unfree) etc,
  b) prefixes denoting repetition or reversal actions, such as: de-
(decolonize), re- (revegetation), dis- (disconnect),
  c) prefixes denoting time, space, degree relations, such as : inter-
(interplanetary) , hyper- (hypertension), ex- (ex-student), pre- (pre-
election), over- (overdrugging) etc.

  2. Origin of prefixes:
  a) native (Germanic), such as: un-, over-, under- etc.
  b) Romanic, such as : in-, de-, ex-, re- etc.
  c) Greek, such as : sym-, hyper- etc.

  When we analyze such words as : adverb, accompany where we can find the
root of the word (verb, company) we may treat ad-, ac- as prefixes though
they were never used as prefixes to form new words in English and were
borrowed from Romanic languages together with words. In such cases we can
treat them as derived words. But some scientists treat them as simple
words. Another group of words with a disputable structure are such as :
contain, retain, detain and conceive, receive, deceive where we can see
that re-, de-, con- act as prefixes and -tain, -ceive can be understood as
roots. But in English these combinations of sounds have no lexical meaning
and are called pseudo-morphemes. Some scientists treat such words as simple
words, others as derived ones.
  There are some prefixes which can be treated as root morphemes by some
scientists, e.g. after- in the word afternoon. American lexicographers
working on Webster dictionaries treat such words as compound words. British
lexicographers treat such words as derived ones.


  Composition is the way of wordbuilding when a word is formed by joining
two or more stems to form one word. The structural unity of a compound word
depends upon : a) the unity of stress, b) solid or hyphonated spelling, c)
semantic unity, d) unity of morphological and syntactical functioning.
These are charachteristic features of compound words in all languages. For
English compounds some of these factors are not very reliable. As a rule
English compounds have one uniting stress (usually on the first component),
e.g. hard-cover, best-seller. We can also have a double stress in an
English compound, with the main stress on the first component and with a
secondary stress on the second component, e.g. blood-vessel. The third
pattern of stresses is two level stresses, e.g. snow-white,sky-blue. The
third pattern is easily mixed up with word-groups unless they have solid or
hyphonated spelling.
  Spelling in English compounds is not very reliable as well because they
can have different spelling even in the same text, e.g. war-ship, blood-
vessel can be spelt through a hyphen and also with a break, iinsofar,
underfoot can be spelt solidly and with a break. All the more so that there
has appeared in Modern English a special type of compound words which are
called block compounds, they have one uniting stress but are spelt with a
break, e.g. air piracy, cargo module, coin change, pinguin suit etc.
  The semantic unity of a compound word is often very strong. In such cases
we have idiomatic compounds where the meaning of the whole is not a sum of
meanings of its components, e.g. to ghostwrite, skinhead, brain-drain etc.
In nonidiomatic compounds semantic unity is not strong, e. g., airbus, to
bloodtransfuse, astrodynamics etc.
  English compounds have the unity of morphological and syntactical
functioning. They are used in a sentence as one part of it and only one
component changes grammatically, e.g. These girls are chatter-boxes.
«Chatter-boxes» is a predicative in the sentence and only the second
component changes grammatically.
  There are two characteristic features of English compounds:
  a) Both components in an English compound are free stems, that is they
can be used as words with a distinctive meaning of their own. The sound
pattern will be the same except for the stresses, e.g. «a green-house» and
«a green house». Whereas for example in Russian compounds the stems are
bound morphemes, as a rule.
  b) English compounds have a two-stem pattern, with the exception of
compound words which have form-word stems in their structure, e.g. middle-
of-the-road, off-the-record, up-and-doing etc. The two-stem pattern
distinguishes English compounds from German ones.

                       WAYS OF FORMING COMPOUND WORDS.
  Compound words in English can be formed not only by means of composition
but also by means of :
  a) reduplication, e.g. too-too, and also by means of reduplicatin
combined with sound interchange , e.g. rope-ripe,
  b) conversion from word-groups, e.g. to micky-mouse, can-do, makeup etc,
  c) back formation from compound nouns or word-groups, e.g. to
bloodtransfuse, to fingerprint etc ,
  d) analogy, e.g. lie-in ( on the analogy with sit-in) and also phone-in,
brawn-drain (on the analogy with brain-drain) etc.


  1. According to the parts of speech compounds are subdivided into:
  a) nouns, such as : baby-moon, globe-trotter,
  b) adjectives, such as : free-for-all, power-happy,
  c) verbs, such as : to honey-moon, to baby-sit, to henpeck,
  d) adverbs, such as: downdeep, headfirst,
  e) prepositions, such as: into, within,
  f) numerals, such as : fifty-five.

  2. According to the way components are joined together compounds are
divided into:
  a) neutral, which are formed by joining together two stems without any
joining morpheme, e.g. ball-point, to windowshop,
  b) morphological where components are joined by a linking element :
vowels «o» or «i» or the consonant «s», e.g. {«astrospace», «handicraft»,
  c) syntactical where the components are joined by means of form-word
stems, e.g. here-and-now, free-for-all., do-or-die .

  3. According to their structure compounds are subdivided into:

  a) compound words proper which consist of two stems, e.g. to job-hunt,
train-sick, go-go, tip-top ,

  b) derivational compounds, where besides the stems we have affixes, e.g.
ear-minded, hydro-skimmer,

  c) compound words consisting of three or more stems, e.g. cornflower-
blue, eggshell-thin, singer-songwriter,

  d) compound-shortened words, e.g. boatel, tourmobile, VJ-day, motocross,
intervision, Eurodollar, Camford.

  4. According to the relations between the components compound words are
subdivided into :


  a) subordinative compounds where one of the components is the semantic
and the structural centre and the second component is subordinate; these
subordinative relations can be different:

  with comparative relations, e.g. honey-sweet, eggshell-thin, with
limiting relations, e.g. breast-high, knee-deep, with emphatic relations,
e.g. dog-cheap, with objective relations, e.g. gold-rich, with cause
relations, e.g. love-sick, with space relations, e.g. top-heavy, with time
relations, e.g. spring-fresh, with subjective relations, e.g. foot-sore etc

  b) coordinative compounds where both components are semantically
independent. Here belong such compounds when one person (object) has two
functions, e.g. secretary-stenographer, woman-doctor, Oxbridge etc. Such
compounds are called additive. This group includes also compounds formed by
means of reduplication, e.g. fifty-fifty, no-no, and also compounds formed
with the help of rhythmic stems (reduplication combined with sound
interchange) e.g. criss-cross, walkie-talkie.

  5. According to the order of the components compounds are divided into
compounds with direct order, e.g. kill-joy, and compounds with indirect
order, e.g. nuclear-free, rope-ripe .


  Conversion is a characteristic feature of the English word-building
system. It is also called affixless derivation or zero-suffixation. The
term «conversion» first appeared in the book by Henry Sweet «New English
Grammar» in 1891. Conversion is treated differently by different
scientists, e.g. prof. A.I. Smirntitsky treats conversion as a
morphological way of forming words when one part of speech is formed from
another part of speech by changing its paradigm, e.g. to form the verb «to
dial» from the noun «dial» we change the paradigm of the noun (a
dial,dials) for the paradigm of a regular verb (I dial, he dials, dialed,
dialing). A. Marchand in his book «The Categories and Types of Present-day
English» treats conversion as a morphological-syntactical word-building
because we have not only the change of the paradigm, but also the change of
the syntactic function, e.g. I need some good paper for my room. (The noun
«paper» is an object in the sentence). I paper my room every year. (The
verb «paper» is the predicate in the sentence).
  Conversion is the main way of forming verbs in Modern English. Verbs can
be formed from nouns of different semantic groups and have different
meanings because of that, e.g.
  a) verbs have instrumental meaning if they are formed from nouns denoting
parts of a human body e.g. to eye, to finger, to elbow, to shoulder etc.
They have instrumental meaning if they are formed from nouns denoting
tools, machines, instruments, weapons, e.g. to hammer, to machine-gun, to
rifle, to nail,
  b) verbs can denote an action characteristic of the living being denoted
by the noun from which they have been converted, e.g. to crowd, to wolf, to
  c) verbs can denote acquisition, addition or deprivation if they are
formed from nouns denoting an object, e.g. to fish, to dust, to peel, to
  d) verbs can denote an action performed at the place denoted by the noun
from which they have been converted, e.g. to park, to garage, to bottle, to
corner, to pocket,
  e) verbs can denote an action performed at the time denoted by the noun
from which they have been converted e.g. to winter, to week-end .
  Verbs can be also converted from adjectives, in such cases they denote
the change of the state, e.g. to tame (to become or make tame) , to clean,
to slim etc.
  Nouns can also be formed by means of conversion from verbs. Converted
nouns can denote:
  a) instant of an action e.g. a jump, a move,
  b) process or state e.g. sleep, walk,
  c) agent of the action expressed by the verb from which the noun has been
converted, e.g. a help, a flirt, a scold ,
  d) object or result of the action expressed by the verb from which the
noun has been converted, e.g. a burn, a find, a purchase,
  e) place of the action expressed by the verb from which the noun has been
converted, e.g. a drive, a stop, a walk.
  Many nouns converted from verbs can be used only in the Singular form and
denote momentaneous actions. In such cases we have partial conversion. Such
deverbal nouns are often used with such verbs as : to have, to get, to take
etc., e.g. to have a try, to give a push, to take a swim .


  In cases of conversion the problem of criteria of semantic derivation
arises : which of the converted pair is primary and which is converted from
it. The problem was first analized by prof. A.I. Smirnitsky. Later on P.A.
Soboleva developed his idea and worked out the following criteria:
  1. If the lexical meaning of the root morpheme and the lexico-grammatical
meaning of the stem coincide the word is primary, e.g. in cases pen - to
pen, father - to father the nouns are names of an object and a living
being. Therefore in the nouns «pen» and «father» the lexical meaning of the
root and the lexico-grammatical meaning of the stem coincide. The verbs «to
pen» and « to father» denote an action, a process therefore the lexico-
grammatical meanings of the stems do not coincide with the lexical meanings
of the roots. The verbs have a complex semantic structure and they were
converted from nouns.
  2. If we compare a converted pair with a synonymic word pair which was
formed by means of suffixation we can find out which of the pair is
primary. This criterion can be applied only to nouns converted from verbs,
e.g. «chat» n. and «chat» v. can be compared with «conversation» -
  3. The criterion based on derivational relations is of more universal
character. In this case we must take a word-cluster of relative words to
which the converted pair belongs. If the root stem of the word-cluster has
suffixes added to a noun stem the noun is primary in the converted pair and
vica versa, e.g. in the word-cluster : hand n., hand v., handy, handful the
derived words have suffixes added to a noun stem, that is why the noun is
primary and the verb is converted from it. In the word-cluster: dance n.,
dance v., dancer, dancing we see that the primary word is a verb and the
noun is converted from it.


  Some scientists (Yespersen, Kruisinga ) refer substantivization of
adjectives to conversion. But most scientists disagree with them because in
cases of substantivization of adjectives we have quite different changes in
the language. Substantivization is the result of ellipsis (syntactical
shortening ) when a word combination with a semantically strong attribute
loses its semantically weak noun (man, person etc), e.g. «a grown-up
person» is shortened to «a grown-up». In cases of perfect substantivization
the attribute takes the paradigm of a countable noun , e.g. a criminal,
criminals, a criminal’s (mistake) , criminals’ (mistakes). Such words are
used in a sentence in the same function as nouns, e.g. I am fond of
musicals. (musical comedies).
  There are also two types of partly substantivized adjectives:
  those which have only the plural form and have the meaning of collective
nouns, such as: sweets, news, empties, finals, greens,
   those which have only the singular form and are used with the definite
article. They also have the meaning of collective nouns and denote a class,
a nationality, a group of people, e.g. the rich, the English, the dead .


                         «STONE WALL» COMBINATIONS.
  The problem whether adjectives can be formed by means of conversion from
nouns is the subject of many discussions. In Modern English there are a lot
of word combinations of the type , e.g. price rise, wage freeze, steel
helmet, sand castle etc.
  If the first component of such units is an adjective converted from a
noun, combinations of this type are free word-groups typical of English
(adjective + noun). This point of view is proved by O. Yespersen by the
following facts:
  1. «Stone» denotes some quality of the noun «wall».
  2. «Stone» stands before the word it modifies, as adjectives in the
function of an attribute do in English.
  3. «Stone» is used in the Singular though its meaning in most cases is
plural,and adjectives in English have no plural form.
  4. There are some cases when the first component is used in the
Comparative or the Superlative degree, e.g. the bottomest end of the scale.
  5. The first component can have an adverb which characterizes it, and
adjectives are characterized by adverbs, e.g. a purely family gathering.
  6. The first component can be used in the same syntactical function with
a proper adjective to characterize the same noun, e.g. lonely bare stone
  7. After the first component the pronoun «one» can be used instead of a
noun, e.g. I shall not put on a silk dress, I shall put on a cotton one.
  However Henry Sweet and some other scientists say that these criteria are
not characterisitc of the majority of such units.
   They consider the first component of such units to be a noun in the
function of an attribute because in Modern English almost all parts of
speech and even word-groups and sentences can be used in the function of an
attribute, e.g. the then president (an adverb), out-of-the-way vilages (a
word-group), a devil-may-care speed (a sentence).
  There are different semantic relations between the components of «stone
wall» combinations. E.I. Chapnik classified them into the following groups:
  1. time relations, e.g. evening paper,
  2. space relations, e.g. top floor,
  3. relations between the object and the material of which it is made,
e.g. steel helmet,
  4. cause relations, e.g. war orphan,
  5. relations between a part and the whole, e.g. a crew member,
  6. relations between the object and an action, e.g. arms production,
  7. relations between the agent and an action e.g. government threat,
price rise,
  8. relations between the object and its designation, e.g. reception hall,
  9. the first component denotes the head, organizer of the characterized
object, e.g. Clinton government, Forsyte family,
  10. the first component denotes the field of activity of the second
component, e.g. language teacher, psychiatry doctor,
  11. comparative relations, e.g. moon face,
  12. qualitative relations, e.g. winter apples.


  In the process of communication words and word-groups can be shortened.
The causes of shortening can be linguistic and extra-linguistic. By extra-
linguistic causes changes in the life of people are meant. In Modern
English many new abbreviations, acronyms , initials, blends are formed
because the tempo of life is increasing and it becomes necessary to give
more and more information in the shortest possible time.
  There are also linguistic causes of abbreviating words and word-groups,
such as the demand of rhythm, which is satisfied in English by monosyllabic
words. When borrowings from other languages are assimilated in English they
are shortened. Here we have modification of form on the basis of analogy,
e.g. the Latin borrowing «fanaticus» is shortened to «fan» on the analogy
with native words: man, pan, tan etc.
  There are two main types of shortenings : graphical and lexical.

                           Graphical abbreviations

  Graphical abbreviations are the result of shortening of words and word-
groups only in written speech while orally the corresponding full forms are
used. They are used for the economy of space and effort in writing.
  The oldest group of graphical abbreviations in English is of Latin
origin. In Russian this type of abbreviation is not typical. In these
abbreviations in the spelling Latin words are shortened, while orally the
corresponding English  equivalents are pronounced in the full form,e.g. for
example (Latin exampli gratia), a.m. - in the morning (ante meridiem), No -
number (numero), p.a. - a year (per annum), d - penny (dinarius), lb -
pound (libra), i. e. - that is (id est) etc.
  Some graphical abbreviations of Latin origin have different English
equivalents in different contexts, e.g. p.m. can be pronounced «in the
afternoon» (post meridiem) and «after death» (post mortem).
  There are also graphical abbreviations of native origin, where in the
spelling we have abbreviations of words and word-groups of the
corresponding English equivalents in the full form. We have several
semantic groups of them :
  a) days of the week, e.g. Mon - Monday, Tue - Tuesday etc
  b) names of months, e.g. Apr - April, Aug - August etc.
  c) names of counties in UK, e.g. Yorks - Yorkshire, Berks -Berkshire etc
  d) names of states in USA, e.g. Ala - Alabama, Alas - Alaska etc.
  e) names of address, e.g. Mr., Mrs., Ms., Dr. etc.
  f) military ranks, e.g. capt. -captain, col. - colonel, sgt - sergeant
  g) scientific degrees, e.g. B.A. - Bachelor of Arts, D.M. - Doctor of
Medicine . ( Sometimes in scientific degrees we have abbreviations of Latin
origin, e.g., M.B. - Medicinae Baccalaurus).
  h) units of time, length, weight, e.g. f. / ft -foot/feet, sec. - second,
in. -inch, mg. - milligram etc.
  The reading of some graphical abbreviations depends on the context, e.g.
«m» can be read as: male, married, masculine, metre, mile, million, minute,
«l.p.» can be read as long-playing, low pressure.

                            Initial abbreviations
  Initialisms are the bordering case between graphical and lexical
abbreviations. When they appear in the language, as a rule, to denote some
new offices they are closer to graphical abbreviations because orally full
forms are used, e.g. J.V. - joint venture. When they are used for some
duration of time they acquire the shortened form of pronouncing and become
closer to lexical abbreviations, e.g. BBC is as a rule pronounced in the
shortened form.
  In some cases the translation of initialisms is next to impossible
without using special dictionaries. Initialisms are denoted in different
ways. Very often they are expressed in the way they are pronounced in the
language of their origin, e.g. ANZUS (Australia, New Zealand, United
States) is given in Russian as АНЗУС, SALT (Strategic Arms Limitation
Talks) was for a long time used in Russian as СОЛТ, now a translation
variant is used (ОСВ -Договор об ограничении стратегических вооружений).
This type of initialisms borrowed into other languages is preferable, e.g.
UFO - НЛО, CП - JV etc.
   There are three types of initialisms in English:
  a) initialisms with alphabetical reading, such as UK, BUP, CND etc
  b) initialisms which are read as if they are words, e.g. UNESCO, UNO,
NATO etc.
  c) initialisms which coincide with English words in their sound form,
such initialisms are called acronyms, e.g. CLASS (Computor-based Laboratory
for Automated School System).
  Some scientists unite groups b) and c) into one group which they call
  Some initialisms can form new words in which they act as root morphemes
by different ways of wordbuilding:
  a) affixation, e.g. AWALism, ex-rafer, ex- POW, to waafize,  AIDSophobia
  b) conversion, e.g. to raff, to fly IFR (Instrument Flight Rules),
  c) composition, e.g. STOLport, USAFman etc.
  d) there are also compound-shortened words where the first component is
an initial abbreviation with the alphabetical reading and the second one is
a complete word, e.g. A-bomb, U-pronunciation, V -day etc. In some cases
the first component is a complete word and the second component is an
initial abbreviation with the alphabetical pronunciation, e.g. Three -Ds
(Three dimensions) - стереофильм.

            Abbreviations of words
  Abbreviation of words consists in clipping a part of a word. As a result
we get a new lexical unit where either the lexical meaning or the style is
different form the full form of the word. In such cases as »fantasy» and
«fancy», «fence» and «defence» we have different lexical meanings. In such
cases as «laboratory» and «lab», we have different styles.

  Abbreviation does not change the part-of-speech meaning, as we have it in
the case of conversion or affixation, it produces words belonging to the
same part of speech as the primary word, e.g. prof is a noun and professor
is also a noun. Mostly nouns undergo abbreviation, but we can also meet
abbreviation of verbs, such as to rev from to revolve, to tab from to
tabulate etc. But mostly abbreviated forms of verbs are formed by means of
conversion from abbreviated nouns, e.g. to taxi, to vac etc. Adjectives can
be abbreviated but they are mostly used in school slang and are combined
with suffixation, e.g. comfy, dilly, mizzy etc. As a rule pronouns,
numerals, interjections. conjunctions are not abbreviated. The exceptions
are: fif (fifteen), teen-ager, in one’s teens (apheresis from numerals from
13 to 19).
  Lexical abbreviations are classified according to the part of the word
which is clipped. Mostly the end of the word is clipped, because the
beginning of the word in most cases is the root and expresses the lexical
meaning of the word. This type of abbreviation is called apocope. Here we
can mention a group of words ending in «o», such as disco (dicotheque),
expo (exposition), intro (introduction) and many others. On the analogy
with these words there developed in Modern English a number of words where
«o» is added as a kind of a suffix to the shortened form of the word, e.g.
combo (combination) - небольшой эстрадный ансамбль, Afro (African)
-прическа под африканца etc. In other cases the beginning of the word is
clipped. In such cases we have apheresis , e.g. chute (parachute), varsity
(university), copter (helicopter) , thuse (enthuse) etc. Sometimes the
middle of the word is clipped, e.g. mart (market), fanzine (fan magazine)
maths (mathematics). Such abbreviations are called syncope. Sometimes we
have a combination of apocope with apheresis,when the beginning and the end
of the word are clipped, e.g. tec (detective), van (avanguard) etc.
  Sometimes shortening influences the spelling of the word, e.g. «c» can be
substituted by «k» before «e» to preserve pronunciation, e.g. mike
(microphone), Coke (coca-cola) etc. The same rule is observed in the
following cases: fax( facsimile), teck (technical college), trank
(tranquilizer) etc. The final consonants in the shortened forms are
substituded by letters characteristic of native English words.

  Sound interchange is the way of word-building when some sounds are
changed to form a new word. It is non-productive in Modern English, it was
productive in Old English and can be met in other Indo-European languages.
  The causes of sound interchange can be different. It can be the result of
Ancient Ablaut which cannot be explained by the phonetic laws during the
period of the language development known to scientists., e.g. to strike -
stroke, to sing - song etc. It can be also the result of Ancient Umlaut or
vowel mutation which is the result of palatalizing the root vowel because
of the front vowel in the syllable coming after the root ( regressive
assimilation), e.g. hot - to heat (hotian), blood - to bleed (blodian) etc.
  In many cases we have vowel and consonant interchange. In nouns we have
voiceless consonants and in verbs we have corresponding voiced consonants
because in Old English these consonants in nouns were at the end of the
word and in verbs in the intervocal position, e.g. bath - to bathe, life -
to live, breath - to breathe etc.
                STRESS INTERCHANGE
  Stress interchange can be mostly met in verbs and nouns of Romanic origin
: nouns have the stress on the first syllable and verbs on the last
syllable, e.g. `accent - to ac`cent. This phenomenon is explained in the
following way: French verbs and nouns had different structure when they
were borrowed into English, verbs had one syllable more than the
corresponding nouns. When these borrowings were assimilated in English the
stress in them was shifted to the previous syllable (the second from the
end) . Later on the last unstressed syllable in verbs borrowed from French
was dropped (the same as in native verbs) and after that the stress in
verbs was on the last syllable while in nouns it was on the first syllable.
As a result of it we have such pairs in English as : to af`fix -`affix, to
con`flict- `conflict, to ex`port -`export, to ex`tract - `extract etc. As a
result of stress interchange we have also vowel interchange in such words
because vowels are pronounced differently in stressed and unstressed



               SOUND IMITATION
  It is the way of word-building when a word is formed by imitating
different sounds. There are some semantic groups of words formed by means
of sound imitation
  a) sounds produced by human beings, such as : to whisper, to giggle, to
mumble, to sneeze, to whistle etc.
  b) sounds produced by animals, birds, insects, such as : to hiss, to
buzz, to bark, to moo, to twitter etc.
  c) sounds produced by nature and objects, such as : to splash, to rustle,
to clatter, to bubble, to ding-dong, to tinkle etc.
  The corresponding nouns are formed by means of conversion, e.g. clang (of
a bell), chatter (of children) etc.

  Blends are words formed from a word-group or two synonyms. In blends two
ways of word-building are combined : abbreviation and composition. To form
a blend we clip the end of the first component (apocope) and the beginning
of the second component (apheresis) . As a result we have a compound-
shortened word. One of the first blends in English was the word «smog» from
two synonyms : smoke and fog which means smoke mixed with fog. From the
first component the beginning is taken, from the second one the end, «o» is
common for both of them.


  Blends formed from two synonyms are: slanguange, to hustle, gasohol etc.
Mostly blends are formed from a word-group, such as : acromania (acronym
mania), cinemadict (cinema adict), chunnel (channel, canal), dramedy (drama
comedy), detectifiction (detective fiction), faction (fact fiction)
(fiction based on real facts), informecial (information commercial) ,
Medicare ( medical care) , magalog ( magazine catalogue) slimnastics
(slimming gymnastics), sociolite (social elite), slanguist ( slang
linguist) etc.

                  BACK FORMATION
  It is the way of word-building when a word is formed by dropping the
final morpheme to form a new word. It is opposite to suffixation, that is
why it is called back formation. At first it appeared in the languauge as a
result of misunderstanding the structure of a borrowed word . Prof.
Yartseva explains this mistake by the influence of the whole system of the
language on separate words. E.g. it is typical of English to form nouns
denoting the agent of the action by adding the suffix -er to a verb stem
(speak- speaker). So when the French word «beggar» was borrowed into
English the final syllable «ar» was pronounced in the same way as the
English -er and Englishmen formed the verb «to beg» by dropping the end of
the noun. Other examples of back formation are : to accreditate (from
accreditation), to bach (from bachelor), to collocate (from collocation),
to enthuse (from enthusiasm), to compute (from computer), to emote (from
emotion) to reminisce ( from reminiscence) , to televise (from television)
   As we can notice in cases of back formation the part-of-speech meaning
of the primary word is changed, verbs are formed from nouns.

                 SEMANTIC CHANGES

  The meaning of a word can change in the course of time. Changes of
lexical meanings can be proved by comparing contexts of different times.
Transfer of the meaning is called lexico-semantic word-building. In such
cases the outer aspect of a word does not change.
  The causes of semantic changes can be extra-linguistic and linguistic,
e.g. the change of the lexical meaning of the noun «pen» was due to extra-
linguistic causes. Primarily « pen» comes back to the Latin word «penna» (a
feather of a bird). As people wrote with goose pens the name was
transferred to steel pens which were later on used for writing. Still later
any instrument for writing was called « a pen».
  On the other hand causes can be linguistic, e.g. the conflict of synonyms
when a perfect synonym of a native word is borrowed from some other
language one of them may specialize in its meaning, e.g. the noun «tide» in
Old English was polisemantic and denoted «time», «season», «hour». When the
French words «time», «season», «hour» were borrowed into English they
ousted the word «tide» in these meanings. It was specialized and now means
«regular rise and fall of the sea caused by attraction of the moon». The
meaning of a word can also change due to ellipsis, e.g. the word-group «a
train of carriages» had the meaning of «a row of carriages», later on «of
carriages» was dropped and the noun «train» changed its meaning, it is used
now in the function and with the meaning of the whole word-group.
  Semantic changes have been classified by different scientists. The most
complete classification was suggested by a German scientist Herman Paul in
his work «Prinzipien des Sprachgeschichte». It is based on the logical
principle. He distiguishes two main ways where the semantic change is
gradual ( specialization and generalization), two momentary conscious
semantic changes (metaphor and metonymy) and also secondary ways: gradual
(elevation and degradation), momentary (hyperbole and litote).


  It is a gradual process when a word passes from a general sphere to some
special sphere of communication, e.g. «case» has a general meaning
«circumstances in which a person or a thing is». It is specialized in its
meaning when used in law (a law suit), in grammar (a form in the paradigm
of a noun), in medicine (a patient, an illness). The difference between
these meanings is revealed in the context.
  The meaning of a word can specialize when it remains in the general
usage. It happens in the case of the conflict between two absolute synonyms
when one of them must specialize in its meaning to remain in the language,
e.g. the native word «meat» had the meaning «food», this meaning is
preserved in the compound «sweetmeats». The meaning «edible flesh» was
formed when the word «food», its absolute synonym, won in the conflict of
absolute synonyms (both words are native). The English verb «starve» was
specialized in its meaning after the Scandinavian verb «die» was borrowed
into English. «Die» became the general verb with this meaning because in
English there were the noun «death» and the adjective «dead». «Starve» got
the meaning «to die of hunger» .
  The third way of specialization is the formation of Proper names from
common nouns, it is often used in toponimics, e.g. the City - the business
part of London, Oxford - university town in England, the Tower -originally
a fortress and palace, later -a prison, now - a museum.
  The fourth way of specialization is ellipsis. In such cases primaraly we
have a word-group of the type «attribute + noun», which is used constantly
in a definite situation. Due to it the attribute can be dropped and the
noun can get the meaning of the whole word-group, e.g. «room» originally
meant «space», this meaning is retained in the adjective «roomy» and word
combinations: «no room for», «to take room», «to take no room». The meaning
of the word «room « was specialized because it was often used in the
combinations: «dining room», «sleeping room» which meant «space for dining»
, «space for sleeping».


  It is a process contrary to specializaton, in such cases the meaning of a
word becomes more general in the course of time.
  The transfer from a concrete meaning to an abstract one is most frequent,
e.g. «ready» (a derivative from the verb «ridan» - «ride») meant «prepared
for a ride», now its meaning is «prepared for anything». «Journey» was
borrowed from French with the meaning «one day trip», now it means «a trip
of any duration».
  All auxiliary verbs are cases of generalization of their lexical meaning
because they developed a grammatical meaning : «have», «be», «do», «shall»
, «will» when used as auxiliary verbs are devoid of their lexical meaning
which they have when used as notional verbs or modal verbs, e.g. cf. «I
have several books by this writer» and «I have read some books by this
author». In the first sentence the verb «have» has the meaning «possess»,
in the second sentence it has no lexical meaning, its grammatical meaning
is to form Present Perfect.


   It is a transfer of the meaning on the basis of comparison. Herman Paul
points out that metaphor can be based on different types of similarity:
  a) similarity of shape, e.g. head (of a cabbage), bottleneck, teeth (of a
saw, a comb);
  b) similarity of position, e.g. foot (of a page, of a mountain), head (of
a procession);
  c) similarity of function, behaviour e.g. a whip (an official in the
British Parliament whose duty is to see that members were present at the
  d) similarity of colour, e.g. orange, hazel, chestnut etc.
  In some cases we have a complex similarity, e.g. the leg of a table has a
similarity to a human leg in its shape, position and function.
  Many metaphors are based on parts of a human body, e.g. an eye of a
needle, arms and mouth of a river, head of an army.
  A special type of metaphor is when Proper names become common nouns, e.g.
philistine - a mercenary person, vandals - destructive people, a Don Juan -
a lover of many women etc.


  It is a transfer of the meaning on the basis of contiguity. There are
different types of metonymy:
  a) the material of which an object is made may become the name of the
object , e.g. a glass, boards, iron etc;
  b) the name of the place may become the name of the people or of an
object placed there, e.g. the House - members of Parliament, Fleet Street -
bourgeois press, the White House - the Administration of the USA etc;
  c) names of musical instruments may become names of musicians, e.g. the
violin, the saxophone;
  d) the name of some person may becom a common noun, e.g. «boycott» was
originally the name of an Irish family who were so much disliked by their
neighbours that they did not mix with them, «sandwich» was named after Lord
Sandwich who was a gambler. He did not want to interrupt his game and had
his food brought to him while he was playing cards between two slices of
bread not to soil his fingers.
  e) names of inventors very often become terms to denote things they
invented, e.g. «watt» , «om», «rentgen» etc
  f) some geographical names can also become common nouns through metonymy,
e.g. holland (linen fabrics), Brussels (a special kind of carpets) , china
(porcelain) , astrachan ( a sheep fur) etc.


  It is a transfer of the meaning when it becomes better in the course of
time, e.g. «knight» originally meant «a boy», then «a young servant», then
«a military servant», then «a noble man». Now it is a title of nobility
given to outstanding people; «marshal» originally meant «a horse man» now
it is the highest military rank etc.


  It is a transfer of the meaning when it becomes worse in the course of
time. It is usually connected with nouns denoting common people, e.g.
«villain» originally meant «working on a villa» now it means «a scoundrel».


  It is a transfer of the meaning when the speaker uses exaggeration,
  e.g. «to hate»(doing something), (not to see somebody) «for ages».

  Hyperbole is often used to form phraseological units, e.g. «to make a
mountain out of a molehill», «to split hairs» etc.


   It is a transfer of the meaning when the speaker expresses affirmative

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