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I.Answer these questions.

1) What is “semaseology”?

2) Why is the term “semantics” ambiguous?

3) Why is meaning one of the most controversial terms in linguistics?

4) How does Prof. Smirnitsky define meaning?

5) What are the main approaches to the study of meaning? What are their advantages and disadvantages?

6) What is “the semiotic triangle”? What does it show?


II.What does the diagram below prove? Explain your answer.










III.True or false? Correct the wrong statements.

1) Meaning is the component of the word through which a concept is communicated.

2) Meanings are subjective as they exist in the minds of individuals.

3) Meaning enables the word to name real-world objects.

4) Meaning is an inherent property of the word and thus it is a linguistic category.

5) Meaning is a certain kind of information or knowledge of real-world objects and phenomena.

6) Meaning enables words to be used in communication.

7) Word meaning is closely connected but not identical with either the sound-form or the referent.


IV.Could you define these terms?

denotation, connotation, emotive charge, evaluation, stylistic reference, emotive implications.


V.Identify the components of the meaning of the following words. In which word is the content primarily evaluative or primarily referential?

dog, fascist, typewriter; wife-spouse-consort; child-brat-urchin;

stubborn-mulish; horse-steed


VI.There are a lot of words whose content is largely emotive. Emotion or evaluation can be a major part of the word’s meaning, if not the whole of it,

e.g. marvellous, monstrous, glorious.

Could you give 3 more examples of “emotive language”?

Use the words in context,

e.g. You look fabulous! Horrendous prices!

Why are such words called “loaded language”?


VII.Can you match the colours with their connotations in English? Are any of these the same in Russian?

1. blue purity

2. green evil

3. yellow miserable

4. red inexperienced

5. white danger

6. black cowardly


VIII.What personal association do the words below have for you? What are their connotations for English speakers in general?

shark, scar, diamond.

IX.What is the stylistic reference of the words in italics?

1) Subsequently, three people were arrested.

2) Give me that thingy there, yea, that bottle opener.

3) I saw him conversing with a woman in a red car.

How can you make these sentences more formal/informal?


X.Do you agree with the following statement? Why or why not?

"The relationship between the form of the word and its meaning is conventional and arbitrary".


XI.Are these words motivated? If they are, state the type of motivation and its degree,

ding-dong, dragonfly, handbag, to spam, gooseberry, rat-a-tat-tat, antiglobalism, spanner, flame “an angry email”, bluebottle, porter, jungle “a garden or other places with a lot of plants which are not under control”, phonaethesia.


XII.Find the odd-one-out. Explain your decision.

1) butterfly, buttercup, butterknife, butter-fingers;

2) buzz, swish, crunch, splash, bang, slide;

3) wrapper, feeder, ginger, sleeper, printer;

4) a sweet smile, a sweet face, a sweet apple, a sweet voice.


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