Chirchik state pedagogical institute of tashkent region the faculty of history and languages the department of foreign languages

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What is semantic structure

The branch of linguistics concerned with the meaning of words and word equivalents is called semasiology. The name comes from the Greek sēmasiā ‘signification’ (from sēma sign’ sēmantikos ‘significant’ and logos ‘learning’).

In the present book we shall not deal with every kind of linguistic meaning. Attention will be concentrated on lexical meaning and semasiology will be treated as a branch of lexicology.

This does not mean, of course, that no attention will be paid to grammatical meaning; on the contrary, grammatical meaning must be considered because it bears a specific influence upon lexical meaning. In most present-day methods of lexicological analysis words are studied by placing them, or rather considering them in larger units of context; a word is defined by its functioning within a phrase or a sentence. This means that the problem of autonomy of lexicology versus syntax is now being raised and solved by special study. This functional approach is attempted in contextual analysis, semantic syntax and some other branches of linguistics.1

The influence of grammar on lexical meaning is manifold and will be further discussed at some length later. At this stage it will suffice to point out that a certain basic component of the word meaning is described when one identifies the word morphologically, i.e. states to what grammatical word class it belongs.

If treated diachronically, semasiology studies the change in meaning which words undergo. Descriptive synchronic approach demands a study not of individual words but of semantic structures typical of the language studied, and of its general semantic system. The main objects of semasiological study treated in this book are as follows: semantic development of words, its causes and classification, relevant distinctive features and types of lexical meaning,

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