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Lecture 7

Classical Studies 2800A/B Lecture Notes - Lecture 7: Snob


Department
Classical Studies
Course Code
CS 2800A/B
Professor
David Lamari
Lecture
7

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Liberman pg1-44
CHAPTER ONE: THE OBJECT OF ETYMOLOGY
What is the object of etymology?
o
What is the state of English etymology?
o There is no good first dictionary, so we have been guessing about what english words mean
based on the parts of each word
o So quite bad
CHAPTER TWO: THE THING AND THE SIGN
Plato’s Cratylus: do ords reflect properties of things, or are they the result of conention?
o Do the meaning of the word reflect the thing it is describing?
Most of the time, absolutely
Especially compound words; the words we are learning about
o Everything assigned is conventional
Not natural
o Daisy
Day's eye; the flower looks like the sun
o Butterfly
o Two philosophers argues the two sides of the question
One thinks all words reflect its thing
One thinks it's all conventional/arbitrary
Because there are multiple words of the same thing in different languages
Etymological guesswork
o Female>femur
People guessed that female came from femur meaning thought because they think
about sex all the time
Wrong
o Shave>sheep
o White>wheat
o Grow>green
CHAPTER THREE: SOUND IMITATIVE WORDS
Onomatopoeia: cuckoo, owl, cow
o The sound of the word directly related to the thing
Extended onomatopoeia
o Using onomatopoeia words and make words associated with them
o Growl, creak, croak > gruesome, grudge, grumble, grief, grin, greet
Grin: originally it was used to describes what dogs do, then when people do it, they
are also grinning
o Grind>grit, grits, great (meaning bigger grits, then meant anything big)
Tap & pat > pad, ped-, pod-
Gn-> gnaw, knuckle
Sn-> sneak, snake, snide, snarky, snob, snooty
o The sound sounds nasty so the words with it has the nasty connotation
-ump> jump, bump, thump, dump
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