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LING 1000 Study Guide - Principle Of Compositionality

Course Code
LING 1000
Tom Wilson

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Semantic features: can show the difference between antonyms
Father (+male, +human, +parent); Mother (-male, +human, +parent)
Count nouns: nouns that can be quantified - can be expressed by a (single) or many
(more than one so therefore: +count)
Mass nouns: nouns that can be expressed by much but not by a or many (so there-
fore: -count)
There are no two perfect synonyms (the two words will never have the EXACT same
Polysemous words are partial synonyms; they can sometimes mean the same thing;
i.e. Mature and ripe: mean the same thing when referring to fruit, but not to anything
else or deep and profound: they both refer to a thought, but only deep refers to water
The principal of compositionality: the meaning of a phrase or sentence depends on
both the meaning of its words and how those words are combined structurally
Idioms are frozen in meaning: you can’t move the themes, or the sentence would not
make sense anymore
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