By Alan Cruse

This easy-to-use consultant illuminates key strategies and phrases in semantics and pragmatics and the research of that means because it is conveyed via language.

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This word can be used to refer to certain things but not others. The set of things the word properly applies to is known as its ‘extension’, in this case, the set of all dogs (the term ‘denotation’ is sometimes restricted to this). However, the word also denotes the property or properties something has to have in order to count as a dog (we can think of this as the concept dog); this is called the ‘intension’ of the word (also sometimes called connotation). ) 46 A GLOSSARY OF SEMANTICS AND PRAGMATICS deontic modality see under modality de re vs de dicto interpretations An utterance like The prize cheque will be presented to the winner by the president of the company has two interpretations corresponding to two readings of the phrase the president of the company.

Context An essential factor in the interpretation of utterances and expressions. The most important aspects of context are: (1) preceding and following utterances and/or expressions (‘co-text’), (2) the immediate physical situation, (3) the wider situation, including social and power relations, and (4) knowledge presumed shared between speaker and hearer. contextual modulation This refers to different interpretations of a word (in different contexts) which do not exhibit any signs of autonomy, and thus cannot be considered to represent different senses, different facets, or different microsenses.

Asked to imagine a giraffe whose neck and legs are shortened, and which is treated so that it develops black and white stripes on its back, people are resistant to the notion that the animal has changed into a zebra. On the other hand, they are willing to accept that a hammer whose metal head is filed down to the form of a chisel has in fact been turned into a chisel. establishment see entrenchment etymology The study of the historical origins of words and changes in their meaning and use after their introduction into a language.

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