Semantic Features of the English Language

Semantic Features of the English Language

Many of the Indo-European languages, especially the languages ​​of the old continent, have many semantic similarities. This is certainly due to the common ancestor of these languages, dating back to prehistory, along with the early Sanskrit.

With few exceptions, the words used to designate things, states, beings or ideas are primitive, simple and easy to reproduce, since they were probably just as short and simple for the first Homo Sapiens Sapiens. We can exemplify the idea of ​​short, ordinary English words by: mother, mom, father, dad, brother, son, daughter, boy, girl, man, woman, baby, friend. Parts of the human body can also be mentioned here: hand, foot, eye, ear, heart, arm, face, nose, mouth, body, head, knee, ankle, thigh, neck, hair, beard, tooth, finger, nail.

One could also mention words that refer to common animals or birds: cat, dog, horse, bull, ox, cow, lamb, donkey, duck, lion, bear, wolf, pig, hen, goat, frog, bird, fish. Simple, usual and monosyllabic or disyllabic words also refer to feelings, elements of nature or traits.

The same thing applies to verbs expressing states and actions of primitive origin: to meet, to come, to go, to eat, to drink, to sleep, to wake, to talk, to walk, to run, to dive, to swim, to die, to do, to make, to work, to give, to be, to have, plus the English modal verbs: must, will, shall.

But why are all these common words so short? Because need always prevails. The first languages ​​spoken by people contained mostly words with combinations of monosyllabic and disyllabic sounds. When the need of more sophisticated words occurred, the monosyllabic and disyllabic ones were not enough anymore, giving birth to longer words.

As in any situation throughout its history, the humankind has shown inventiveness, to say the least, especially in terms of communication. Today, language is constantly changing in any aspect, even academically, due to this permanent need to adapt to the demands of the more and more developed, pluralistic and globalized society.

By | 2018-01-05T09:16:07+00:00 January 5th, 2018|Articles|0 Comments