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Evolving Nature of the English Language

Studies in Theoretical and Applied Linguistics


Edited By Robert Kiełtyka and Agnieszka Uberman

This volume presents a collection of interdisciplinary papers pertaining to the most thought-provoking problems in the areas of both theoretical and applied linguistics. The contributors focus on contemporary developments in morphological, semantic and pragmatic theorizing. The contributions are also devoted to various aspects of the methodology of teaching English as well as some intricacies of translation.

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The Semantics of Dog Revisited: In Search of Phraseologically Embedded Spectral Zoometaphors (Grzegorz A. Kleparski)


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Grzegorz A. Kleparski

The Semantics of Dog Revisited: In Search of Phraseologically Embedded Spectral Zoometaphors

Abstract: In current semantic research the analyses of animal metaphor have traditionally focused on synchronic and diachronic transfers of animal-specific words with the aim of accounting for the nature of their metaphorical uses. The analysis of polysemic strings attached historically to such lexical items as cat, lion, bat or dog accounts for the registered zoometaphoric lexically substantiated senses, such as those of dog used currently in the human-specific senses “police informer” and “unattractive female”. The radical postulate made here is that, in order to arrive at a more complete picture, the analysis of metaphorical potential of animal-specific lexicon should be extended to bringing to light and analyzing zoometaphoric spectral senses as they emerge from the quantum of phraseological (idiomatic and proverbial) contexts in which the lexical items appear, such as go to the dogs, where the emergent spectral sense of dog is (BEING A DOG MEANS ). The spectral sense of dog, the core of which is the element (INFERIORITY), crops up in the readings of many other dog-based phraseological formations, not only in the polysemic string of dog’s substantiated lexical senses.

Keywords: animal metaphor, metaphorical potential, substantiated senses, spectral senses, phraseological formations


The aim set to this paper is not very far from that of the recent paper authored by Sakalasaite (2010), who carries out...

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