c stirling bartholomew cc.constantine at
Sun Aug 26 03:07:01 EDT 2001

on 8/25/01 11:39 PM, Iver Larsen wrote:

> It is often difficult to distinguish between what is implied by the word
> itself and what is implied from the context. Most words in themselves are
> open to different flavors, and it is the context that can flavor it towards
> one direction or another. That is why dictionary definitions are helpful as
> guidelines, but it is really the context that defines the particular sense
> being in focus.


It seems that there is something like dog chasing its own tail in the quoted
paragraph above. We determine the semantic properties of a word by observing
how it is used in various contexts. So how is it that we can distinguish
between what is "implied by the word itself" and what is supplied by the

Keep in mind that I am not an SIL old grad and I do not use "prototype
theory" as a semantic model.

It sounds to me like you are saying that a given word has one or more
semantic values which are properly basic to the word and then over and above
that it can receive added coloring from its context. I have a problem with
that. Since I see no way to distinguish between added coloring and the other
semantic values. They are all come from observing the word as it is used in
its context.


Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

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