Stylistic Classification of the English Vocabulary

Table of Content


Theme really. It is no intelligence that any prepositional content – any « thought » – can be verbalized in several different ways. So, « May I offer you are chair? » , Take a place, please, « Sit down » – have the same proposition but differ in the mode of look, which, in its bend, depends upon the situational conditions of the communicating act.

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70 per centum of our life-time is spent in assorted signifiers of communicating activities – unwritten or written, so it is self apparent how of import it is for a philologue to cognize the mechanics of dealingss between the non verbal, extralinguistic denotional kernel of the communicative act and its verbal, lingual presentation. That ’ s why I think to analyze the categorization of the vocabulary is really of import thing for the English instructor and pupils.

The purposes and intents of the work. The work set a undertaking to larn. The distinctive features of stylistic distinction of English vocabulary. To demo the illustrations of different bookmans approaches to the subject.

The practical value. Materials of the work will assist pupils, instructors and peculiar transcribers and translators who work on the interlingual rendition of the masters.

Literature overview. Basic information ’ s of the making work are given from the manuals of great bookmans such as: Stylistics by Galperin I.R, A book of pattern in stylistics by Kukharenko V.A, English Stylistics by Bobohonova L.T. Besides above mentioned manuals I took informations from Internet and World Book Encyclopedia.

The construction of the work. This making work consists of Introduction, chief Part, and Conclusion and at the terminal the list of used literatures.

1. General considerations of stylistic categorization of the English vocabulary

The word-stock of any given linguistic communication can be approximately divided into three uneven groups, differing from each other by the domain of its possible usage.

The biggest division is made up of impersonal words, possessing no stylistic intension and suited for any communicative state of affairs, two smaller 1s are literary and conversational strata severally.

In order to acquire a more or less clear thought of the word-stock of nay linguistic communication, it must be presented as a system, the elements of which are interconnected, interrelated and yet independent. Some linguists, who clearly see the systematic character of linguistic communication as a whole, deny, nevertheless, the possibility of consistently sorting the vocabulary. They say that he word-stock of any linguistic communication is so big and so heterogenous that it is impossible to formalise it and hence present it in any system. The words of a linguistic communication are thought of as a helter-skelter organic structure whether viewed from their beginning and development or from their present province.

Indeed, mintage of new lexical units, the development of significance, the distinction of words harmonizing to their stylistic rating and their domains of use, the correlativity between intending and construct and other jobs connected with vocabulary are so many-sided and varied that it is hard to hold on the systematic character of the word-stock of a linguistic communication, though it coexist with the systems of other level-phonetics, morphology and sentence structure.

To deny the systematic character of the word-stock of a linguistic communication amounts to denying the systematic character of linguistic communication as a whole, words being elements in the general system of linguistic communication.

The word-stock of a linguistic communication may be represented as a definite system in which different facets of words may be singled out as interdependent. A particular subdivision of lingual scientific discipline lexicology has done much to sort vocabulary. A glimpse at the contents of any book on lexicology spiral suffices to determine the lineation of the system of the word-stock of the given linguistic communication.

For our intent, i.e. for lingual stylistics, a particular type of categorization, stylistic categorization, is most of import.

In conformity with the already mentioned division of linguistic communication into literary and conversational, we may stand for the whole of the word-stock of the English linguistic communication as being divided into three chief beds: the literary bed, the impersonal bed and the conversational bed. The literary and the conversational beds contain figure of subgroups each of which has a belongings it portions with all the subgroups within the bed. This common belongings, which unites the different groups of words within the bed, may be called its facet. The facet of the literary bed is its markedly studious character. It is this that makes the bed more or less stable. The facet of the conversational bed of words is its lively spoken character. It is this that makes it unstable, fleeting.

The facet of the impersonal bed is its cosmopolitan character. That means it is unrestricted in its usage. It can be employed in all manners of linguistic communication and in all domains of human activity. It is this that makes the bed the most stable of all.

The literary bed of words consists of groups accepted as legitimate members of the English vocabulary they have no local or dialectal character.

The conversational bed of words as qualified in most English or American lexicons is non infrequently limited to a definite linguistic communication community or confined to a particular vicinity where it circulates.

The literary vocabulary consist of the following groups of words: 1. common literary: 2. footings and learned words: 3. poetic words: 4. antediluvian words ; 5. brutalities and foreign words: 6. literary mintages including nonce-words.

The conversational vocabulary falls into the undermentioned groups: 1. common conversational words: 2. slang: 3. slangs: 4. professional words: 5. dialectal words: 6. vulgar words: 7. conversational mintages.

2. Main portion

2.1 Impersonal, common literary andСommon conversational vocabulary

Impersonal words, which form the majority of the English vocabulary, are used in both literary and conversational linguistic communication. Impersonal words are the chief beginning of synonymity and lexical ambiguity. It is the impersonal stock of words that is so fecund in the production of new significances.

The wealth of the impersonal stratum of words is frequently overlooked. This is due to their invisible character. But their module for presuming new significances and bring forthing new stylistic discrepancies is frequently rather astonishing. This productive power of the impersonal words in English linguistic communication is multiplied by the very nature of the linguistic communication itself. It has been estimated that most impersonal English words are of monosyllabic character, as, in the procedure of development from Old English to Modern English, most of the parts of address lost their distinguish postfixs. This phenomenon has led to the development of transition as the most productive agencies of word-building. Word combination is non so productive as transition or word displacement in the portion of address in the first instance and by the add-on of an affix in the 2nd. Unlike all other groups, the impersonal group of words can non be considered as holding a particular stylistic colouring.

Common literary words are chiefly used in composing and in polished address. One can ever state a literary word from a conversational word. The ground fro this lies in certain nonsubjective characteristics of the literary bed of words. What these nonsubjective characteristics are, is hard to state because every bit yet no nonsubjective standards have been worked out. But one of the undoubtedly is that literary units stand in resistance to conversational units. This is particularly evident when braces of equivalent word, literary and conversational, can be formed which stand in contrasting relation.

The undermentioned equivalent word illustrate the dealingss that exist between the impersonal, literary and conversational words in the English linguistic communication.

Colloquial Impersonal Literary
Kid Child Baby
Daddy Father Parent
Chap Chap Associate
Get out Travel away Retire
Travel on Continue Continue
Adolescent Boy ( miss ) Youth ( maiden )
Flapper Young miss Maiden
Go in front Get down
Get traveling Start Commence

It goes without stating that these equivalent words are non merely stylistic but ideographic as a well, i.e. there is a definite, though little, semantic difference between the words. But this is about ever the instance with equivalent word. There are really few absolute equivalent word in English merely as there are in any linguistic communication. The chief differentiation between equivalent word remains stylistic. But stylistic difference may be of assorted sorts: it may lie in the emotional tenseness connoted in a word, or in the domain of application, or in the grade of the quality denoted. Colloquial words are ever more emotionally colored that literary 1s. The impersonal stratum of words, as heated term itself implies, has no grade of emotiveness, nor have they any differentiations in the domain of use.

Both literary and conversational words have their upper and lower scopes. The lower scope of literary words approaches the impersonal bed and has a markedly obvious inclination to go through into that bed. The same may be said of the upper scope of the conversational bed: it can really easy base on balls into the impersonal bed. The lines of limit between common colloquial and impersonal, on the one manus, and common literary and impersonal, on the other, are blurred. It is here that the procedure of interpenetration of the stylistic strata becomes most evident.

Still the extremes remain counter and therefore are frequently used to convey about a hit of manners of address for particular stylistic intents. The difference in the stylistic facet of words may colourise the whole of an vocalization.

In this illustration from « Fanny ’ s First Play » , the difference between the common literary and common conversational vocabulary is clearly seen.

« Dora: Oh, I ’ ve allow it out. Have I? ( contemplating Juggins approvingly as he places a chair for her between the tabular array and the sideboard ) . But he ’ s the right kind: I can see that ( button holing him ) . You won ’ t allow it out downstairs, old adult male, will you?

Juggins: The household can trust on my absolute discretion » .

The words in Jugginses reply are on the boundary line – line between common literary and impersonal, whereas the words and looks used by Dora are clearly common colloquial, non surrounding on impersonal.

The illustration from « David Copperfield » ( Dickens ) illustrates the usage of literary English words which do non surround on impersonal:

« My beloved Copperfield, » said Mr. Micawber, « this is epicurean. This is a manner of life which reminds me of a period when I was myself in a province of celibacy, and Mrs. Micawber had non yet been solicited to betroth her religion at the Hymeneal communion table » .

« He means, solicited by him, Mr. Copperfield, » said Mrs. Micawber, archly. « He can non reply for others » .

« My beloved, » returned Mr. Micawber with sudden earnestness, « I have no desire to reply for others. I am excessively good cognizant that when, in the cryptic edicts of Fate, you were reserved for me, it is possible you may hold been reserved for one destined, after protracted battle, at length to fall a victim to monetary engagements of a complicated nature. I understand your allusion, my love, I regret it, but I can bear it. »

« Micawber! » exclaimed Mrs. Micawber, in cryings. « Have I deserved this! I, who ne’er have deserted you ; who ne’er will abandon you, Micawber! »

« My love, » said Mr. Micawber, much affected, « you will forgive, and our old and tested friend Copperfield will, I am certain, forgive the fleeting laceration of a hurt spirit, made sensitive by a recent hit with the Minion of Power-in other words, with a ribald Turncock attached to the water company – and will feel for, non reprobate, its surpluss » .

There is a certain analogy between the mutuality of common literary words and impersonal 1s, on the one manus, and common conversational words and impersonal 1s, on the other. Both sets can be viewed as being in invariant variant dealingss.

The impersonal vocabulary may be viewed as the invariant of the standard English vocabulary. The stock of words organizing the impersonal stratum should in this instance be regarded as an abstraction. The words of this stratum are by and large deprived of any concrete associations and refer to the construct more or less straight. Synonyms of impersonal words, both conversational and literary, presume a far greater grade of concreteness. They by and large present the same impressions non abstractly but as a more or less concrete image, that is, in a signifier perceptible by the senses. This perceptibility by the senses causes subjective ratings of the impression in inquiry, or a mental image of the construct. Sometimes an impact of a definite sort on het reader or listener is the purpose puting behind the pick of a colloquial or a literary word instead than a impersonal one.

In the diagram, common conversational vocabulary is represented as overlapping into the standard English vocabulary and is hence to be considered portion of it. It borders both on the impersonal vocabulary and on the particular conversational vocabulary which, as we shall see subsequently, falls out of standard English wholly. Merely as common literary words lack homogeneousness so do common colloquial words and set looks. Some of the lexical points belonging to this stratum are close to the non-standard conversational groups such as jargonisms, professionalisms, etc. There are on the boundary line line between the common conversational vocabulary and the particular conversational or non-standard vocabulary. Other words approach the impersonal majority of the English vocabulary.

Therefore, the words adolescent ( a immature miss or immature adult male ) and hippy ( hippy ) ( a immature individual who leads an disordered and unconventional life ) are conversational words go throughing into the impersonal vocabulary. They are bit by bit losing their non-standard character and going widely recognized. However, they have non lost their conversational association and therefore still remain in the conversational stratum of the English vocabulary. So besides are the undermentioned words and looks:take( in as I take it = as I understand ) ;to travel for( to be attracted by, like really much, as in « You think she still goes for the cat? » ) ;cat( immature adult male ) ;to be gone on( to be frantically in love with ) ;pro( professional, e.g. a professional pugilist, tennis – participant, etc. )

The spoken linguistic communication abounds in set looks which are conversational in character, e.g.all kinds of things, merely a spot, how is life handling you? , indifferent, what clip do you do it? To hob-nob (to be really friendly with, to imbibe together) , so much the better, to be ill and tired of, to be up to something.

The stylistic map of the different strata of the English vocabulary depends non so much on the interior qualities of each of the groups, as on their interaction when they are opposed to one another. However, the qualities themselves are non unaffected by the map of the words, in every bit much as these qualities have been acquired in certain environments. It is interesting to observe that anything written assumes a greater grade of significance than what is merely spoken. If the spoken takes the topographic point of he written or frailty versa, it means that we are faced with a stylistic device.

Certain set looks have been coined within literary English and their usage in ordinary address will necessarily do the vocalization sound studious. In other words, it will go literary. The following are illustrations of set looks which can be considered literary: in conformity with, with respect to, by virtuousness of, to talk at great length, to impart aid, to pull a lesson, duty remainder.

2.2 Particular literary vocabulary

2.2.1 Footings

« All scientists are linguists to some extent. They are responsible for inventing a consistent nomenclature, a skeleton linguistic communication to speak about their capable affair. Philologists and philosophers of address are in the curious place degree Fahrenheit holding to germinate a particular linguistic communication to speak about linguistic communication itself. »

This citation makes clear one of the indispensable features of a term viz its extremely conventional character. A term is by and large really easy coined and easy accepted: and new mintages as replace out-of-date 1s.

This sensitiveness to change is chiefly due to the necessity of reflecting in linguistic communication the cognitive procedure maintained by bookmans analysing different constructs and phenomena. One of the most characteristic characteristics of a term is its direct relevancy to the system or set of footings used in a peculiar scientific discipline, subject or art, i.e. to its terminology.

When a term is used our head instantly associates it with a certain terminology. A term is straight connected with the construct it denotes. A term, unlike other words, directs the head to the indispensable quality of the things, phenomenon or action as seen by the scientist in the visible radiation of his ain conceptualisation

« A word is organically one with its significance ; likewise a term is one with a construct. Conceptualization leaves, as it were, linguistic communication behind although the words remain as ( scientific or philosophical ) footings linguistically the difference is of import in that footings are much more easy substitutable by other footings than are words by other words ; it is easier to replace, state the term phonemics by phonologies ( provided I make it clear what is meant ) [ 1 ], than to replace mundane words like tabular array and chair by other word

Footings are largely and preponderantly used in particular plants covering with the states of some subdivision of scientific discipline. There sore it may be said that they belong to the manner. They may every bit good look in newspaper manner, inpublicistic and practically in all other bing manners of linguistic communication. But their map in this instance changes. They do non ever carry through their basic map that of bearing exact mention to a given construct. When used in the belles – letters manner, for case, a term may get a stylistic map and accordingly go a ( sporadical ) SD. This happens when a term is used Ns such a manner that two significances are materialized at the same time.

The map of footings, if encountered in other manners, is either to bespeak the proficient distinctive features of the topic dealt with, or to do some mention to the business of a character whose linguistic communication would of course incorporate particular words and looks.

In this connexion it is interesting to analyse the stylistic consequence of he medical nomenclature used by A.J. Cromin in his novel « The Citadel » [ 2 ]. The frequent usage of medical footings in the novel is explained by its capable affair the life of a doctor and finds it natural to utilize medical nomenclature.

The stacking up of hard and particular footings hinders the readers apprehension of the text if he is non a specializer even when the author strives to explicate them. More over, such an accretion of particular nomenclature frequently suggests that the writer is exposing his eruditeness. Maxim Gorki said that footings must non be overused. It has been pointed out that those who are larning usage far more complicated footings than those who have already learned.

There is an interesting procedure traveling on in the development of any linguistic communication. With the addition of general instruction and the enlargement of technique to fulfill the ever-growing demands and desires of world, many words that were one time footings have bit by bit lost their quality as footings and have passed into the common literary or even impersonal vocabulary. This procedure may be called « determinization » . Such words as « wireless » , ‘ telecasting ’ and the similar have long been in common usage and their terminological character is no longer apparent.

Brain Foster in his book « The Changing English Language » writes: « … scientific discipline is one of the most powerful influences modeling in English linguistic communication into fresh forms at the present clip. Scientific authorship is non extremely esteemed for its elegance one recalls the narrative of the scientist who alluded to a certain sphere of question as a virgin field pregnant with possibilities but scientific slang and manners of idea necessarily come to the bow in a society which equates civilisation with Cr plated bath lights-outs. Nor does the procedure day of the month from yesterday, for we have long been speaking of people being ‘ galvanized ’ into activity or traveling full steam in front, but nowadays this inclination to prefer proficient imagination is of all time increasing, so that scientific discipline can genuinely be said to hold sparked off a concatenation reaction in the lingual domain » [ 3 ]

This citation clearly shows how easy footings and terminological combinations become determinized. We barely notice sometimes the terminological beginning of the words we use.

But such determinized words may by the force of a stylistic device become re-established in their terminological map, therefore presuming a double application, which is the characteristic required of a stylistic device.

But when footings are used in their normal map as footings in a work of belles lettress, they are or ought to be easy understood from the context so that the coveted consequence in picturing the state of affairs will be secured.

Here is an illustration of a moderate usage of particular nomenclature surrounding on common literary vocabulary.

« There was a long conversation along delay. His male parent came back to state it was dubious whether they could do the loan. Eight per centum, so being secured for money, was a little rate of involvement, sing its demand. For 10 per centum Mr. Kuzel might do a call-loan. Frank went back to his employer, whose commercial irritability rose at the study » ( Theodore Dreiser, « The Financier » ) .

Such footings as ‘ loan ’ , ‘ rate of involvement ’ , and the phrase ‘ to procure for money ’ are widely known fiscal footings which to the bulk of the English and American reading public need no account. The footings used here do non understood they may to some extent be neglected. It will do if the reader has a general thought, obscure though it may be, of the existent significance of the footings used. The chief undertaking of the co author in this transition is non to explicate the procedure of concern dialogues, but to make the environment of a concern atmosphere.

In this illustration the footings retain their ordinary significance though their map in the text is non precisely terminological. It is more about stylistic, inasmuch as here the footings serve the intent of qualifying the commercial spirit of the hero of the novel. However, they are non SDs because they fail to run into the chief demand of an SD.

The followers is an illustration where a term is used as an SD.

« What a sap Fawd on Crawley has been, » Clump replied, « to travel and get married a governess. There was something about the miss too. »

« Green eyes, just tegument, pretty figure, celebrated frontlet development, » Squill remarked. ( W.M. Thackeray ) .

The combination ‘ frontal development ’ is terminological in character ( used sometimes in anatomy ) . But being preceded by the word ‘ celebrated ’ used in the sense indicated by the Shorter Oxford Dictionary as ‘ a strong look of blessing ( chiefly colloquial ) , first-class, capital » the whole look assumes a specific stylistic map due to the fact that ‘ frontal development ’ is used both in its terminological facet and in its logical significance ‘ the chest of a adult female ’ .

Another illustration of the same sort footings going South dakota:

« I should wish, » said immature Jolyon, « to talk on it: Property AND QUALITIES OF A FORSYTE. This small carnal disturbed by the ridicule of his ain kind, is unaffected in his gestures by the laughter of unusual animals ( you and I ) . hereditarily disposed to myopia, he recognizes merely the individuals and home grounds of his ain species, among which he passes an being of competitory repose » . ( Galsworthy ) .

In this excerpt the double application of significances terminological and stylistic is achieved by the undermentioned agencies ; the verb to ‘ talk ( on … ) ’ and the rubric of the topic ’ belongingss and qualities ( of a Forsyte ) ’ direct the head to the sphere of scientific discipline, i.e. they are used in a terminological sense. But when they are followed by a word with nominal significance ( Forsyte ) they assume an extra significance a stylistic 1. This elan of incongruous impressions arrests the head forces it to re-evaluate the terminological significance of the words which aim at back uping the pseudo-biological and medical facet of the message-this being contained in the words ‘ kind ’ , ‘ animal ’ , small carnal ’ , ‘ species ’ , ‘ home grounds ’ , ‘ myopia ’ . This facet is besides backed up by such literary words and word – combinations as ‘ repose ’ and ‘ passes an being ’ which are in full agreement with the demands of a talk.

Whenever the footings used in the belles letters manner set the reader at odds with the text, we can register a stylistic consequence caused either by a specific usage of footings in their proper significances or by coincident realisation of two significances.

2.3 Poetic and extremely literary words

Poetic words form a instead undistinguished bed of the particular literary vocabulary. They are largely antediluvian or really seldom used extremely literary words which aim at bring forthing an elevated consequence. They have a pronounced inclination to detach themselves from the common literary word-stock an bit by bit assume the quality of footings denoting certain definite impressions and naming forth poetic enunciation.

Poetic words and looks are called upon to prolong the particular elevated ambiance of poesy. This may be said to be the chief map of poetic words.

V.V. Vinogradov gives the undermentioned belongingss of poetic words:

« … the cobweb of poetic words and images vials the world, stylising it harmonizing to the established literary norms and canons. A word is torn off organize its referent. Bing drawn into the system of literary manners, the words are selected and arranged in groups of definite images, in Phraseological series, which grow standardized and stale and are going conventional symbols of definite phenomena or characters or of definite thoughts or feelings » . [ 4 ]

Poetic tradition has kept alive such antediluvian words and signifiers as yclept( p.p.of the old verb clipian – to name, name ) ; quoth ( p.t. of clean – to talk ) ; eft soons ( eftsona, – once more, shortly after ) , which are used even by modern ballad-mongers. Let us observe in go throughing that antediluvian words are here to be understood as units that have either wholly gone out of usage, or as words some of whose significances have grown archaic, e.g. hall in the undermentioned line from Byron ’ s Childe Harold ’ s Pilgrimage.

Deserted is my ain good hall, its fireplace is bare.

It must be remembered though, that non all English poesy makes usage of « poeticisms or poetical footings » , as they might be named. In the history of English literature there were periods, as there were in many states, which were characterized by protests against the usage of such conventional symbols. The literature trends known as classicalism and romanticism were peculiarly rich in fresh poetic footings.

Poetic words in an ordinary environment may besides hold a satirical map, as seen in this transition from Byron.

But Adeline was non apathetic ; for

( Now for a common – topographic point! ) beneath the snow,

As a vent holds the lava more

Within – et cetera. Shall I go on? – No.

I hate to run down a tired metaphor,

So allow the frequently used vent go.

Poor thing: How often, by me and others, it heath been stirred up till its fume quite clutters! ( Don Juan )

The satirical map of poetic words and conventional poetic devices is good revealed in this stanza. The tired metaphor and the frequently used vents are typical of Byron ’ s estimation of heated value of conventional metaphors and stereotyped poetical looks.

The nisus for the unusual the characteristic characteristic of some sorts of poesy is a family to the sensational and is hence to be found non merely in poesy, but in many other manners.

A modern English literary critic has remarked that in journalese a police officer ne’er goes to an appointed topographic point ; he proceeds to it. The picturesque newsman seldom negotiations of a Equus caballus, it is a steed or a courser. The sky is the celestial sphere ; the valey is the valley ; fire is the devouring elements …

Poetic words and word-combinations can be likened to footings in that they do non easy give to polisemy.

They are said to arouse affectional significances. They color the vocalization with a certain air of highness, but by and large fail to bring forth a echt feeling of delectation ; Hoy are excessively hackeyed for the intent, excessively stale. And that is the ground that the inordinate usage of poeticisms at present calls forth protest and derision towards those who favor this conventional device.

Such protests have had a long history. As far back as the 16thcentury Shakespeare in a figure of lines voiced his attitude toward poeticisms, sing them as agencies to embroider poesy. Here is one of the sonnets in which he condemns the usage of such words.

Su is it non with me as with that Muse.

Stirr ’ d by a painted beauty to his poetry,

Who heaven itself for decoration doth usage

And every carnival with his just doth rehearse,

Making a complement of proud comparison,

With Sun and Moon, with Earth and sea ’ s rich treasures,

With April ’ s first-born flowers, and all things rare.

That heaven ’ s air in this immense rondure hems.

O, allow me, true in love, but genuinely write,

And so believe me, my love is as just

As any female parent ’ s kid, though non so bright

As those gilded tapers fix ’ vitamin D in Eden ’ s air ;

Let so state more that like of rumor well ;

I will non praise that purpose non to sell

( Sonnet XXI )

It is singular how Shakespeare though avoiding poetic words proper uses extremely elevated vocabulary in the first portion of the sonnet ( the octave ) , such as ‘ heaven ’ s air ’ , ‘ practise ’ , ‘ complement ’ , ‘ compare ’ ( noun ) , ‘ rondure ’ , ‘ hems ’ , in contrast to the really common vocabulary of the 2nd portion ( the sestette ) .

The really secret of a truly poetic quality of a word does non lie in conventionality of use. On the contrary, a poeticism through changeless repeat bit by bit becomes hackeyed. Like anything that lacks freshness it fails to arouse a truly aesthetic consequence and finally name away protest on the portion of those who are sensitive to existent beauty.

As far back as in 1800 Word worth raised the inquiry of the conventional usage of words and phrases, which to his head should be avoided. There was ( and still persists ) a impression called « poetic enunciation » which still means the aggregation of name, periphrases archaicisms, etc. , which were common belongings to most poets of the 18thcentury.

However, the term has now acquired a broader significance.

Therefore Owen Barfield says:

« When words are selected and arranged in such a manner that their significance either arouses or is evidently intended to elicit aesthetic imaginativeness, the consequence may be described as poetic enunciation. [ 5 ]

Poetic enunciation in the former significance has had a long line of descent. Aristotle in his « Poetics » writes the followers:

« The flawlessness of Diction is for it to be at one time clear and non intend. The clearest so is that made up of the ordinary words for things, but it is average … the enunciation becomes distinguished and non-prosaic by the usage of unfamiliar footings, i.e. unusual words, metaphors, lengthened signifiers and everything that deviates from the ordinary manners of address … A certain alloy, consequently, of unfamiliar footings is necessary. These, the unusual words, the metaphor, the cosmetic equivalent, etc. will salvage the linguistic communication from looking mean and prosaic, while the ordinary words in it will procure the needed dearness. » [ 6 ]

A good illustration of the usage of poetic words the majority of which are antediluvian is the following stanza from Byron ’ s Childe Harold ’ s Pilgrimage.

Whilome ( at some past clip ) in Albion ’ s isle ( the oldest name of the island of Britain ) there dwelt ( lived ) a young person,

Who ne ( non ) in vertu ’ s ways did take delectation:

But pass his yearss in public violence ( uneconomical life ) most coarse ( unusual, unusual ) .

And vex ’ vitamin D ( disturbed ) with hilarity ( merriment ) the drowsing ear of Night.

Ah me! ( ejaculation showing sorrow, sorrow ) in sooth ( genuinely he was a unblushing creature ( a homo being ) .

Sore ( badly, harshly ) given to delight ( noisy celebration ) and ungodly ( wicked ) hilarity ( amusement ) ;

Few earthly things found favour in his sight.

Save courtesans ( cocottes ) and animal ( non spiritual ) company,

And flaunting ( impudent ) carousers ( rummies ; revellers ) of high and low grade.

The usage of poetic words does non as a regulation create the ambiance of poesy in the true sense ; it is a replacement for existent art.

Poetic words are non freely built in contrast to impersonal, conversational and common literary words, or footings. The commonest means is by intensifying, e.g. ‘ young-eyed ’ , ‘ rosy-fingered ’ .

Some authors make abundant usage of this word-building agencies. Thus Arthur Hailey in his novel « In High Places » has ‘ serious-faced ’ , ‘ high ceilinged ’ , ‘ beige-carpeted ’ , ‘ tall backed ’ , ‘ horn-rimmed ’ in about close propinquity.

There is, nevertheless, one agency of making new poetic words still recognized as productive even in contemporary English, viz. the usage of a contracted signifier of a word alternatively of the full one, e.g. ‘ dear ’ alternatively of drab, ‘ light ’ ( =scanty ) .

Sometimes the contrary procedure leads to the birth of a poeticism, e.g. ‘ vasty ’ ( =vast. ‘ The vasty deep ’ , i.e. the ocean ) ; ‘ steepy ’ ( =steep ) , ‘ paly ’ ( =pale ) .

These two conventional devices are called Forth by the demands of the meter of the verse form, to add or take a syllable, and are by and large avoided by modern English poets.

Poetic words and set looks make the vocalization apprehensible merely to a limited member of readers. It is chiefly due to poeticisms that poetical linguistic communication is sometimes called poetical slang.

In modern English poesy there is a strong inclination to utilize words in unusual combinations. It manifests itself in the mintage of new words and, most of all, in uniting old and familiar words in a manner that hinders understanding and forces the reader to crouch and seek to decode the message so encoded.

The followers may function as illustrations ;

‘ The sound of form ’ , ‘ night-long ages ’ , ‘ to express pools of dream ’ , ‘ wings of because ’ , ‘ to harvest one ’ s same ’ , ‘ goldenly whole, prodigiously ’ acute star whom she-and he- , – like its of am perceive … ( E.E. Cummings ) .

All these combinations are considered ill-formed inasmuch as they violate the regulations of encoding a message. But in hunt of new manners of look modern poets, peculiarly those who may be called « modernists » , have a strong prejudice for all sorts of invention. They experiment with linguistic communication agencies and are ready to O.K. of any divergence from the normal. So besides are literary critics belonging to what is called the daring motion in art, the kernel of which is the usage of irregular and experimental methods? There normally lead both the poet and the critic to extremes, illustrations of which are given above.

2.4 Archaic, Obsolescent and Obsolete Words

The word-stock of a linguistic communication is in an increasing province of alteration. Wordss change their significance and sometimes drop out of the linguistic communication wholly. New words sprig up and replace the old 1s. Some words stay in the linguistic communication a vey long clip and make non lose their module of deriving new significances and going richer and richer polysemantically. Other words live but a short clip are like bubbles on the surface of H2O they disappear go forthing no hint of their being.

In registering these processes the function of lexicons can barely be over-estimated. Dictionaries serve to retain this or that word in a linguistic communication either as a relic of ancient times, where it lived and circulated, or as a still populating unit of the system, though it may hold lost some of its significance. They may besides continue certain nonce-creations which were ne’er intended for general usage.

In every period in the development of a literary linguistic communication one can happen words which will demo more or less evident alterations in their significance or use, from full energy, though a moribund province to decease, i.e. complete disappearing of the unite from the linguistic communication.

We shall separate three phases in the aging procedure of words:

The beginning of the aging procedure when the word becomes seldom used. Such words are called obsolescent, i.e. they are in the phase of bit by bit go throughing out of general usage. To this class foremost of all belong morphological signifiers belonging to the earlier phases in the development of the linguistic communication. In the English linguistic communication these are the pronouns 1000 and its signifiers thee, thy and thine: the matching verbal stoping – est and the verb-forms art, wilt ( thou makest, thou wilt ) ; the stoping – ( vitamin E ) Thursday alternatively of – ( vitamin E ) s ( he maketh ) and the pronoun ye.

To the class of obsolescent words belong many Gallic adoptions which have been kept in the literary linguistic communication as a agency of continuing the spirit of earlier periods, e.g. a palette ( a straw mattress ) , a palfrey ( a little Equus caballus ) ; garniture ( furniture ) ; to emplume ( to decorate with plumes of plumes ) .

The 2nd group of antediluvian words are those that have already gone wholly out of usage but are still recognized by the English speech production community: e.g. methinks ( it seems to me ) ; nay ( no ) . These words are called disused.

The 3rd group, which may be called antediluvian proper, are words which are no longer recognizable in modern English, words that were in usage in Old English and which have either dropped out of the linguistic communication wholly or have changed in their visual aspect so much that they have become unrecognisable, e.g. troth ( religion ) ; a losel ( a worthless, lazy chap ) .

It will be noted that on the diagram the little circles denoting archaic and poetic words convergence and both extend beyond the big circle « particular literary vocabulary » . This indicates that some of the words in these beds do non belong to the present twenty-four hours English vocabulary.

The boundary line lines between the groups are non distinguishable. In fact they interpenetrate. It is specially hard to separate between disused and obsolescent words. But the difference is of import when we come to cover with the stylistic facet of an vocalization in which the given word serves a certain stylistic intent. Obsolete and obsolescent words have separate maps, as we shall indicate out subsequently.

There is still another category of words which is mistakenly classed as archaic, viz. historical words. By gone periods in the life of any society are marked by historical events, and by establishments, imposts, material objects, etc. which are no longer in usage, for illustration. : Thane, beefeater, goblet, baldric, Mace. Wordss of this type ne’er disappear from the linguistic communication. They are historical footings and remain as footings mentioning to definite phases in the development of society and can non hence be dispensed with, though the things and phenomena to which they refer have long passed into limbo. Historical words have no equivalent word, where as antediluvian words have been replaced by modern equivalent word.

Archaic words are chiefly and preponderantly used in the creative activity of a realistic background to historical novels. It must be pointed out, nevertheless, that the usage of historical words ( footings ) in a transition written in scientific manner, say, in an essay on the history of the Danish invasion, will bear no stylistic map at all. But the same footings when used in historical novels assume a different stylistic value. They carry, as it were, a particular volume of information adding to the logical facet of the communicating.

This, the chief map of archaicisms, finds different reading in different novels by different authors. Some authors overdo things in this regard, the consequence being that the reader finds all sorts of obstructions in his manner others under estimation the necessity of presenting disused or obsolescent elements into their narrative and therefore neglect to convey what is called « local coloring material »

In his « Letter to the Young Writer » A.N. Tolstoi states that the heroes of historical novels must believe and talk in the manner the clip they live in, forces them to. If Stepan Razin, he maintain, were to talk of the initial accretion of capital, the reader would throw the book under the tabular array and he would be right. But the author must cognize all about the initial accretion of capital and position events from this peculiar place.

On the whole Tolstoy ’ s thought does non name for unfavorable judgment. But the manner it is worded may take to the misconception that heroes of historical novels should talk the linguistic communication of the period they live in. If those heroes truly spoke that linguistic communication of the clip they lived in, the reader would doubtless throw the book under the tabular array because he would be unable to understand it.

As a affair of fact the heroes of historical novels speak the linguistic communication of the period the author and the reader live in, and the accomplishment of the author is required to colourise the linguistic communication with such disused or obsolescent elements as most of course interweave with the teature of the modern literary linguistic communication. These elements must non be archaic in the narrow sense.

They must be recognizable to the native reader and non impede his apprehension of the communicating.

The trouble in managing antediluvian words and phrases and the nuance required was acutely felt by A.S. Pushikin. In his article « Juri Miloslavki, or the Russian of 1612, » Pushkin writes:

« Walter Scott carried along with him a crowd of impersonators. But how far hey are from the Scots smoothie! Like Agrippa ’ s student, they summoned the devil of the past but they could non manage him and fell victims of their ain imprudence » .

Walter Scott was so an inimitable maestro in the creative activity of an historical ambiance. He used the stylistic agencies that cerate this ambiance with the stylistic agencies that create this ambiance with such accomplishment and favoritism, that the reader is barely cognizant that the heroes of the novels talk his linguistic communication and non that of their ain era. Walter Scott himself states the rules which he considers basic for the intent ; the author ’ s linguistic communication must non be out of day of the month and hence inexplicable, but words and phrases of modern mintage should be used.

« It is one thing to utilize the linguistic communication to show feelings common both to us and to our sires, » says Scott, « but it is another thing to enforce upon them the emotions and speech features of their posterities » .

In conformity with these rule Walter Scott ne’er phonographs the linguistic communication of earlier periods ; he meagerly introduces into the texture of his linguistic communication of few words and looks more or less obsolescent in character and this is adequate to convey the coveted consequence without unduly interspersing present twenty-four hours English with out-of-date elements of address. Therefore we can happen such words as methinks, haply, nay, parturiency, meal and the similar in great figure and, of class, a multiplicity of historical footings. But you will barely happen a true archaicism of the nature indicated in our categorization as archaisms proper.

Besides the map merely mentioned, antediluvian words and phrases have other maps found in other manners. They are, first of all, often to be found in the manner of official paperss. In concern letters, in legal linguistic communication, in all sorts of legislative acts, in diplomatic paperss and in all sort of legal paperss one can happen obsolescent words which would long ago have become disused if it were non for the continuing power of the particular usage within the above mentioned domains of communicating. It is the same with antediluvian and disused words in poesy. As has already been pointed out, they are employed in the poetic manner as particular footings and therefore prevented from dropping wholly our of the linguistic communication.

Among the obsolescent elements of the English vocabulary

preserved within the manner of official paperss, the followers may be mentioned ; aforesaid, herewith, there-within, herein after named.

The map of antediluvian words and buildings in official paperss is terminological in character. They are used here because they help to keep that exactitude of look so necessary in this manner.

Archaic words and peculiarly antediluvian signifiers of words are some times used for satirical intents. This is achieved through what is called Anticlimax. The state of affairs in which the archaicism is used is non appropriate to the context at that place appears a kind of disagreement between the words really used and the ordinary state of affairs which includes the possibility of such a use. The low predictability of an archaicism when it appears in ordinary address produces the necessary satirical consequence.

Here is an illustration of such a usage of an antediluvian signifier. In Shaw ’ s play « How He Lied to Her Husband » a young person of 18 ; speech production of his feeling towards a « female of 30 seven » expresses himself in a linguistic communication which is non in conformance with the state of affairs. His words are:

« Perfect love casteth off fright » .

Archaic words, words-forms and word-combinations are besides used to make an elevated consequence. Language is specially mounded to accommodate a grave juncture ; all sorts of stylistic devices are used, and among them is the usage of archaicisms.

Some antediluvian words due to their interior qualities ( sound – texture, niceties of significance, morphological distinctive features combination power ) may be revived in a given.

2.5 Particular conversational vocabulary

2.5.1 Slang

There is barely any other term that is every bit equivocal and vague as the term slang. Slang seems to intend everything that is below the criterion of use of contemporary English.

Much has been said and written about it. This is likely due to the uncertainness of the construct itself. No 1 has yet given a more or less satisfactory definition of the term. Nor has it been specified by any linguist who deals with the job of the English vocabulary.

The first thing that strikes the bookman is the fact that no other European linguistic communication has singled out a particular bed of vocabulary and named it slang, though all of them separate such groups of words as slang, buzzword, and the similar. Why was it necessary to contrive a particular term for something that has non been clearly defined as slang or can ’ Ts have? Is this phenomenon specifically English? Has slang any particular characteristics which no other group within the non-literary vocabulary can put claim to? The differentiations between slang and other groups of unconventional English, though possibly elusive and sometimes hard to hold on, should however be subjected to a more elaborate lingual specification.

Webster ‘s « Third Mew International Dictionary » gives the undermentioned significances of the term:

Slang [ origin unknown ] 1: linguistic communication peculiar to a peculiar group: as a: the particular and frequently secret vocabulary used by a category ( as stealers, mendicants ) and usu. felt to be coarse or inferior-argot ; B: the slang used by or associated with a peculiar trade, » profession, or field of activity ; 2: a non-standard vocabulary composed of words and senses characterized chiefly by intensions of utmost informality and usu. a currency non limited to a peculiar part and composed typically of » mintages or randomly changed words, clipped or shortened signifiers, extravagant, forced or bantering figures of address, or verbal freshnesss usu. sing speedy popularity and comparatively rapid diminution into neglect.

The « New Oxford English Dictionary » defines slang as follows:

« a ) the particular vocabulary used by any set of individuals of a low or disreputable character ; linguistic communication of a low and coarse type. ( Now merged in degree Celsius, buzzword ) B ) the buzzword or slang of a certain category or period ; degree Celsiuss ) linguistic communication of a extremely conversational type considered as below the degree of standard educated address, and dwelling either of new words or of current words employed in some particular sense. »

As is seen from these citations slang is represented both as a particular vocabulary and as a particular linguistic communication. This is the first thing that causes confusion. If this is a certain lexical bed, so why should it be given the rank of linguistic communication? If, on the other manus, slang is a certain linguistic communication or a idiom or even a slang, so it should be characterized non merely by its curious usage of words but besides by phonic, morphological and syntactical distinctive features.

J.B. Greenough and C.L. Kitteridge define slang in these words:

« Slang … is a curious sort of vagabond linguistic communication, ever hanging on the outskirts of legitimate address but continually rolling or coercing its manner into the most respectable company. » [ 7 ]

Another definition of slang which is deserving citing is one made by Eric Partridge, the high pupil of the non-literary linguistic communication.

« Slang is much instead a spoken than a literary linguistic communication. It originates, about ever, in address. To coin a term on a written page is about necessarily to trade name it as a neology which will either be accepted or go a nonce-word ( or phrase ) , but, except in the rarest cases, that term will non be slang. « 3

In most of the lexicons sl. ( slang ) is used as convenient stylistic notation for a word or a phrase that can non be specified more precisely. The vague etymology of the term itself affects its usage as a stylistic notation. Whenever the notation appears in a dictionary it may function as an indicant that the unit presented is non-literary, but non pinpointed. That is the ground why the assorted lexicons disagree in the usage of this term when applied as a stylistic notation. [ 8 ]

Any new mintage that has non gained acknowledgment and therefore has non yet been received into standard English is easy branded as slang.

The Times of the 12th of March, 3957 gives the undermentioned illustrations of slang: leggo ( allow travel ) , sarge ( sergeant ) , ‘I ‘ve got a day of the month with that Miss Morris to-night ‘ . But it is obvious that leggo is a phonic improperness caused by careless rapid speech production ; sarge is a coarse equivalent of the full signifier of the word ; day of the month is, a widely recognized conversational equivalent ( equivalent word ) of the literary and even studious rendezvous ( a meeting ) .

These different and heterogenous phenomena united under the obscure term slang cause natural confusion and do non promote bookmans to seek more nonsubjective standards in order to separate the assorted stylistic beds of the English conversational vocabulary. The confusion is made still deeper by the fact that any word or look seemingly legitimate, if used in an arbitrary, notional or metaphorical sense, may easy be labelled as slang. Many words once labelled as slang have now become legitimate units of Standard English. Thus the word child ( kid ) , which was considered low slang in the 19th century, is now a legitimate conversational unit of the English literary linguistic communication.

Some linguists, when qualifying the most conspicuous characteristics of slang, point out that it requires uninterrupted invention. It ne’er grows stale. If a slang word or phrase does go stale, it is replaced by a new slangism. It is claimed that this satisfies the natural desire for fresh, freshly created words and looks, which give to an utterance emotional colouring and a subjective rating. Indeed, it seems to be in correspondence with the traditional position of English conservativism, that a particular derogatory term should hold been coined to assist continue the « pureness of standard English » by impeding the incursion into it of unwanted elements. The point is that the heterogenous nature of the term serves as a sort of barrier which checks the natural inflow of word mintages into the literary linguistic communication. True, such barriers are non without their advantage in smoothing up the literary linguistic communication. This can be proved by the progressive function played by any witting attempt to sift inventions, some of which are so felt to be unneeded, even polluting elements in the organic structure of the linguistic communication. In this regard the American newspaper may function as an illustration of how the absence of such a sifting procedure consequences in the taint of the literary lingua of the state with ugly excess mintages. Such a barrier, nevertheless, sometimes turns into an obstruction which hinders the natural development of the literary linguistic communication.

The term ‘ slang ’ , which is widely used in English lingual scientific discipline, should be clearly specified if it is to be used as a term, i. e. it should mention to some definite impression and should be definable in explicit, simple footings. It is suggested here that the term ‘slang ‘ should be used for those signifiers of the English vocabulary which are either mispronounced or distorted in some manner phonetically, morphologically or lexically. The term ‘slang ‘ should besides be used to stipulate some elements which may be called over-colloquial. As for the other groups of words hitherto classified as slang, they should be specified harmonizing to the universally recognized categorization of the vocabulary of a linguistic communication.

But this must be done by those whose female parent lingua is English. They and they merely, being native talkers of the English linguistic communication, are its Masterss and lawmakers. It is for them to put slang in its proper class by stipulating its characteristic characteristics.

Slang is nil but a divergence from the established norm at the degree of the vocabulary of the linguistic communication. V.V. Vinogradov writes that one of the undertakings set before the subdivision of lingual scientific discipline that is now called stylistics, is a thorough survey of all alterations in vocabulary, set phrases, » grammatical buildings, their maps, an rating of any interrupting off from the established norm, and categorization of errors and failures in word mintage. [ 9 ]

H. Wentworth and S. Flexner in their « Dictionary of American Slang » write:

« Sometimes slang is used to get away the dull acquaintance of standard words, to propose an flight from the established modus operandi of mundane life. When slang is used, our life seems a small freshman and a little more personal. Besides, as at all degrees of address, slang is sometimes used for the pure joy of doing sounds, or even for a demand to pull attending by doing noise. The sheer newness and informality of certain slang words produce pleasance.

« But more of import than this look of a more or less concealed aesthetic motivation on the portion of the talker is the slang ‘s contemplation of the personality, the outward, clearly seeable features of the talker. By and big, the adult male who uses slang is a forceful, pleasing, acceptable personality. »

This citation from a well-known scientific survey of slang clearly shows that what is labelled slang is either all sorts of nonce-formations – so often looking in lively mundane address and merely as rapidly vanishing from the linguistic communication – , or jesting words and word-combinations that are formed by utilizing the assorted agencies of word-building bing in the linguistic communication and besides by falsifying the signifier or sense of bing words. Here are some more illustrations of words that are considered slang:

to take stock in – ‘to be interested in, attach importance, give acceptance to

bread-basket – ‘the tummy ‘ ( a jocular usage )

to make a dart – ‘to discontinue one ‘s level or diggingss at dark without paying the rent or board ‘

putrefaction – ‘nonsense! ’

the cat ‘s pyjama – ‘the right thing ’

So wide is the term ‘slang ‘ that, harmonizing to Eric Partridge, there are many sorts of slang, e. g. Cockney, public-house, commercial, society, military, theatrical, parliamentary and others. This leads the writer to believe that there is besides a criterion slang, the slang that is common to all those who, though using received criterion in their authorship and address, besides use an informal linguistic communication which, in fact, is no linguistic communication but simply a manner of speech production, utilizing particular words and phrases in some particular sense. The most confusing definition of the nature of slang is the following one given by Partridge.

« … personality and one ‘s milieus ( societal or occupation-al ) are the two coefficients, the two head factors, the finding causes of the nature of slang, as they are of linguistic communication in general and of style. » [ 10 ]

Harmonizing to this statement one may acquire the thought that linguistic communication, manner and slang all have the same nature, the same determining causes. Personality and milieus determine:

1. the nature of the slang used by a definite individual,

2. the nature of the linguistic communication he uses,

3. the sort of manner he writes.

There is a general inclination in England and to some extent in the US to over-estimate the significance of slang by attaching to it more significance than it deserves. Slang is regarded as the ether of conversational address and hence

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