A Dictionary of Linguistics

A Dictionary of Linguistics

A Dictionary of Linguistics

A Dictionary of Linguistics

Excerpt

Grammatical terminology, based upon the prescriptive principles of Classical grammarian's and the well-defined structure of the Indo-European languages, has been traditional since the days of ancient Greece.The largely historical linguistic discipline evolved in the course of the 19th century led to the creation of a considerable body of terms used to describe changes of a diachronic nature.It remained for the 20th century, with its emphasis upon synchronic, descriptive and structural linguistics, to evolve another, abundant terminology which is, even at the present moment, in a state of flux, with new terms being created and existing terms being either discarded or redefined and reinterpreted.There is obvious need for a work of reference that will present, with simplified definitions, at least the more commonly used and accessible terms in vogue among those who devote themselves to linguistic pursuits.Accordingly, the editors have endeavored to compile a dictionary that will include:

a. the general run of traditional grammatical terms, even though they already appear in standard dictionaries and works of reference;

b. the more frequently used terminology of the field of historical linguistics, as it is used in the manuals of the last century and a half;

c. that portion of the terminology of modern descriptive linguistics concerning which there is some measure of agreement among its users;

d. the names, affiliations, and very brief descriptions of the major languages and dialects of the world, both past and present.

This work makes no pretense whatsoever of being either definitive or exhaustive. The field of linguistic terminology changes . . .

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