Say what l o to explore the processes that allow new meanings to emerge
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Say, what? L/O: to explore the processes that allow new meanings to emerge. Key terms : Neologism – a new word (generally through science and technology) (iphone, ipad) Acronym – a word made of the initial letters of all the words in a name or a phrase (NASA)

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Say what l o to explore the processes that allow new meanings to emerge
Say, what?L/O: to explore the processes that allow new meanings to emerge

Key terms:

Neologism – a new word (generally through science and technology) (iphone, ipad)

Acronym – a word made of the initial letters of all the words in a name or a phrase (NASA)

Initialism – a phrase often abbreviated to initial letters used on a regular basis(NQT)

Trademark erosion/antonomasia– when a company name or product name takes the place of the object (Hoover)

Portmanteau – another word (and a fancier one!) for blends (shopping + alcoholic = shopaholic)


Last lesson, we considered some of the languages that have fed into the English languages. Which languages have highly influenced English?

Old EnglishFrenchGreek/Latin

Ask question interrogate

Eat consume ingest

Fight combat hostilities

Rise mount ascend

Folk people nation

Write a sentence in Old English, then change it to French, then Greek/Latin

What can you say about the effects these languages have had on modern English?


By what processes do meanings emerge? fed into the English languages. Which languages have highly influenced English?

1. Look at the Coco Chanel example and the commentary.

Look at how the commentary explains how the use of language reflects the topic and the function.

Challenge: What about the audience and register?

2. Look back at the Regan and King speeches and write a brief paragraph about the difference in language choice alters the register between the texts and how this might relate to purpose and/or implied audience?

  • Reagan’s speech has a higher Latinate or Greek-derived word-count; King’s speech has more words of Old English/Norse origin.

  • Does one sound more formal than the other?

  • Does the higher frequency of Latinate or Latin loan words affect the apparent complexity of the text?

  • Why might each speaker have adopted his chosen register?


Using appropriate terminology, discuss how these made-up words might have entered into, or altered their meanings in, English:

We’re going to shift our attention, now, from etymology and its relation to register, to processes by which words and meanings are introduced, changed, developed… We’re going to become neologists!

  • Spide (verb):To move like a spider; derivational suffixes affect word-classes. For example, -er usually converts a verb into a noun. Therefore, removing the –er suffix from concrete noun “spider” could lead to the verb “spide.”

  • Bookaholic (portmanteau/blend word; noun):

  • Buscar (con. noun):

  • Busc (verb; derive from buscar):


Using appropriate terminology, discuss how these made-up words might have entered into, or altered their meanings in, English:

Can you think of any words that have entered the language via any of the routes/processes mentioned?

PIMAD (acron.):

SLFR (initialism):

Clegg (antonomasia/Trademark erosion):


How much do you know about common portmanteau words
How much do you know about common portmanteau words??? words might have entered into, or altered their meanings in, English:


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