05/04/2020 Art Linguistics Philosophy
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-45369-4_5-1 SemanticScholar ID: 189962124 MAG: 2275082282

Figurative language and lexicography

Publication Summary

This chapter explores the issues in dealing with figurative language in dictionaries. It uses the understanding of “figurative language” that is generally shared by applied and corpus linguists, as opposed to scholars of poetry and literature. In this understanding, “figurative language” covers all uses that are understood in some way as being an extension or transference of meaning from a literal meaning; the term is not restricted to novel or creative uses. This understanding of “figurative” therefore includes conventionalized uses of words, such as warm to describe friendly behavior, or see to describe thinking, as well as more recent but established uses such as green to describe environmental issues. By far the most studied kind of figurative language is metaphor, which is the focus of most of this chapter. Metonymy is increasingly recognized as important and is also mentioned. As is well known, many, if not most, idioms have their origins in metaphor or metonymy (Moon 1998), and these also present something of a challenge to lexicography. They are referred to here but are discussed in detail elsewhere in this handbook.

CAER Authors

Avatar Image for Alice Deignan

Prof. Alice Deignan

University of Leeds - Professor of Applied Linguistics

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