In contrast to the notion of sense relations, polysemy and homonymy refer to similarities rather than differences between meanings. A word is polysemous when. Abstract. In this article we examine the concepts of polysemy and homonymy. After a broad overview of the topic we focus on the treatment of several examples . Polysemy and homonymy are semantic phenomena that are part of our everyday language. Polysemous words possess two or more related senses; homonyms.

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Homonymy has completely different meanings.

This is the main difference between polysemy and homonymy. Her areas of interests include literature, language, linguistics and also food. A word becomes polysemous if it can be used to express different meanings.

Polysemy is the coexistence of many possible meanings for a word or phrase. Given below are some examples of homonyms:. Although the meanings of the underlined word pairs only have a subtle difference. Polysemy has different, yet related meanings.


Homonymy refers to the existence of two or more words having the same spelling or pronunciation but different meanings and origins. His cottage is near a small wood.

Polysemous words can be understood if you know the meaning of one word. The meaning of homonymous words cannot be guessed since the words have unrelated meanings. Polysemous words are listed under one entry in dictionaries. The enraged actor sued the newspaper. Some words do not have the same spellings, but they share same the same pronunciation. Polysemy refers to the coexistence of many possible meanings for a word or phrase.

He forgot to milk the cow. Polysemy and Homonymy are two similar concepts in linguistics. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. Homonymy refers to two unrelated words that look or sound the same. But, examining the origins of the words can help to decide whether a word is polysemic or homonymous.

Difference Between Polysemy and Homonymy

Two or more words become homonyms if they either sound poylsemy same homophoneshave the same spelling homographsor if they both homophones and homographs, but do not have related meanings. The statue was made out of a block of wood. It is sometimes difficult to determine whether a word is polysemous or not because the relations between words can be vague and unclear. He fixed his hair.


He read the newspaper. The above two examples are both written and read alike; they have the same spellings and sounds. Both of them refer to words having multiple meanings. The origins of the words are related. He drank a glass of milk.

Difference Between Polysemy and Homonymy | Definition, Meaning, Word Origin, etc.

They fixed a date for the wedding. Such words are generally listed in dictionaries under one entry; numbers may be used to denote the subtle differences. The difference between these meanings can be obvious or subtle. Polysemy refers to words or phrases with different, but related meanings.