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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ It may be wondered why it is necessary, or even advantageous, to have two sorts of unit for lexical semantics.
▪ However, they can be disentangled sufficiently to allow our study of lexical semantics to proceed.
▪ At this level of specificity, therefore, these facts are of limited significance for a general study of lexical semantics.
▪ Money managers are in a better position to understand the semantics of the business.
▪ As regards metaphor, the cognitive approach appears to share something of both semantics and pragmatics.
▪ Does this mean that the semantics of natural language can not deal with truth and falsity?
▪ Lexical semantics refers to the meaning of individual words.
▪ Perhaps the debate is over semantics.
▪ The algebraic laws thus yield an algebraic semantics for occam that is isomorphic to our chosen denotational semantics.
▪ These problems alone would not make the prospects for the straight forward treatment of deictic sentences within truth-conditional semantics look very hopeful.
▪ We have said that knowing the semantics of a language involves knowing its meaning.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

General semantics \Gen"er*al sem*an"tics\, n. (1933) a doctrine and philosophical approach to language and its relationship to thought and behavior, developed by Alfred Korzybski (1879-1950), which holds that the capacity to express ideas and thereby improve one's interaction with others and one's environment is enhanced by training in the more critical use of words and other symbols; -- sometimes also called semantics.

Note: More information can be found on the web site of the [a HREF="http:]/">Institute of General Semantics.

General Semantics is the study of the relations between language, ``thought'', and behavior: between how we talk, therefore how we think, therefore how we act.
--George Doris


Semasiology \Se*ma`si*ol"o*gy\, n. [Gr. shmasi`a signification + -logy.] (Philol.) The science of meanings or sense development (of words); the explanation of the development and changes of the meanings of words; -- more commonly referred to as semantics. -- Se*ma`si*o*log"ic*al, a.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

"science of meaning in language," 1893, from French sémantique (1883); see semantic (also see -ics). Replaced semasiology (1847), from German Semasiologie (1829), from Greek semasia "signification, meaning."


n. 1 (context linguistics English) A branch of linguistics studying the meaning of words. (1893) 2 The study of the relationship between words and their meanings. 3 The individual meanings of words, as opposed to the overall meaning of a passage.


n. the study of language meaning


Semantics (from sēmantikos, "significant") is the philosophical and scientific study of meaning—in language, programming languages, formal logics, and semiotics. It focuses on the relationship between signifiers—like words, phrases, signs, and symbols—and what they stand for, their denotation.

In international scientific vocabulary semantics is also called semasiology. The word semantics was first used by Michel Bréal, a French philologist. It denotes a range of ideas—from the popular to the highly technical. It is often used in ordinary language for denoting a problem of understanding that comes down to word selection or connotation. This problem of understanding has been the subject of many formal enquiries, over a long period of time, especially in the field of formal semantics. In linguistics, it is the study of the interpretation of signs or symbols used in agents or communities within particular circumstances and contexts. Within this view, sounds, facial expressions, body language, and proxemics have semantic (meaningful) content, and each comprises several branches of study. In written language, things like paragraph structure and punctuation bear semantic content; other forms of language bear other semantic content.

The formal study of semantics intersects with many other fields of inquiry, including lexicology, syntax, pragmatics, etymology and others. Independently, semantics is also a well-defined field in its own right, often with synthetic properties. In the philosophy of language, semantics and reference are closely connected. Further related fields include philology, communication, and semiotics. The formal study of semantics can therefore be manifold and complex.

Semantics contrasts with syntax, the study of the combinatorics of units of a language (without reference to their meaning), and pragmatics, the study of the relationships between the symbols of a language, their meaning, and the users of the language. Semantics as a field of study also has significant ties to various representational theories of meaning including truth theories of meaning, coherence theories of meaning, and correspondence theories of meaning. Each of these is related to the general philosophical study of reality and the representation of meaning.

Semantics (computer science)

In programming language theory, semantics is the field concerned with the rigorous mathematical study of the meaning of programming languages. It does so by evaluating the meaning of syntactically legal strings defined by a specific programming language, showing the computation involved. In such a case that the evaluation would be of syntactically illegal strings, the result would be non-computation. Semantics describes the processes a computer follows when executing a program in that specific language. This can be shown by describing the relationship between the input and output of a program, or an explanation of how the program will execute on a certain platform, hence creating a model of computation.

Formal semantics, for instance, helps to write compilers, better understand what a program is doing and to prove, e.g., that the following if statement

if 1 = 1 then S1 else S2

has the same effect as S1 alone.

Semantics (album)

Semantics was a 1983 EP by iconic Australian surf rock band Australian Crawl. The album marked a change in the line-up of the band as Bill McDonough (drums) was replaced first by Graham Bidstrup (ex- The Angels, The Party Boys with Crawl member James Reyne) to record the EP. The more permanent replacement, after the EP, was John Watson ( Kevin Borich Express).

The EP contains their best known song and only number 1 single, " Reckless (Don't Be So)" (aka "She Don't Like That") which was written by lead singer Reyne. Listeners of Triple M voted "Reckless" the 39th best song of all time in 2007, it was the highest placed Australian Crawl song.

In the United States and Europe Semantics was released in 1984 by Geffen Records as an expanded version LP featuring the EP's four original tracks plus re-recorded versions of six earlier Australian Crawl songs. The original EP was also re-released as a CD-EP in 1996.

Australian Crawl performed "Reckless" as one of their three songs for the Oz for Africa concert (1985). This was the Australian leg of the global Live Aid show organised by Midge Ure and Bob Geldof. The "Oz for Africa" concert was broadcast on MTV, but only performances by Australian band INXS were placed on the 20th Anniversary DVD collection.

Usage examples of "semantics".

The semantics and logic circuits were assembled and made ready for use before the other circuits were even begun.

The semantics and logic circuits alone should require an even hundred kilowatts of power.

It was all a matter of semantics and viewpoints, but Vestolian had to waste three days with ambassadors from the two hundred worlds rather than commit his military forces to the only viable alternative.

A basic proposition of epistemology, bedrock both for the three basic statements of semantics and for information theory, is that an observed fact requires no proof.

I think I presented the facts of General Semantics so well, and so skilfully, in World of Null-A and its sequel that the readers thought that that was all I should be doing.

By studying all the paths of liberation, including General Semantics and the writings of the British libertarian philosophers who inspired the American Revolution - not to mention the works of the anarchists - we can begin to identify and ferret out these authoritarian-submissive presumptions that have deprived us of our natural reason.

Hayakawa, as the Institute for General Semantics was dose to where we lived - across the Mall and east a couple of blocks at 1234 East 56th.

Besides that, I have been urged to tackle a primer of semantics and general semantics.

Go through those drills I gave you on logical processes and general semantics.

Robinson goes on to list a half-page or so of other constant concerns and themes: multiple identity, advances in technology leading to hedonistic comfort, the balance of privilege and responsibility, alternate histories, alternatives to monogamy and conventional marriage, the metric system, general semantics.

She had sought deeper truths by way of Zen, General Semantics, the Bates eyesight exercises, and the readings of Edgar Cayce.

I used to know the old fag when I studied General Semantics with Dick Dettering at S.

At the Semantics Institute they have constructed tubes in series around highly improved lie detectors that can examine the body and mind of a man at a glance and tell the degree of null-A training he has received.

But if it challenges you to argue semantics with it, and you don't lose your cool .

Besides having suitable genes, he had been through the Intelligence Corps' unmercifully rigorous courses in linguistics and metalinguistics, semantics and metasemantics, every known trick of concentration and memorization.