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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter November 18, 2021

Visions of lexicography of a semantic European

  • Oskar Reichmann
From the journal Lexicographica


In this essay, it is assumed that the languages of Latin Europe do have many semantic features in common, which contradicts the prevailing view of a general semantic particularity of every individual language and thus the exploitation for national-political purposes arising from that view. However, the proposition made here requires a summary and the assessment of different semantic concepts led by the idea of commonality. By means of individual cases that can be understood as relevant examples, a vision of lexicography will follow that aims at replacing the biologistic concept of a genetic explanation for contrastive semantics by the concept of a comparative semantics that is based on socio-historical, cultural-historcial and textual-historical arguments. In doing so, a historiography relating to the subject-matter of “semantics” will be suggested that assigns a semantic bridging function to Late Antiquity / Early Medieval Latin in relation to all languages of Latin Europe. The logic of the argument implies that a new era of semantic history begins upon the development of a structure of national languages in Europe, whose historical basis can still be recognised in the semantic communalities.

Online erschienen: 2021-11-18
Erschienen im Druck: 2021-11-12

© 2021 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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