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Sound Symbolism in Basic Vocabulary
AbstractThe relationship between meanings of words and their sound shapes is to a large extent arbitrary, but it is well known that languages exhibit sound symbolism effects violating arbitrariness. Evidence for sound symbolism is typically anecdotal, however. Here we present a systematic approach. Using a selection of basic vocabulary in nearly one half of the world’s languages we find commonalities among sound shapes for words referring to same concepts. These are interpreted as due to sound symbolism. Studying the effects of sound symbolism cross-linguistically is of key importance for the understanding of language evolution.
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Wichmann, S.; Holman, E.W.; Brown, C.H. Sound Symbolism in Basic Vocabulary. Entropy 2010, 12, 844-858.View more citation formats
Wichmann S, Holman EW, Brown CH. Sound Symbolism in Basic Vocabulary. Entropy. 2010; 12(4):844-858.Chicago/Turabian Style
Wichmann, Søren; Holman, Eric W.; Brown, Cecil H. 2010. "Sound Symbolism in Basic Vocabulary." Entropy 12, no. 4: 844-858.