Semantics

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By David A. Pharies

This monograph is set the semiotics of lexical symptoms, and is of specific curiosity for ancient linguists, specifically these attracted to etymology. experts in linguistic switch have lengthy spotted that convinced periods of phrases appear to be partially exempt from typical styles of sound switch, or even likely to suffer strange analogical shifts. the matter is way worse for the etymologist, because the lexicon of each language includes a few hundreds of thousands of semiotically frustrating vocables which needs to, if the etymological dictionaries are ever to be accomplished, be defined one way or the other. constantly been struck via the sheer capriciousness of etymologies within which a few type of strange form-meaning family members are concerned, the writer, with the aid of C.S. Peirce, presents solutions to the most important questions in his seek to make feel of these capricious etymologies.

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E . the recognitio n tha t lif e flow s like a river) , i t ca n b e interprete d a s inherentl y fit t o represent , amon g othe r things, th e contiguou s ide a 'river' . e . on e involvin g a n inde x o f a certain kind . I thin k this explanatio n i s perfectly i n harmony with Peircian doctrine, though I cannot guarantee that it reflects th e way he actually conceived it . PEIRCE AN D THE LINGUISTIC SIGN 37 Before leavin g the subject o f icons, I must pause to address two more (besides Greenlee's) misconception s tha t hav e becom e attache d t o iconicit y i n th e literature, viz.

22) 7 Se e Murphey (1961 : 370 ) fo r a broader treatment . 8 I n actuality , Peirc e seem s t o vacillat e betwee n identifyin g semioti c wit h logi c as a whole, or wit h speculativ e gramma r only . Broc k (1976 : 1 1 1 - 5 ) argue s thi s poin t a t length . 228) , Peirc e substitute s 'pur e rhetoric ' for 'methodeutic' . Th e tas k o f th e forme r i s 't o ascertai n th e law s b y whic h i n ever y scientific intelligenc e on e sig n give s birt h t o another , an d especiall y on e though t bring s forth another.

I f th e answer s t o al l possible question s of fac t ar e discovere d durin g thi s generation, i t wil l en d here. If these question s have no t ye t bee n answere d whe n mankin d become s extinct , investigatio n ma y still continue , becaus e ma n i s very likel y no t th e sol e forc e o f rationality in the universe: PEIRCE AN D THE LINGUISTIC SIGN 2 5 'And th e catholi c consent which constitutes the truth is by no means to be limited to men i n thi s earthl y lif e o r t o th e huma n race , but extend s to the whole communion of mind s t o whic h w e belong , includin g som e probabl y whos e sense s are very dif ferent fro m o u r s .

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