Minor Types of Lexical Opposition (Shortened Words) (42927)

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The English and Literature department

Halimova Muborak’s qualification work on speciality 5220100, English philology on the theme:

Shortened words Minor types of lexical opposition




I. Introduction.

1.1. Common characteristics of the qualification work

2.1. General definition of homonyms

II. The Main Part

1.2. Shortening of spoken words

2.2. Graphical abbreviations and acronyms

3.2. Abbreviations as the major type of shortenings

4.2. Secondary ways of shortening: sound interchange and sound imitating

5.2. Blendening of words

6.2. Back formation

7.2. Back formation as a source for shortening of words

III. Conclusion

1.3. Total review of the subject discussed

2.3. The ways of applying of the work

IV. Bibliography


1.1 Common characteristics of the qualification work

The theme of my qualification work sounds as following: “Type of shortening and their function in Modern English” This qualification work can be characterized by the following:

The actuality of this work caused by several important points. We seem to say that the shortening of the words is one of the main trends in development of Modern English, especially in its colloquial layer, which, in its turn at high degree is supported by development of modern informational technologies and simplification of alive speech. So the significance of our work can be proved by the following reasons:

a) Shortening of words is one of the developing branches of lexicology nowadays.

b) Shortening reflects the general trend of simplification of a language.

c) Shortening is closely connected with the development of modern informational technologies.

d) Being a developing branch of linguistics it requires a special attention of teachers to be adequated to their specialization in English.

Having based upon the actuality of the theme we are able to formulate the general goals of our qualification work.

a) To study, analyze, and sum up all the possible changes happened in the studied branch of linguistics for the past fifty years.

b) To teach the problem of shortening to young English learners.

c) To demonstrate the significance of the problem for those who want to brush up their English.

d) To mention all the major of linguists’ opinions concerning the subject studied.

If we say about the new information used within our work we may note that the work studies the problem from the modern positions and analyzes the modern trends appeared in this subject for the last ten years. In particular, the shorten language of computer chats was taken into consideration.

The practical significance of the work can be concluded in the following items:

a) The work could serve as a good source of learning English by young teachers at schools and colleges.

b) The lexicologists could find a lot of interesting information for themselves.

c) those who would like to communicate with the English-speaking people through the Internet will find a shortened language of chats in our qualification work.

Having said about the linguists studied the material before we can mention that our qualification work was based upon the investigations made by a number of well known English, Russian and Uzbek lexicologists as A.I. Smirnitsky, B.A. Ilyish, N. Buranov, V.V. Vinogradov, O. Jespersen and some others.

If we say about the methods of scientific approaches used in our work we can mention that the method of typological analysis was used.

The novelty of the work is concluded in including the language of charts to one of the chapter of the qualification work.

The general structure of our qualification work looks as follows:

The work is composed onto three major parts: introduction, main part and conclusion. Each part has its subdivision onto the specific thematically items. There are two points in the introductory part: the first item tells about the general content of the work while the other gives us the general explanation of the lexicological phenomenon of shortening in a language. The main part bears the eight points in itself. The first point explains the shortening of spoken words in particular. The second item analyzes the phenomenon of graphical abbreviations and acronyms. In the third point we study abbreviations as the major way of shortening. In the fourth paragraph of the qualification work we deal with the secondary ways of shortening: sound interchange and sound imitation. The fifth paragraph takes into consideration the question of Blendening of words. The sixth item shows us the back formation examples. The last paragraph of the main part analyzes the homonymy influence onto the appearing of shortening.

The conclusion of the qualification work sums up the ideas discussed in the main part (the first item) and shows the ways of implying of the qualification work (in the second item).

2.1 General definition of homonyms

Word-building processes involve not only qualitative but also quantitative changes. Thus, derivation and compounding represent addition, as affixes and free stems, respectively, are added to the underlying form. Shortening, on the other hand, may be represented as significant subtraction, in which part of the original word is taken away. The spoken and the written forms of the English language have each their own patterns of shortening, but as there is a constant exchange between both spheres, it is sometimes difficult to tell where a given shortening really originated.


The shortening of words consists in sub-of words Graphical a part for a whole. The process оf shortening is not confined only to words; many word-groups also become shortened in the pro­cess of communication. Therefore, the term "shortening of words" is to be regarded as conventional, as it involves the shortening of both words and word-groups.

Distinction should be made between shortening of words in written speech and in the sphere of oral intercourse. Shortening of words in written speech results in graphical abbreviations which are, in fact, signs representing words and word-groups of high frequency of occurrence in various spheres of human activity; note, for instance, RD for Road and St for Street in addresses on envelopes and in letters; to for tube, are for aerial in Radio Engineering literature, etc. English graphical abbreviations include rather numerous shortened variants of Latin and French words and word-groups, e. g. a. m. (L. ante meridian)—'in the morning, before noon'; p. m. (L. post meridian)—’in the afternoon, afternoon'; i.e. (L. widest)—'that is'; R. S. V. P. (Fr. Repondez sil vous plait) — 'reply please', etc.

The characteristic feature of graphical abbreviations is that they are restricted in use to written speech, occurring only in various kinds of texts, articles, books, advertisements, letters, etc. In reading many of them are substituted by the words and phrases that they represent, e. g., Dr.-doctor, Mr.-mister, Oct.-October, etc., the abbreviations of Latin and French words and phrases being usually read as their Eng­lish equivalents. It is only natural that in the course of language development some graphical abbreviations should gradually penetrate into the sphere of oral intercourse and, as a result, turn into lexical abbreviations used both in oral and written speech. That is the case, for instance, with M. P. Member of Parliament, S.O.S. Save our Souls, etc. Lexical Shortened variants of words and shortening, phrases are used as independent lexical units with a certain phonetic shape and a semantic structure of their own. Some of them occur both in oral and written speech, others only in oral colloquial speech, cf. bus, mike, phone, on the one hand, and trig, math’s, sis, on the other.

In most cases a shortened word exists in the vocabulary together with the longer word from which it is derived and usually has the same lexical meaning1 differing only in emotive charge and stylistic reference. The question naturally aris­es whether the shortened forms and the original forms should be considered separate words. Some linguists hold the view that as the two units (e. g. exam and examination) do not differ in meaning but only in stylistic application, it would be wrong to apply the term word to the shortened unit. In fact, the shortened unit is a word-variant (e. g. exam is a word-variant of the word examination).

Other linguists contend that even when the original word and its shortened form are generally used with "a difference in the implied tone of feeling" they are both to be recognized as two distinct words. If this treatment of the process of word-shortening is accepted, the essential difference between the shortening of words and the usual process of word-formation (such as affixation, compounding, etc.) should be pointed out. It will be recalled that words built by affixation, for instance, are of a more complex character both structurally and semantically, cf. teach—teacher, develop—s- development, usual-unusual, etc. It is not the case with word-shortening; shortened words are structurally simple words and, as was mentioned above, in most cases have the same lexical meaning as the longer words from which they are derived. Another peculiarity of word-shortening if treated as a derivational process is that there are no structural patterns after which new shortened words could be coined. At any rate, linguistic research has failed to establish any so far.

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