What is etymology

What is etymology

Using any given words in the daily speech, the person usually does not think of the history of their origin. Another matter – linguists. They spend a lot of time for getting to the bottom of true word meaning and to restore a way of their development. There is even a special section of linguistics devoted to these questions which is called etymology.

Etymology: two approaching a concept

The term "etymology" has the Greek roots and comes from the words "truth" and "doctrine". Usually this concept is used in two major importances which should not be confused. When speak about etymology of a separate word, usually mean establishment of its historical roots. Quite often this term is used for designation of the section of linguistics which just and researches origin of words.

The principles of this science can quite be applied also to the term "etymology". For the first time it meets in works of ancient philosophers of Greece. Components of this word have values "true, true" and "sense, the doctrine". In other words, the etymology puts the task finding of true meaning of words. For linguists the search of a word meaning which invested in it at the time of creation and also tracking dynamics of change of initial sense is of particular importance.

Developing, words change not only the values, but also an external form. Undergoes change, in particular, sound expression and phonetic shape of a word. If scientists manage to restore the most ancient form of the term, then the question with its origin often clears up. Sometimes it turns out that ancient sounding assumed at all not that sense which in a word is put by modern native speakers.

Etymology as science

As sciences should be considered an etymology subject a research of process of creation of dictionary structure of language and sources of word formation. The linguists who are engaged in etymology seek to reconstruct whenever possible more precisely structure of language, since the most ancient periods when writing only arose. The etymological analysis is directed to definition of that word-formation model on which there was a certain word. Especially fascinatingly happens to track historical changes of primary forms and their consecutive transformation. Among methods of etymology it is possible to call the genetic analysis and comparative-historical approach which are most often used in a complex. Being the section of linguistics, the etymology is very closely connected with other sciences about language: lexicology, morphology, semantics, dialectology. Without data which are provided by etymology it is difficult to understand the nature of shifts in semantic structures which occur at historical development of the speech. Methods of etymology allow to get on those chronological levels where written history did not exist yet. This science complements with the data data which the mankind gets from history and archeology.

Author: «MirrorInfo» Dream Team