The repetition of phonemic chaeacteristics in radical morphemes in sets of synonyms from indo-european languages*
Keywords:The repetition of phonemic chaeacteristics in radical morphemes in sets of synonyms from indo-european languages*
The next two notional groups to be examined in our inquiry investigating the correlation between sound and meaning are the group narrow, knead, thick (in density), and the group touch, stretch, put. The first contains in its radical morphemes a much greater number of nasal phonemic characteristics than expected from the Representative Sample. The second one presents the case of an unusual accumulation of dental phonemic characteristics. These groups have been established by the same method of selection of synonymic sets from Buck's dictionary employed already for the groups smooth and rough, and they have also approximately the same size. The hypothesis of a physiologically founded sound symbolism has been the criterion for constituting our groups here and there. In the same way as we quoted Plato's view of a natural connection between I and smoothness and between r and roughness, we can for the sound·symbolism of dentals appeal to the frequent - acoustically unexplained - appearing of these phonemes in the so-called »echoic« verbs and interjections for touching; striking, and falling, and on the other side to a largely accepted view of the correlation between the gesture of indicating (stretching the arm, the finger) and the use of »centrifugal« dentals in demonstrative and personal pronoums. Similarly the »centripetal« expressivity of nasals - on the physiological basis of tactile and proprioceptive sensations from the combined pressure of the muscles of (lips,) tongue and soft palate - has been repeatedly emphasized by linguists and psychologists. Darwin's observation in his treatise The expression of emotions about the involuntary accompaniment of the movements of the hands and the movements of the organs of speech can be considered as a supplementary clue of explanation being valid in both cases
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