The triangle of reference, from the influential book The Meaning of Meaning (1923) by C. K. Ogden and I. A. Richards.

Study of reference, meaning, or truth.

- Semantics

500 related topics



Relationship between objects in which one object designates, or acts as a means by which to connect to or link to, another object.

The triangle of reference, from the influential book The Meaning of Meaning (1923) by C. K. Ogden and I. A. Richards.

In semantics, reference is generally construed as the relationships between nouns or pronouns and objects that are named by them.


Study of how context contributes to meaning.

The six factors of an effective verbal communication. To each one corresponds a communication function (not displayed in this picture).

Theories of pragmatics go hand-in-hand with theories of semantics, which studies aspects of meaning, and syntax which examines sentence structures, principles, and relationships.


Sign languages have a phonological system equivalent to the system of sounds in spoken languages.

Nikolai Trubetzkoy, 1920s
The vowels of modern (Standard) Arabic and (Israeli) Hebrew from the phonemic point of view. Note the intersection of the two circles—the distinction between short a, i and u is made by both speakers, but Arabic lacks the mid articulation of short vowels, while Hebrew lacks the distinction of vowel length.
The vowels of modern (Standard) Arabic and (Israeli) Hebrew from the phonetic point of view. Note that the two circles are totally separate—none of the vowel-sounds made by speakers of one language is made by speakers of the other.

(b) all levels of language where sound or signs are structured to convey linguistic meaning.

Principle of compositionality

The triangle of reference, from the influential book The Meaning of Meaning (1923) by C. K. Ogden and I. A. Richards.

In semantics, mathematical logic and related disciplines, the principle of compositionality is the principle that the meaning of a complex expression is determined by the meanings of its constituent expressions and the rules used to combine them.

Lexical semantics

Taxonomy showing the hypernym "color"
An example of a semantic network
Hale and Keyser 1990 structure
Halle & Marantz 1993 structure
Larson's proposed binary-branching VP-shell structure for (9)
General tree diagram for Larson's proposed underlying structure of a sentence with causative meaning

Lexical semantics (also known as lexicosemantics), as a subfield of linguistic semantics, is the study of word meanings.

Meaning (philosophy)

Memberships of a graded class

In semantics, semiotics, philosophy of language, metaphysics, and metasemantics, meaning "is a relationship between two sorts of things: signs and the kinds of things they intend, express, or signify".


A presupposition must be mutually known or assumed by the speaker and addressee for the utterance to be considered appropriate in context.

Hasse diagram of logical connectives.

A significant amount of current work in semantics and pragmatics is devoted to a proper understanding of when and how presuppositions project.


Meaning of a declarative sentence.

Argument terminology used in logic

It can generally be used to refer to some or all of the following: The primary bearers of truth values (such as "true" and "false"); the objects of belief and other propositional attitudes (i.e. what is believed, doubted, etc.); the referents of "that"-clauses (e.g. "It is true that the sky is blue" and "I believe that the sky is blue" both involve the proposition the sky is blue); and the meanings of declarative sentences.

Semantic Web

Extension of the World Wide Web through standards set by the World Wide Web Consortium .

Graph resulting from the RDFa example
Graph resulting from the RDFa example, enriched with further data from the Web
The Semantic Web Stack

To enable the encoding of semantics with the data, technologies such as Resource Description Framework (RDF) and Web Ontology Language (OWL) are used.

Prosody (linguistics)

Concerned with elements of speech that are not individual phonetic segments but are properties of syllables and larger units of speech, including linguistic functions such as intonation, stress, and rhythm.

A top-down view of the larynx.

This sort of expression stems not from linguistic or semantic effects, and can thus be isolated from traditional linguistic content.