Temperature adjectives in Finnish

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This paper provides a descriptive and theoretical account of Finnish temperature adjectives as a system consisting of a three-term core and a supplementary set. The former are unrestricted with respect to a number of grammatical and semantic parameters proposed in cross-linguistic and typological studies, whereas the latter have restricted availability in temperature subdomains or express additional semantic distinctions. In metaphorical uses of the adjectives, the base of semantic extensions is argued to be the culturally grounded emotional charge of positive or negative evaluation that gives rise to thermal preferences of different kinds of emotions. Metaphorical extensions not only involve changes in the argument structure of a term, but also significant increase in the use of syntactic frames with abstract situational semantics.


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