Annual Review of Cognitive Linguistics: Volume 7
  • ISSN 1572-0268
  • E-ISSN: 1572-0276
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The central concern of the present paper are metonymy avoidance strategies as a limiting case of polysemy resolution. Specifically, I look into the role of suffixation in the resolution of metonymy-induced polysemy in a number of languages (Germanic, Romance, Slavic and Hungarian) in two frames, animals and their meat, and trees and woods. The particular mix of strategies a language makes use of is of course dependent on its structural makeup. It is established that Slavic languages do not really have many choices apart from suffixation in the resolution of metonymy-induced polysemy. The analysis of patterns of suffixation found in six Slavic languages reveals that unlike compounding, which as good as removes any ambiguity in spite of its underspecificity, suffixation as a polysemy-resolving strategy is even more underspecified, and as an interesting twist, prone to contract additional polysemy or just relegate it to another level.


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