1887
Volume 6, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2214-3157
  • E-ISSN: 2214-3165
USD
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes

Abstract

Abstract

Seen from a broad cross-linguistic perspective, the English verb is quite unusual because it has very broad scope: it can apply to a mother’s love, a husband’s love, a sister’s love, etc. without any restrictions whatsoever; and the same applies to its counterparts in many other European languages. Trying to locate the origins of this phenomenon, I have looked to the Bible. Within the Bible, I have found both continuity and innovation. In the Hebrew Bible, the verb ’, rendered in the Greek translation of the Old Testament known as the Septuagint with the verb , implies a “preferential love”, e.g. it is used for a favourite wife of a favourite son. In the New Testament, the concept of ‘love’ loses the “preferential” components and thus becomes applicable across the board: between anybody and anybody else.

The paper argues that the very broad meaning of verbs like in English, in French, in German, etc. reflects a shared conceptual heritage of many European languages, with its roots in the New Testament; and it shows that by taking a semantic perspective on these historical developments, and exploring them through the rigorous framework of NSM and Minimal English, we can arrive at clear and verifiable hypotheses about a theme which is of great general interest, regardless of one’s own religious and philosophical views and commitments.

Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1075/ijolc.18006.wie
2020-01-24
2020-04-01
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

References

  1. Ackerman, Susan
    (2002) The personal is political: Covenantal and affectionate love (’āhēb, ’ahăbâ) in the Hebrew Bible. Vetus TestamentumLII (4): 437–458. 10.1163/156853302320764780
    https://doi.org/10.1163/156853302320764780 [Google Scholar]
  2. Botterweck, G. Johannes & Helmer Ringgren
    (eds.) Translated byJohn T. Willis (1972) Theological dictionary of the Old Testament. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. Collins Wordbanks
    Collins Wordbanks. https://wordbanks.harpercollins.co.uk/, accessed18 June 2018.
  4. Freedman, David Noel
    (ed.) (1992) The Anchor Bible Dictionary. New York: Doubleday.
    [Google Scholar]
  5. Gerber, Eleanor
    (1985) Rage and obligation: Samoan emotions in conflict. InGeoffrey M. White & John Kirkpatrick (eds), Person, self, and experience: exploring Pacific ethnopsychologies. Berkeley: University of California Press. pp.121–67.
    [Google Scholar]
  6. Goddard, Cliff
    (1990) The lexical semantics of ‘good feelings’ in Yankunytjatjara. Australian Journal of Linguistics10 (2): 257–292. 10.1080/07268609008599444
    https://doi.org/10.1080/07268609008599444 [Google Scholar]
  7. (1991) Testing the Translatability of Semantic Primitives into an Australian Aboriginal Language. Anthropological Linguistics33 (1): 31–56.
    [Google Scholar]
  8. (1996) The “social emotions” of Malay (Bahasa Melayu). Ethos24 (3): 426–464. 10.1525/eth.1996.24.3.02a00020
    https://doi.org/10.1525/eth.1996.24.3.02a00020 [Google Scholar]
  9. (compiler) (1996) Pitjantjatjara/Yankunytjatjara to English Dictionary, revised2 edn.Alice Spring: IAD Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  10. (compiler) (2011 [1998]) Semantic analysis: A practical introduction. Second edition (first edition 1998) Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  11. (2018) Minimal English for a Global World: Improved Communication Using Fewer Words. Palgrave Macmillan. 10.1007/978‑3‑319‑62512‑6
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-62512-6 [Google Scholar]
  12. Goddard, Cliff & Anna Wierzbicka
    (2014) Words and Meanings: Lexical Semantics across Domains, Languages & Cultures. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  13. (eds.) (1994) Semantic and Lexical Universals. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 10.1075/slcs.25
    https://doi.org/10.1075/slcs.25 [Google Scholar]
  14. (eds.) (2002) Meaning and Universal Grammar: Theory and Empirical Findings. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
    [Google Scholar]
  15. Heider, Karl
    (1991) Landscapes of Emotion: Mapping three cultures of emotion in Indonesia. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press; Paris: Editions de la maison des sciences de l’homme. 10.1017/CBO9780511527715
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511527715 [Google Scholar]
  16. Levy, Robert
    (1973) Tahitians: mind and experience in the Society Islands. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Lewis, Charlton T. & Charles Short
    (eds.) (1962) A Latin Dictionary. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. Lewis, C. S.
    (1977) Four Loves. London: Fount.
    [Google Scholar]
  19. Liddell, Henry George & Robert Scott
    (1963) A Lexicon Abridged from Liddell and Scott’s Greek-English Lexicon. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  20. Lutz, Catherine
    (1985) Ethnopsychology compared to what? Explaining behaviour and consciousness among the Ifaluk. InGeoffrey M. White & John Kirkpatrick (eds), Person, self, and experience: exploring Pacific ethnopsychologies. Berkeley: University of California Press. pp.35–79.
    [Google Scholar]
  21. (1988) Unnatural Emotions. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 10.7208/chicago/9780226219783.001.0001
    https://doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226219783.001.0001 [Google Scholar]
  22. McKenzie, John L.
    (1995) The Dictionary of the Bible. London: G. Chapman.
    [Google Scholar]
  23. Men’, Alexander
    (1969) The Son of Man. Online. www.alexandrmen.ru/books/son_max/son_max.html, accessed10 August 2017.
    [Google Scholar]
  24. Metzger, Bruce M. & Michael D. Coogan
    (eds.) (1993) The Oxford Companion to the Bible. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 10.1093/acref/9780195046458.001.0001
    https://doi.org/10.1093/acref/9780195046458.001.0001 [Google Scholar]
  25. New Catholic Encyclopedia (prepared by an Editorial Staff at the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C) (1967) New York: Mcgraw-Hill.
    [Google Scholar]
  26. Prager, Denis
    (1998) Piece in Simon Wiesenthal, The Sunflower: On the Possibilities and Limits of Forgiveness. New York: Schocken Books.
    [Google Scholar]
  27. Peeters, Bert
    (Ed.) (2006) Semantic Primes and Universal Grammar: Empirical evidence from the Romance languages. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 10.1075/slcs.81
    https://doi.org/10.1075/slcs.81 [Google Scholar]
  28. Schuchardt, Hugo
    (1887) On Sound Laws: Against the Neogrammarians. InVennemann, Theo and Terence H. Wilbur (1972) Schuchardt, the Neogrammarians, and the Transformational Theory of Phonological Change; four essays. Frankfurt: Athenäum.
    [Google Scholar]
  29. Shaw, Benjamin
    (2018) Love in the Syriac New Testament. Language Studies: Aramaic Thoughts. Online at https://www.studylight.org/languagestudies/aramaicthoughts.html, accessed1 March 2018.
    [Google Scholar]
  30. Wierzbicka, Anna
    (1992) Semantics, Culture and Cognition: Universal Human Concepts in Culture-specific Configurations. New York: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  31. (1996) Semantics: Primes and universals. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  32. (2001) What Did Jesus Mean? Explaining the Sermon on the Mount and the Parables in Simple and Universal Human Concepts. New York: Oxford University Press. 10.1093/0195137337.001.0001
    https://doi.org/10.1093/0195137337.001.0001 [Google Scholar]
  33. (2014) Imprisoned in English: The Hazards of Using English as a Default Language. New York: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  34. (2017) W co wierzą chrześcijanie? Opowieść o Bogu i o ludziach [What Christians Believe: The Story of God and People]. Znak, Poland.
    [Google Scholar]
  35. (2018a) Talking about the universe in Minimal English: Teaching science through words that children understand. InCliff Goddard (ed.), Minimal English for a Global World: Improved Communication Using Fewer Words. Palgrave Macmillan. pp.169–200. 10.1007/978‑3‑319‑62512‑6_8
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-62512-6_8 [Google Scholar]
  36. Wierzbicka, A.
    (2018b), Speaking about God in Universal Words, Thinking about God outside English. InChilton, P., and Monkia Kopytowska, Religion, Language, and the Human MindNew York: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  37. Wierzbicka, Anna
    (2019) What Christians Believe: The Story of God and People in Minimal English. New York: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  38. Zwi Werblowsky, R. J. & Geoffrey Wigoder
    (eds.) (1997) The Oxford Dictionary of the Jewish Religion. New York: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  39. The Comprehensive Aramaic Lexicon. Online at cal.huc.edu/
    [Google Scholar]
  40. The Jewish Encyclopedia (1906) <www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/13548-shema, accessed18 June 2018.
    [Google Scholar]
http://instance.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1075/ijolc.18006.wie
Loading
/content/journals/10.1075/ijolc.18006.wie
Loading

Data & Media loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error