Volume 20, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0257-3784
  • E-ISSN: 2212-9731



This paper explores the semantic features of Korean ideophones in newspaper headlines. This paper argues that (i) there is a strong relationship between the language-specific sound symbolic meanings – dark and light vowel polarity and the meanings of ideophones in newspaper headlines and event descriptions; (ii) ideophones are much more common in articles about the financial issues; (iii) ideophones which exhibit vowel alternation go through different semantic extension routes to those of other ideophones. The findings of the paper suggest that Korean ideophones have been lexically highly conventionalized and integrated into the language system.

Available under the CC BY-NC 4.0 license.

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