what makes certain syonyoms treated differently?

Dec 2014
557
United States
#1
Late is less offensive than dead, antithesis is viewed as more complex and forceful than opposite, and certain words are considered vulgar while another synonym is totally acceptable. Many profanities have synonyms that are not viewed as profanity.
 
Last edited:

Jake10

Ad Honoris
Oct 2010
11,960
Canada
#2
The meanings of words are never absolute. There is a level of ambiguity in language, which makes meanings of words change depending on the frequency of social usage, famous quotes, influential speakers and trends in culture. Another factor has to do with the number of syllables a word has. For instance. "Get" and "obtain" are synonyms, but get has only one syllable, so it is more commonly used by children and people trying to say something quickly. Obtain has two syllables, so it tends to be used in more formal contexts. While the meaning is the same, the use of each word can be used to express the level of formality of the sentence. The number of syllables also influences the frequency of social use, which is why we often hear the word "love" and only occasionally hear the word "enamored" used. When the frequency of social usage is low, fewer people are familiar with it, which increases the level of ambiguity. Words that have higher levels of ambiguity tend to be found more in artistic genres such as poetry, while words that are more precise tend to be used in technical or scientific genres. The genres they appear in, influences the meanings that synonyms have, which is where the area of cultural trends comes into play.
 
Last edited:
Dec 2014
557
United States
#3
The meanings of words are never absolute. There is a level of ambiguity in language, which makes meanings of words change depending on the frequency of social usage, famous quotes, influential speakers and trends in culture. Another factor has to do with the number of syllables a word has. For instance. "Get" and "obtain" are synonyms, but get has only one syllable, so it is more commonly used by children and people trying to say something quickly. Obtain has two syllables, so it tends to be used in more formal contexts. While the meaning is the same, the use of each word can be used to express the level of formality of the sentence. The number of syllables also influences the frequency of social use, which is why we often hear the word "love" and only occasionally hear the word "enamored" used. When the frequency of social usage is low, fewer people are familiar with it, which increases the level of ambiguity. Words that have higher levels of ambiguity tend to be found more in artistic genres such as poetry, while words that are more precise tend to be used in technical or scientific genres. The genres they appear in, influences the meanings that synonyms have, which is where the area of social trends comes into play.
https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/137698/swear-words-and-fricatives-plosives
 

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