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Thread: synonym

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    #1

    synonym

    Dear teachers,

    I amd reading an article on vocabulary and I get confused by terms synonyms and near-synonyms.
    For example, the article reads:
    error, mistake, slip, and blunder are near-synonyms.
    I used to think they are synonyms. Could you please explain the difference between synonyms and near-synonyms?

    Looking forward to hearing from you.
    Thank you in advance.

    Jiang

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    #2

    Re: synonym

    Synonyms: Words having the same or nearly the same meaning.
    Near Synonyms: Words having a somewhat similar meaning.

    I have never heard of a "near-synonym" until I read your question.

    http://help.adobe.com/en_US/InCopy/6...b3f-7251a.html

    Apparently, the above thesaurus has divided its look-up words into the two categories.
    Personally, I wouldn't bother. English is hard enough without adding this sort of dribble.

    John
    Last edited by JohnParis; 06-Nov-2011 at 12:26. Reason: spacing

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    #3

    Re: synonym

    I have found the expression 'near-synonym' useful. When I am using it, I am saying to the learners that the words concerned having a fairly similar meaning, and may in certain contexts be used interchangeably; they are, however, not exact synonyms, of which there are few in English.

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    #4

    Re: synonym

    Hi JohnParis,

    Thank you very much for your help. I shall surf the website you provided.
    I don't know why there isn't "post reply" so I have to "quote".

    Jiang

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnParis View Post
    Synonyms: Words having the same or nearly the same meaning.
    Near Synonyms: Words having a somewhat similar meaning.

    I have never heard of a "near-synonym" until I read your question.

    Adobe InCopy CS4 * Using the thesaurus

    Apparently, the above thesaurus has divided its look-up words into the two categories.
    Personally, I wouldn't bother. English is hard enough without adding this sort of dribble.

    John

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    #5

    Re: synonym

    Hi 5jj,

    Thank you very much for your explanation. But they are hard.
    I don't know why there is not "post reply" so I have to use "quote".

    Jiang

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    I have found the expression 'near-synonym' useful. When I am using it, I am saying to the learners that the words concerned having a fairly similar meaning, and may in certain contexts be used interchangeably; they are, however, not exact synonyms, of which there are few in English.

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    #6

    Re: synonym

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    I have found the expression 'near-synonym' useful. When I am using it, I am saying to the learners that the words concerned having a fairly similar meaning, and may in certain contexts be used interchangeably; they are, however, not exact synonyms, of which there are few in English.
    Yes, there are few exact synonyms in English. Using 'near-synonym' as an expression may be useful, but entrenching it as a formal term is fraught with complications.

    syn·o·nym 1. A word having the same or nearly the same meaning as another word or other words in a language.
    http://www.thefreedictionary.com/synonym
    'Synonym' already subsumes 'near synonym' in meaning. They are synonyms, but could also be described as near-synonyms.

    I'd be happier if students started with the premise that there are no exact synonyms or interchangeable words, rather than having them believe there are synonyms and near-synonyms.

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    #7

    Re: synonym

    Hi Raymott,

    Thank you verymuch for your help. Now I see.

    Jiang

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    #8

    Re: synonym

    Quote Originally Posted by jiang View Post
    I don't know why there is not "post reply" so I have to use "quote"
    There is a 'Post Reply' button, immediately after the last post.

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    #9

    Re: synonym

    Hi 5jj,

    What confuses me is sometimes there is sometimes there isn't. Next time when there isn't I shall look for it the way you told me.


    Jiang

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    #10

    Re: synonym

    If you have to use the Quote button, you can always delete the quoted words.

    Rover

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