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  1. Fame's Avatar
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    #1

    polysemy and homonymy

    I know that polysemy refers to a word that has two or more similar meanings. For e.g. in 1) “My friend lives at the foot of the mountains.” 2) “One of her sandals felt too tight for her foot.” ‘Foot’ in 1) refers to the bottom part of the mountains and in 2) the bottom part of the leg. And homonymy is the relation between two words that are spelled the same way but differ in meaning or the relation between two words that are pronounced the same way but differ in meaning.

    But I'm not sure what is similar between the two. Any ideas?

  2. Fame's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: polysemy and homonymy

    Quote Originally Posted by Fame View Post
    I know that polysemy refers to a word that has two or more similar meanings. For e.g. in 1) “My friend lives at the foot of the mountains.” 2) “One of her sandals felt too tight for her foot.” ‘Foot’ in 1) refers to the bottom part of the mountains and in 2) the bottom part of the leg. And homonymy is the relation between two words that are spelled the same way but differ in meaning or the relation between two words that are pronounced the same way but differ in meaning.

    But I'm not sure what is similar between the two. Any ideas?
    Can I say the words in bold are cases of polysemy because they have more than one meaning?
    a i) Eastern Europe was for many years behind the Iron Curtain.
    ii) This striped curtain doesn’t match the wallpaper at all.
    b i) My left foot really aches.
    ii) The climb begins at the foot of the hill.
    c i) If it stops working, just give it a tap.
    ii) To control the water supply you’ll need to fit a tap.

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