언어학과 언어교육분야의 연구를 통한 학문의 질적 향상과 국내외 회원 및 학회간 학술 교류와 친목을 도모
언어학연구, Vol.25 no.2 (2020)
Semantic transparency of noun-noun compounds in Chinese and English : A case of ‘ji(机)’ and ‘machine’
This case study examined the degree of the perceived semantic transparency of noun-noun compounds with the same word family: Chinese 'ji(机)' and its English equivalence 'machine'. The result indicated that compounds with ’machine‘ right-headed were dominant in number compared with the left-headed ones while compounds with ’ji(机)’ in both positions maintained opacity. It is argued that the naming of the new creations or inventions brought about more semantically transparent noun-noun compounds in English. By contrast, the stability and limitedness of Chinese characters facilitated the meaning extension or shift in compounding, thus making the Chinese noun-noun compounds more semantically opaque via metonymy and metaphor.