[Milton-L] language question

Horace Jeffery Hodges jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
Fri Feb 10 13:25:45 EST 2006


The word "cleave" comes from two different roots. See:

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/cleave

http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=cleave

Unfortunately, I can't recall the linguistic term for
this, but two words have converged in sound, i.e.,
"cleave," while retaining opposite meanings.

In Coptic, there's the example of "E2PAI"
[transliterated "ehrai"], which means both "up" and
"down." Again, two words have converged in sound while
retaining opposite meanings.

Jeffery Hodges

--- Anita Sherman <asherm at american.edu> wrote:

Learned friends:
   Please help me remember what (I think) I once knew.
 What is it about the evolution of the English
language that results in certain words--e.g.
"cleave"--having antithetical meanings?  Is there a
term of art for these kinds of words?
   Thank you in advance for your help,
Anita Sherman

University Degrees:

Ph.D., History, U.C. Berkeley
(Doctoral Thesis: "Food as Synecdoche in John's Gospel and Gnostic Texts")
M.A., History of Science, U.C. Berkeley
B.A., English Language and Literature, Baylor University

Email Address:

jefferyhodges at yahoo.com

Blog:

http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/

Office Address:

Assistant Professor Horace Jeffery Hodges
Department of English Language and Literature
Korea University
136-701 Anam-dong, Seongbuk-gu
Seoul
South Korea

Home Address:

Dr. Sun-Ae Hwang and Dr. Horace Jeffery Hodges
Sehan Apt. 102-2302
Sinnae-dong 795
Jungrang-gu
Seoul 131-770
South Korea


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