One Zoonym, Two Parents: Mendele’s Phono-Semantic Matching of Animal Terms, and Later Developments of Lexical Confluence in Modern Hebrew Zoonymy

  • Ephraim Nissan
  • Ghil‘ad Zuckermann
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8003)

Abstract

In this study, we sift through the Hebrew animal names neologised by Abramowitsch (1866) in his natural history of birds. We identify and discuss a few such coinages of his which exhibit folk-etymological nativisation, by phono-semantic matching. Moreover, we trace occurrences of application of devices of lexical conflation by covert borrowing also in Hebrew zoonyms coined more recently than in Abramowitsch’s Natural History. Studying the latter’s neologised animal names is important because it illustrates a phenomenon (lexical conflation as a way to nativise loanwords) which has occurred in several modernised languages, and because Abramowitsch’s work was at a time when there arose modernisers also for other languages.

Keywords

Lexicon Terminology Neologisms Zoonyms (animal names) Bird names Hebrew phono-semantic matching punning Shalom Ya’akov Abramowitsch ([Sholem Yankev Abramovich] = Mendele Mokher Sfarim) Aardvark (Orycteropus aferDodo (Raphus cucullatusHamster (CricetidaeWater Rail (Rallus aquaticus

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ephraim Nissan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ghil‘ad Zuckermann
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Computing, Goldsmiths’ CollegeUniversity of LondonLondonEngland, U.K.
  2. 2.Centre for Jewish StudiesUniversity of ManchesterManchesterEngland
  3. 3.Linguistics and Endangered Languages, School of HumanitiesThe University of AdelaideAdelaideAustralia
  4. 4.Distinguished Visiting Professor and Oriental Scholar at the Institute of Linguistic StudiesShanghai International Studies UniversityChina

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