ellesieg (ellesieg) wrote in 1word1day,

Tuesday Word: monosemantic

Monosemantic, formed by slapping the prefix mono- (one) onto semantic (related to meaning), means having only one meaning. It is usually applied to words and phrases that fit this definition. I suppose that doesn't sound too impressive, but it is! Words can go through so many transformations and expansions over time that you can make yourself dizzy tracing all of the twists and turns from their earliest recorded sense to their modern one. Hurray for monosemantic words, the stalwarts of language! Though you have to wonder why they failed to evolve. Maybe they were left alone because they were too dull to bother with. Then again, maybe whoever coined them managed to get it right the first time, and why mess with perfection?
Tags: adjective, m, wordsmith: ellesieg

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