- the branch of linguistics concerned with the nature, the structure, and the development and changes of the meanings of speech forms, or with contextual meaning
- the branch of semiotics dealing with relationships of signs and symbols to the things to which they refer, or with referential meaning
- the relationships between signs and symbols and the concepts, feelings, etc. associated with them in the minds of their interpreters; notional meaning
- loosely deliberate distortion or twisting of meaning, as in some types of advertising, propaganda, etc.
Origin: from semantic, based on French sémantique
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
noun (used with a sing. or pl. verb)
- Linguistics The study or science of meaning in language.
- Linguistics The study of relationships between signs and symbols and what they represent. Also called semasiology.
- The meaning or the interpretation of a word, sentence, or other language form: We're basically agreed; let's not quibble over semantics.
semantics - Computer Definition
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semantics - Cultural Definition
The scientific or philosophical study of the relations of words and their meanings.
- Semantics is commonly used to refer to a trivial point or distinction that revolves around mere words rather than significant issues: “To argue whether the medication killed the patient or contributed to her death is to argue over semantics.”
semantics - Medical Definition
- The study or science of meaning in language forms.
- The study of the relationships between various signs and symbols and what they represent.