Metaphor and the Historical Evolution of Conceptual Mapping by Richard Trim

By Richard Trim

Will we use metaphors that existed enormous quantities of years in the past? Why do a little die out and do they ever get back? Why are a few metaphors merely utilized by only a few humans? Richard Trim investigates such concerns via studying which significant points give a contribution in the direction of the historic evolution of metaphor. He proposes that they contain simple conceptualization procedures within the type of sensory and physiological belief, common traits in cognition, cultural good points, the variety of those that use a figurative expression, the topic concerned, in addition to their interface with language itself. by means of evaluating very assorted fields corresponding to the feelings, color symbolism and political statements within the background of struggle rhetoric, the writer means that some of these points consistently forge paths inside an international version of evolution.

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This was originally a Greek cross with arms narrowing towards its centre and with two points at each extremity. It became the emblem of the Knights of St John of Jerusalem, a religious order founded in 1048 to guard and entertain pilgrims at the Holy Sepulchre at Jerusalem. This cross has lent itself to metonymic extension in literary works in English, with reference to the reaping arms of a harvesting machine in the nineteenth century: But of all ruddy things that morning the brightest were two broad arms of painted wood, which rose from the margin of a yellow cornfield hard by Marlott village.

With this information, the ‘fine pate full of fine dirt’ becomes clear to a modern English reader. However, further knowledge is required concerning ‘fine of his fines’ in which the word can mean both ‘outcome’ and ‘legal action’. ’ The multiple punning of ‘fine’ has thus led to ironic mapping in, for example, the ‘fine dirt’ concept. The examples discussed above are indeed evidence for the fact that the different structures in a language can have a certain amount of influence, albeit limited, on conceptual mapping.

The word ‘swastika’ has not always been in use in English. In fact, until 1871, the Greek term gammadion was used. This derives from the Greek letter gamma, ‘ ’, denoting ‘G’. It can be seen that the appearance of this letter is analogous to the hooked lines on the swastika cross. The interface of this term has therefore gone through some interesting changes. Not only has the sign changed its form of conceptual representation in the Saussurean ‘signifier/signified’ relationship, that is, GOOD LUCK > NATIONAL SOCIALISM, it has also undergone a double form of mutation due to the changing lexemes gammadion > swastika.

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