Prototype‏ [Noun.]


‘The idea of “the characteristic instance” of a category is know as a prototype. The concept of a prototype helps explain the meaning of certain words, like bird, not in terms of component features (e.g. “has feathers,” “has wings”), but in terms of resemblance to the clearest example. […]

Given the category label furniture, we are quick to recognise chair as a better example than bench or stool. […] However, this is one area where individual experience can lead to substantial variation in interpretation and people may disagree over the categorisation of a word like avocado or tomato as fruit or vegetable.’

– Yule, G. 1985. The Study of Language Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press (2010) p. 119

Hyponym‏ [Noun.]


‘When the meaning of the one form is included in the meaning of the another, the relationship is described as hyponymy. […] The concept of “inclusion” involved in this relationship is the idea that if an object is a rose, then it is necessarily a flower, so the meaning of flower is included in the meaning of rose. Or, rose is a hyponym of flower.
[…] We can also say that two or more words that share the same superordinate term are co-hyponyms.’

– Yule, G. 1985. The Study of Language Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press (2010) p. 118-119

Synonym‏ [Noun.]


‘Two or more words with very closely related meanings are called synonyms. […] We should keep in mind that the idea of “sameness” of meaning used in discussing synonymy is not necessarily “total sameness.” There are many occasions when one word is appropriate in a sentence, but its synonym would be odd.”

– Yule, G. 1985. The Study of Language Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press (2010) p. 117