Dialect dictionaries and dictionary-making
In this paper, the author discusses issues of principle and of method concerning dialect dictionary making. A draft version of this paper has been commented on by a number of eminent Hungarian dialectologists with an expertise in the problems of regional lexicography. The final version presented here summarises the consensus reached with respect to what types of information are to be lexicographically represented, i.e. included, in synchronic dialect dictionaries compiled with scholarly objectives in mind. These are as follows: 1. Headword. 2. Label of type of dialect word (proper, formal, semantic, formal-semantic). 3. Dialectal form, realisation. 4. Indication of the synchronic social validity of the dialect word. 5. Part-of-speech label. 6. Specification of meaning. 7. Stylistic label. 8. Illustrative sentence. 9. Remarks on usage. 10. Ethnographic and historical comments, description. 11. Reference(s). Items 1 to 7 are to be obligatorily included in all entries, whereas items 8 to 11 are optional. The author provides a detailed discussion of these eleven types of information and possible ways of their representation (symbol, abbreviation, data listing, no marking). He concludes that the lexicographical updating of dialect dictionaries is very much on the agenda and is a prerequisite to increasing the possibilities of a linguistic exploitation of dialect dictionaries.
Nyelv és stílus
Some theoretical issues regarding the rhetorical figure of accumulation
The interpretation of the notion of accumulation and the definition of its subtypes are not quite clear in the literature on stylistics and rhetorics. Even within the same compendium, the term may occur in several distinct meanings. The present paper attempts to find answers to some of the problems arising in this field by examining and comparing some dominant definitions and typologies of the rhetorical figure of accumulation and by offering some conclusions. The author examines the meanings of the notion of accumulation in Lausberg’s rhetorics and in the Hungarian literature on stylistics and rhetorics, the place of accumulation within the system of rhetorics, the two main types of accumulation: coordinative and subordinative, as well as the relationships between the notions of congeries and accumulation, and those of enumeration and accumulation, respectively.
Nép és nyelv
Compounds involving names of birds in the terminology of botanics
This paper discusses Hungarian botanical terms involving the noun madár ‘bird’ and individual names of birds, going from domestic to wild fowls. The author emphasises word historical and word geographical aspects (the first attested occurrence of the plant name in written documents and regional variation respectively, but without mentioning dialectal variants) as well as the psychological background of naming habits.
The anterior constituent madár often expresses smallness, lightness, deviant amount. For plants that yield fruit, madár or madárkás ‘birdy’ means ‘consisting of small pieces’ (grapes, berries). But it may also allude to the habitat of wild fowl, meaning ‘(growing in a) field, meadow, forest’ or else to the fact that the fruit of the given plant serves as food for birds.
A nyelvtudomány műhelyéből
Remarks on the cognitive approach to language
The author introduces his paper by discussing the meaning of the adjective cognitive, summarising the essence of cognitivism, and defining the term cognitive science. He then goes on to discuss what are called cognitive abilities and tries to answer the question of how man obtains information about objective reality. One possible answer relates to the classical tradition based on Aristotelian views, referred to as the tradition of realism and objectivism. On the other hand, an alternative answer starts from the structure of human mind, rather than from the structure of objective reality. The paper discusses the problem area of modularity, an issue that divides linguists into two camps. The author presents Noam Chomsky’s views on the matter (“binding principle”, “rigidity principle”), and points out the differences between the two types of linguistic description, modular and non-modular.
The interpretation of the Old Hungarian ‘Lamentations of Mary’
The Old Hungarian ‘Lamentations of Mary’ (OHLM) is the oldest extant Hungarian poem, copied in about 1300 into a Latin codex. Its text is a translation/adaptation of a version of the poem or rather sequence beginning Planctus ante nescia... that was quite widespread in medieval Europe. The interpretation of OHLM has been a well-discussed topic in Hungarian philology; nevertheless, the explanation of a few words and phrases in it is still unsettled. The author presents his own interpretation here (obviously relying on earlier relevant results, too) and gives suggestions of possible interpretations concerning the debated points. First a formally less rigid interpretation is given, containing alternative solutions at places; then, a version aiming at reflecting even the versification of the original is supplied. Comments with respect to various points of the interpretation are given in footnotes.
Pronouns and substitution
The present paper deals with the two most important characteristics of the word class of pronouns: the issues of substitution and reference. First, it defines the nature of pronominal substitution; and then, it goes into details about the possibilities of the referential interpretation of pronouns, which are as follows: 1. deictic reference, 2. coreference, 3. set reference. The paper primarily seeks an answer to the question of how, across the various types of reference, the simple grammatical substitution corresponding to the basic pattern ‘pro-NP for NP’ is carried out. The paper tries to apply recent results of text linguistics and pragmatics, concerning pronouns, within the realm of descriptive grammar.
Russian lexical items in Die Fabrik des neuen Menschen by Rachmanowa
Most works by the emigré Russian writer Alja Rachmanowa were translated into Hungarian in the thirties and forties. The most widely known of these is Bécsi tejesasszony ‘Viennese Milkwoman’, the third part of her biographical tetralogy. Her single novel, entitled Die Fabrik des neuen Menschen, was published in Hungarian in 1936, translated by Marcellné Benedek, under the title Irgalom ‘Mercy’.
The purpose of this paper is to show the lexical peculiarity of that novel: the occurrence and use of nonequivalent lexemes in it. Those words are inserted into the text in their original (Russian) form but spelt according to the German orthography; their meanings are given in short footnotes in the majority of cases, but there is a residue that occurs without a footnote or intratextual Orosz nyelvi elemek Rachmanowa Die Fabrik des neuen Menschen cím) m)vében 499 explanation. The latter group of cases is presumably accounted for by the fact that both German and Hungarian readers were familiar with the language of nineteenth-century Russian literature. However, the lack of semantisation is not based on uniform principles throughout.
Words supplied with a footnote fall into two categories: one contains the real nonequivalent items, the other comprises the apparently gratuitously used Russian lexical items. It is to be noted though that the latter are probably there to create a kind of couleur locale.
As far as the Hungarian translation is concerned, the translator sometimes explains such words within the text, but explanations that are not given in the original are not supplied in the Hungarian text, either. In other cases, the item concerned is simply translated into Hungarian.
W. Kasack describes the language of this novel as “somewhat idiosyncratic German” (“ein etwas eigenwilliges Deutsch”). On the basis of an analysis of Die Fabrik des neuen Menschen (and other books by Rachmanowa) it can be justly claimed that both the original text and its Hungarian translation are unique in the world literature with respect to the large amount of foreign lexical items occurring in them.
Szó- és szólásmagyarázatok
A Nyelvőr hírei
A Nyelvőr postájából