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Collection glosses

Module by: Joseph Grimes. E-mail the author

Summary: The approximate meaning of an entry in parallel word lists must be given in one language of scientific interchange, and may be given in two.

Figure 1: Two glossing languages, from the Collection panel of JG-SulSel12.
Figure 1 (Coll-Gloss.jpg)

In order to work with many languages at once, we need to choose one or two languages in which we are likely to publish our results. The glossing languages are used to identify the approximate meanings of words in the languages whose relationships we are studying.

Comparative phonology lines up words of similar meaning and similar form. A Wordcorr entry might consist of the words for "house" in twenty languages that might be related, for example, and another entry have in it the words for "horse" in those same languages. And it might turn out that in one of the languages the "house" word doesn't match, but the "shack" word matches the "house" words in the other languages.

Word lists are not dictionaries. They are imprecise about exactly what the words in them mean. And because the meanings of words change over time just as their forms do, what we need for comparison had better not exclude words that could have come from the same ancestral form as words in other languages that now mean something a little different.

With each glossing language name goes its Ethnologue code.

Note:

The codes that identify languages, both the languages of description (the glossing languages) and the languages being compared (the subject languages) have recently had some codes modified by international agreement. Verify codes against the Fifteenth Edition of the Ethnologue. As a quick clue, codes in capital letters, like the ones in Figure 1, are from the Fourteenth Edition or older. Currently valid codes are in lower case.

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Module to:

My Favorites (?)

'My Favorites' is a special kind of lens which you can use to bookmark modules and collections. 'My Favorites' can only be seen by you, and collections saved in 'My Favorites' can remember the last module you were on. You need an account to use 'My Favorites'.

| A lens I own (?)

Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

Any individual member, a community, or a respected organization.

What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

| External bookmarks