analogy


analogy
analogy
1. In language analogy is the process by which the use of words follows precedents set by other words without going through all the stages that produced those precedents. This is a fundamental aspect of the way languages develop, and applies to all aspects of usage, including word-formation, spelling, inflection, meaning, collocation, and pronunciation. For example, the noun starvation (18c) was formed on the analogy of other words such as vexation (15c); the dialect and AmE past form dove (from dive) was formed on the analogy of strove (from strive); the pronunciation of controversy on the first or second syllable is by analogy with types represented respectively by matrimony and monotony. The formation seascape (and later skyscape and waterscape) was modelled on landscape, workaholic on alcoholic, and sexist (and later ageist and others) on racist. Software (in computing) was formed on the analogy of hardware, and later shareware; more recently we have seen the invention of terms for more intrusive and sinister phenomena such as adware and malware.
2. Sometimes false analogies come into play, leading to uses that either appear erroneous (as sometimes in the speech of children) or prevail despite the falseness of the analogy (as with alright, modelled on altogether). More often, the role of analogy is overlooked by those who criticize aspects of usage (such as the sentence adverb hopefully) in isolation.

Modern English usage. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Analogy — is both the cognitive process of transferring information from a particular subject (the analogue or source) to another particular subject (the target), and a linguistic expression corresponding to such a process. In a narrower sense, analogy is… …   Wikipedia

  • Analogy — • A philosophical term used to designate, first, a property of things; secondly, a process of reasoning Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Analogy     Analogy      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • analogy — 1 *likeness, similitude, resemblance, similarity, affinity 2 Analogy, simile, metaphor designate a comparison between things essentially or generically different but strikingly alike in one or more pertinent aspects. Analogy is the general term… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • Analogy — A*nal o*gy, n.; pl. {Analogies}. [L. analogia, Gr. ?, fr. ?: cf. F. analogie. See {Analogous}.] 1. A resemblance of relations; an agreement or likeness between things in some circumstances or effects, when the things are otherwise entirely… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • analogy — I noun affinity, agreement, close relation, close resemblance, common feature, comparability, comparison, congruity, correlation, correspondence, equivalence, homology, like quality, likeness, logical relation, parallel relation, parallelism,… …   Law dictionary

  • analogy — [ə nal′ə jē] n. pl. analogies [ME & OFr analogie < L analogia < Gr, proportion < analogos, in due ratio < ana , according to + logos, word, reckoning: see LOGIC] 1. similarity in some respects between things otherwise unlike; partial… …   English World dictionary

  • analogy — analogy. См. аналогия. (Источник: «Англо русский толковый словарь генетических терминов». Арефьев В.А., Лисовенко Л.А., Москва: Изд во ВНИРО, 1995 г.) …   Молекулярная биология и генетика. Толковый словарь.

  • analogy — (n.) 1540s (perhaps early 15c.), from O.Fr. analogie or directly from L. analogia, from Gk. analogia proportion, from ana upon, according to (see ANA (Cf. ana )) + logos ratio, also word, speech, reckoning (see LOGOS (Cf. logos)). A mathematical… …   Etymology dictionary

  • analogy — [n] agreement, similarity affinity, alikeness, comparison, correlation, correspondence, equivalence, homology, likeness, metaphor, parallel, relation, relationship, resemblance, semblance, simile, similitude; concepts 278,670 Ant. disagreement,… …   New thesaurus

  • analogy — ► NOUN (pl. analogies) 1) a comparison between one thing and another made to explain or clarify. 2) a correspondence or partial similarity. DERIVATIVES analogical adjective …   English terms dictionary