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Idioms in Syrian Arabic: A First Approach towards a Lexico-Semantic and Grammatical Analysis

Carmen Berlinches Ramos

Pages 17 - 43


Idioms are present at all levels of our daily communication. They are inherent in a language and essential for its understanding. Compositionality, conventionality, and relative fixedness are among their key properties.

The semantic and grammatical behavior of idiomatic expressions in Syrian Arabic have yet to be investigated. This paper is a prolegomenon to such a study. It is based on a corpus of around four hundred tokens taken from Syrian television series broadcast during the past decade.

First, this paper specifies the most frequent lexical items that appear in the data and analyze their various meanings in their collocations. Figures of speech such as metaphor and metonymy are discussed. The second part of the paper deals with various distinctive morphological and syntactic features.

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