Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Carole P. Hines
The verb hold is normally presumed to be highly polysemous; dictionaries ascribe to it several senses and sub-senses. This treatment is supported by the polysemous bias in current semantic research. In this thesis, I claim that hold is monosemic, with ascribed meanings resulting from pragmatic modulation. My treatment of hold is based on Charles Ruhl's work with monosemy in his book On Monosemy: A Study in Linguistic Semantics.
This study isolates hold's constant semantic contribution throughout 250 diverse example sentences. I claim that hold: (1) presupposes a sequence, and then (2) suspends the sequence.
After an introduction and a chapter on current treatments of hold, I present simple transitives (chapter 3) and then a look at objects modified by adjectives and the possibility of small clauses (chapter 4). Also covered are example sentences containing phrasal verbs (chapter 5) and idioms (chapter 6). A sampling of prepositional phrases and their impact on hold is presented in chapters 7 and 8.
Camp, Amy D..
"Hold as a Monosemic Verb"
(1995). Master of Arts (MA), Thesis, English, Old Dominion University, DOI: 10.25777/14fj-wh37