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Old 01-14-2010, 12:55 PM
Bisected8 Bisected8 is offline
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Is there a word for words which describe themselves?

For example "oxymoron" is an oxymoron (since it comes from the greek words "Oxy" meaning sharp and "moron" meaning blunt. "Tautology" is a tautology ("Something which is true is true"). etc.

Is there a word to describe words that fit their own definition? For that matter are there related words for ones that don't?
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Old 01-14-2010, 12:58 PM
J Cubed J Cubed is offline
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autonym
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Old 01-14-2010, 01:03 PM
Bisected8 Bisected8 is offline
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I thought it would be something like that. Thanks.
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Old 01-14-2010, 02:06 PM
Spectre of Pithecanthropus Spectre of Pithecanthropus is online now
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As an adjective for such words you can say self-referential. One of my favorite self-referential words, IIRC, comes up in Douglas Hofstadter's Gödel, Escher, Bach--"awkwardnessfull".
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Old 01-14-2010, 02:39 PM
friedo friedo is offline
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My favorite example is sesquipedalian.

My second favorite example is anapest.
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Old 01-14-2010, 02:55 PM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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Onomatopoeia might also fit this description - words like "bang" and "woof" where the word is also the sound associated with the word.
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Old 01-14-2010, 04:31 PM
Bisected8 Bisected8 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cat Whisperer View Post
Onomatopoeia might also fit this description - words like "bang" and "woof" where the word is also the sound associated with the word.
That would be a hyponym of what I was after, yes.
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Old 01-14-2010, 08:38 PM
Shamozzle Shamozzle is offline
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I thought that the term "homological" described a word that was true of itself and the term "heterological" described a word that was not true of itself.

For example, the word "short" is homological whereas the word "monosyllabic" is heterological.

Here's a fun question: Is the word "heterological" homological or heterological?
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