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The meaning of "word"

The definition of "word" is not clear.

A unit of meaning, an expression of a single concept....

A word in written English — as in many other languages — is a unit of text between spaces.

Of course, the distinction between "word" and "phrase" is occasionally indistinct. This can be especially true where the use or non-use of the hyphen is ambiguous. (I like the hyphen, myself, and enjoy linking "phrase-words" by its function.)

The word "word" seems to come rather intact from the Proto-Indo-European* The basis of all Continental tongues (amongst others,) with exception of Basque and Finno-Hungarian. [Finnish, Estonian, Hungarian]

... And, I guess that's as far as I've developed the idea. Jeez, I hope I didn't link this page from anywhere visible.

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* Proto-Indo-European is the language family from which most European and most Indian languages derive.

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Return to "Proto-Indo-European"