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What is reference?



Here are two senses for reference:

  1. Reference is the symbolic relationship that a linguistic expression has with the concrete object or abstraction it represents.
  2. Reference is the relationship of one linguistic expression to another, in which one provides the information necessary to interpret the other.

Here is an example of reference:

  • A pronoun refers to the noun antecedent that is used to interpret it.
  • Kinds
      Here are some kinds of reference:
      A reference is a kind of

    Hartmann and Stork 1972 193


    Crystal 1985 259–260


    Pei and Gaynor 1954 184

    Context for this page:

    Go to SIL home page This page is an extract from the LinguaLinks Library, Version 5.0 published on CD-ROM by SIL International, 2003. [Ordering information.]

    Page content last modified: 5 January 2004

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