Yesterday’s idioms today: a corpus linguistic analysis of Bible idioms.

By November 17, 2016,
AuthorLaura Pinnavaia
TitleYesterday’s idioms today: a corpus linguistic analysis of Bible idioms.
AbstractMany of the idioms used in English stem from the Bible. There they were originally coined and used to announce God’s word, to facilitate the understanding of it, and to capture the ineffable and unsaid. Nowadays with newly derived and synchronic meanings, they can be employed in a similar fashion in contexts that are not just religious. It is the simultaneous existence of the two metaphoric readings – the historic and the synchronic – that makes Bible idioms particularly rich and fascinating linguistic tools worthy of study. This article analyses a series of twenty-five Bible idioms in contemporary English, as represented by the British National Corpus. While the examination provides data as to the frequency and distribution of the idioms in different texts, particular attention is placed upon their communicative functions in discourse in order to try and individuate three pragmatic types of Bible idiom.
SessionCollocations, phraseology and idioms
Keywordsidioms, corpus linguistics, pragmatic meaning.
author = {Laura Pinnavaia},
title = {Yesterday’s idioms today: a corpus linguistic analysis of Bible idioms.},
pages = {701--714},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the 15th EURALEX International Congress},
year = {2012},
month = {aug},
date = {7-11},
address = {Oslo,Norway},
editor = {Ruth Vatvedt Fjeld and Julie Matilde Torjusen},
publisher = {Department of Linguistics and Scandinavian Studies, University of Oslo},
isbn = {978-82-303-2228-4},