Encyclopedia of ancient greek language and linguistics, Volume 3 : 275-278 (2014)
[ES] En este trabajo se define el cambio semántico, se analizan las causas de que se produzca y se especifican sus tipos en el griego antiguo.[EN] Semantic change refers to the alteration of the relationship between a given word and the set of referents such a word may denote. Changes in the meaning conveyed by words can affect their lexemes and their morphemes, so we find semantic shifts in both lexical and grammatical notions. Conventionally, semantic change refers to developments in the meaning conveyed by lexemes, while changes in the meaning of morphemes are the concern of historical morphology and morphosyntax. Although nothing comparable to sound laws in the area of historical phonology and analogy in the field of morphology has been found so far, advances have been made in the study of the causes and types of semantic change produced in individual words and, particularly, in the acquisition of new meanings or in the emergence of new terms. Still, how the change in one word affects other words from the same semantic domain and the language as a whole has hardly been studied. Ancient Greek experienced semantic changes throughout its history, but if we compare it to other languages of the same environment, like Latin, we can see a considerable degree of continuity.