In language, a word is the smallest element that may be uttered in isolation with semantic or pragmatic content (with literal or practical meaning). This contrasts with a morpheme, which is the smallest unit of meaning but will not necessarily stand on its own. A word may consist of a single morpheme (for example: oh!, rock, red, quick, run, expect), or several (rocks, redness, quickly, running, unexpected), whereas a morpheme may not be able to stand on its own as a word (in the words just mentioned, these are -s, -ness, -ly, -ing, un-, -ed). A complex word will typically include a root and one or more affixes (rock-s, red-ness, quick-ly, run-ning, un-expect-ed), or more than one root in a compound (black-board, rat-race). Words can be put together to build larger elements of language, such as phrases (a red rock), clauses (I threw a rock), and sentences (He threw a rock too but he missed).
Words are merely Symbols which represents the intended meaning behined, which can be known from the context. The term word may refer to a spoken word or to a written word, or sometimes to the abstract concept behind either. Spoken words are made up of units of sound called phonemes, and written words of symbols called graphemes, such as the letters of the English alphabet.
Famous quotes containing the word word:
“Our aversion to lying is commonly a secret ambition to make what we say considerable, and have every word received with a religious respect.”
—François, Duc De La Rochefoucauld (16131680)
“A word does not frighten the man who, in acting, feels no fear.”
—Sophocles (497406/5 B.C.)
“Must! Is must a word to be addressed to princes? Little man, little man! thy father, if he had been alive, durst not have used that word.”
—Elizabeth I (15331603)