It makes sense to use the term semantic relations to indicate relations defined by semantic paradigms. Semantic relations is sometimes used to denote phrasal or sentential relations such as paraphrase, entailment, and contradiction but here it should be understood to mean ‘paradigmatic semantic relations among words’. 1. Properties of semantic relations: a. productivity: new relational links among words can be generated (e.g.: the productivity of synonymy is clearly observable; if we invent a new word that represents the same thing tha an existing word in the language represents, then the new word is automatically a synonym of the older word) b. binarity: some relations relate only pairs of words, although larger sets of words may be semantically available for the relation (e.g., black/white rather than black/gray/white); c. variability: a particular word is related to varies according to which sense of the word is used and the context in which it is used (one reason for this fact is that words are polysemous, and different senses of a single word may require different synonyms and antonyms) d. prototypicality and canonicity: some word sets better exemplify a relation than others, and some word sets (especially some antonym pairs) seem to have special status as canonical examples of a relation (not only is hot the best antonym for cold, but the pair hot/cold may be also perceived as a better antonym pair than other pair, like cruel/kind) e. semi-semanticity: semantic properties of words are not the only factors at work in relating words and judging semantic relations (one non-semantic factor is grammatical category, or part of speech; for instance, although happy and joy denote nearly the
same emotional state, they are not good synonyms because one is an adjective and the other is a noun) f. uncountability: the number of semantic relation types is not objectively determinable; g. predictability: relations among words adhere to general patterns, indicating that semantic relations are rule governed; h. universality: the same semantic relations are relevant to the description of any language’s lexicon;
2. Synonymy A synonymy set includes only word-concepts that have all the same contextually relevant properties, but differ in form. Thus synonymy relies on our knowledge about words. Deriving synonym relations involves two stages: generating synonym candidates and evaluating the candidates. Jansen, de Boeck, and vander Steene have shown that abililty in the generation task correlates with verbal fluency, while ability in evaluation task is related to language comprehension ability.