Denotation

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Not to be confused with detonation.

Denotation is a translation of a sign to its meaning, precisely to its literal meaning, more or less like dictionaries try to define it. Denotation is sometimes contrasted to connotation, which translates a sign to its associated meanings.

In semiotics[edit]

In logic, linguistics and semiotics, the denotation of a word or phrase is a part of its meaning; however, the part referred to varies by context:

  • In grammar and literary theory, the literal meaning or "dictionary definition" of a term, devoid of emotion, attitude, and color.
  • In semiotics, the surface or literal meaning of a signifier.
  • In logic, formal semantics and parts of linguistics, the extension of a term.

In other fields[edit]

Examples[edit]

Example one.

The denotation of this example is a red rose with a green stem. The connotation is that it is a symbol of passion and love – this is what the rose represents.

Example two.

The denotation is a brown cross. The connotation is a symbol of religion, according to the media connotation. However, to be more specific this is a symbol of Christianity.

Example seven .

The denotation is a representation of a cartoon heart. The connotation is a symbol of love and affection.

External links[edit]