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Lexis And Structure: Meaning, Categories, Examples

Lexis is the words and phrases in a language. Whereas, structure is the combination and arrangements of words to form sentences. Lexis And Structure

Lexis And Structure


Lexis And Structure




Lexis And Structure — This article is a comprehensive discussion on the topic, Lexis And Structure, which is one of most important topic that one would likely come across especially as a student of English and Literary Studies. 

Further, this article will consider the meaning of lexis and structure, types of lexis, examples of lexis and structure and how they help to form an error free sentence, how to answer Lexis and structure in jamb.

What Is Lexis And Structure?


 Lexis Meaning— Lexis is the area of English language where sentences are predicated on a system of relationships between words in a language and the meanings that they make.

The word 'lexical' is derived from the Latin word 'Lexis' which means pertaining to or relating to words. Thus, Lexis meaning can also be referred to as the interaction of meanings between the vocabulary or words of a language.

These words in a language are referred to as lexical items.

On the other hand, Structure is the arrangement of words in an orderly manner by combining these words (lexical items) according to the established rules of a language (structure).

In simpler terms, Lexis is the set of words and phrases in a language. Whereas structure is the combination and arrangement of these words to form meaningful sentences.

Basically, the understanding of lexis and structure helps to have a deep and sound knowledge and understanding of the English phrases and words, as well as how to easily combine these words in a logical order and form meaning sentences.

Thus, forming a meaningful sentence in language is predicated on your usage of lexis and structure.

Now, let us consider the other aspects of lexis and structure.

Types Of Lexis


In English Language, the seven types of lexis are synonyms, antonyms, hyponymy, homonymy, polysemy, diction, and collocation.

Let us consider each category.

  • Synonyms

Synonyms is the lexical relations exiting between words with very closely related meanings. They are also identifiable on the basis that they can be easily substituted; one for the other, in sentences.

Synonyms can also be referred to as the word with the sameness of meaning. Thus, words which can be substituted for each other are said to be synonymous.

Examples of synonyms are:

Word: Walk
Synonyms: Stroll, Trudge, Saunter, Tramp
Meaning: To walk slowly or in a leisurely way.

Word: Fragile
Synonyms: Delicate, Brittle, Breakable
Meaning: Easily broken or capable of being broken easily.

However, synonyms may differ in terms of contextual suitability, formal and informal usages, dialects, registers, connotation as well as emotive and evaluative meanings. For instance, autumn and fall have the same meaning but differ in terms of dialectal use some 'fall' is used in United States but 'autumn' is used in Britain.

  • Antonyms

Antonyms is the opposite of synonyms. It refers to the opposite meaning of words.

Antonyms describes the relationship between two words where one word in pair is the antithesis of the other. Antonymous pairs are often used to explain contrastive concepts or opposing ideas.

Antonyms can be categorized into three subgroups. They are:

1. Gradable antonyms which allows for comparison in their difference in terms of degree. Examples of gradable antonyms are hot/cold and big/small.

2. Non-Gradable antonyms that cannot be used in comparative constructions. Examples of non-gradable antonyms are married/single and pass/fail

3. Relational or Converse antonyms are mutually dependent on each other for their meaning; they show a reverse relationship. Examples of relational antonyms are doctor/patient and teacher/student

  • Hyponymy

Another category of lexis is hyponymy where the meaning of one word encompasses the meaning of another. They are words whose meanings are part of a more general terms called "The Hypernym"

Examples of hyponymy are  bird/eagle and fruit/orange.

  • Homonymy

Homonymy is the relationship that holds between two lexemes that have the same form but unrelated meanings. In other words, homonymy is the relations between word with identical forms but different meanings.

They can either be words that same phonetic form or the same orthographic form but different meanings.

Example of homonymy is:

Homonymy: Tail, Tale.
Meanings: Tail is the part of an animal that extends beyond the rest of the body. Whereas, Tale is a fictitious story.

  • Polysemy

This category of lexis has to deal with words which can be used to express different meanings. Such difference may be subtle or obvious.

Examples of polysemy are:

Word: Bear
Meanings: A large furry animal. To carry.

Word: Bank
Meanings: A financial institution. The land bordering a river. To heap a substance into a mass or mound.

Lexis Examples 

The following are lexis examples:


Serendipity: This means the occurrence or combinations of events by chance to make a surprisingly good outcome.

Ubiquitous: It means being present everywhere.

Ephemeral: It means something which only lasting for a short time.

Mellifluous: This means something this is musical, and pleasant to hear.

Examples Of Lexis And Structure


Following the comprehensive explanation on each category of lexis and the meaning of structure, let's consider the various examples of lexis and structure as a whole.

The examples of lexis and structure are:

  • Having played for the team for six years, he decided to join another.
  • The bridge connecting the two cities was blown up by the enemy
  • Jane asked James if she could meet him later.
  • The witness was guilty of swearing to a statement he knew to be false. The opposite of swearing to a statement he knew to be false is "Perjury"

How To Answer Lexis And Structure In Jamb


To answer lexis and structure in jamb, it's best if the student doesn't ultimately regard the Dictionary as the authority to answering the questions. This is because the word may have different meaning.

Thus, question under Lexis and structure are best answered by looking at the surrounding and circumstances of the words and how they are used.

Also, consider using the four elements of sentence structure which are Subject, Verb and Object.

Examples of Lexis And Structure Jamb Questions And Answer


Here are some Lexis and structure jamb questions and answers. You can go through them to have more broad understanding on each concept under the study of English Language.

The questions that are set for Jamb under Lexis and structure are in subcategories. They are synonyms, antonyms, the words that best explains the information conveyed in the sentence and the options that best complete the gap.

You should be able to decipher the answer by first finding out which category the question falls into.

These are some of the questions and answers from 2011 Jamb.

Synonyms: Mrs Asio wanted her sister to stop being " so detached."
Answer: indifferent

Antonyms: The warring communities were coerced into negotiating a settlement
Answer: persuaded.

Best complete the gap: I want to ........... this chance to acquaint you with the latest development.
Answer: seize.



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Pawners Paper: Lexis And Structure: Meaning, Categories, Examples
Lexis And Structure: Meaning, Categories, Examples
Lexis is the words and phrases in a language. Whereas, structure is the combination and arrangements of words to form sentences. Lexis And Structure
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