Relational words have high metaphoric potential

  • Posted on: 15 November 2013
  • By: Eyal Sagi
TitleRelational words have high metaphoric potential
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsJamrozik, A, Sagi, E, Goldwater, M, Gentner, D
EditorShutova, E, Beigman-Klebanov, B, Testreault, J, Kozareva, Z
Conference NameProceedings of the First Workshop on Metaphor in NLP

What influences the likelihood that a word will be used metaphorically? We tested whether the likelihood of metaphorical use is related to the relationality of a word’s meaning. Relational words name relations between entities. We predicted that relational words, such as verbs (e.g., speak) and relational nouns (e.g., marriage) would be more likely to be used metaphorically than words that name entities (e.g., item). In two experiments, we collected expert ratings of metaphoricity for uses of verbs, relational nouns, and entity nouns collected from a corpus search. As predicted, uses of relational words were rated as more metaphorical than uses of entity words. We discuss how these findings could inform NLP models of metaphor.

Refereed DesignationRefereed