ON META-TEXTUAL OPERATORS CONTAINING THE COMPONENT 'SAY'
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At the meta-textual level, a primary role among linguistic signals is played by operators that contain the semantic component 'say'. That component is taken by a number of linguists to be a fundamental unit of 'the language of semantics'. As part of the semantic structure of several meta-textual formulae, it conveys statements about the dialogue or about a component of the dialogue such as its topic. The component 'say', at the meta-textual level, is organically associated with the informational field of replies in the first place. The meta-informational items concerned can be classified as follows: (1) ones that appear explicitly in the surface structure of the utterance, and (2) ones that are hidden, in an implicit manner, in the deep structure of the utterance. The first group comprises, in Hungarian, the following items: mond 'say', megmond 'tell', mondjuk 'let's say', mondom neked / nektek 'I tell you', oszinten mondom neked 'I tell you sincerely', azt mondjak 'they say', ahogy mondani szokas 'as the saying goes', kar arrol beszelni 'it's not worth talking about', kar volt ezt megmondanom 'I regret having said that', igazat mondtam 'I told you the truth', koztünk mondva 'just between ourselves', akartam valamit mondani 'I meant to tell you something', mit is akartam mondani? 'what was I going to say?', etc. The second group contains meta-structures that are less obvious since they are elliptic, they involve parts that are omitted from the full expression. For instance: roviden '[I say it] briefly'; roviden es velosen / roviden es tomoren / roviden es vilagosan '[I tell you] briefly, tersely, and clearly'; egyszeruen 'simply' [= 'I will say it in a simpler or shorter form, I will summarise it]; apropo 'apropos' [= 'I will tell you something that pertains to the foregoing and that just occurred to me']; egyebkent / masfelol / zarojelben / mellekesen 'however / on the other hand / besides / by the way' [= 'I will give you information that is loosely connected to the foregoing']; etc.
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