unshavengod (unshavengod) wrote in linguaphiles,
unshavengod
unshavengod
linguaphiles

synonym challenge

I am not sure if there is a name for this phenomenon... sometimes 2 words appear to be interchangeable despite a very different etymology. But disagreements can arise.

Is there a formal way linguists can measure synonymous-ness?

I am particularly interested in:

"I have faith in [object}" vs. "I trust [object]"

My instinct is to look for situations where the two phrases have clearly different meanings. Is that the approach you would take?


for starters:
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/faith
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/trust
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