Language is the direct means of communication among people. The tools it uses are words and language patterns reflecting the man’s wishes, emotions, thoughts and cultures. Before turning the internal sound into the external sound, we have to pick the appropriate words and mold them into meanings and form patterns. These kind of selections and regulations are qualifications to what we say ‘use of language’ and they help individuals who live around conversation communities get along with each other. We, as humans, learn the basic words of our native language since birth.
However, in time, as we come across different experiences, deal with different subjects, become more aware of the world around us, we start to learn and use more words and complex structures. Since we express ourselves with languages, more acquisition of vocabulary is essential in order to express ourselves better and clearer. The term lexical field can be described as a group of words with associated meanings and uses.
For example, field specific lexis of computers: software, modem, cursor, mouse, monitor.. Kinship terms, military ranks, colours.. These are all fields that can be narrowed down into a group of words. Lexical fields can also be narrowed. For example, take colours as a field, and give examples such as; red, orange, blue..Now take red as a lexical subfield, it can also be narrowed down to words like these — crimson, scarlet, vermillion..which are more detailed shapes of red.Some languages have a considerably higher number of words in a specific lexical field. For instance, Turkish has a wealthy vocabulary for kinship terms whilst this lexical field is rather impoverished in English. And now I will try to explain the reason behind this, stating my opinions and presenting my researches.We, bilingual people, sometimes find ourselves having trouble with not being able to express ourselves the best equally in two languages. For example, I, myself, sometimes cannot find the right word for what I want to say in my native language but I can easily find it in English and express myself better. What I am trying to demonstrate here is this: Lets take the example above. Turkish is bountiful when it comes to kinship terms. You can almost describe everyone, everybody has a name appointed. For example: Amcazade, Emmi oџlu ( the son of the uncle), Bald±z ( sister of the groom’s wife), Bacanak ( when two men’s wives are sister, they call each other bacanak) lots of examples like these can be given. However, English, German and French, terms such as “kay±nbirader, bacanak, eniџte, elti, yenge, g¶rјmce, bald±z” correspond to a single indicator according to the gender. For instance; in English when we are talking about our mother’s brother, we say ‘uncle’ and when we are talking about our father’s brother, we again say ‘uncle’ however, these terms are distinguished in Turkish, as day± being the brother of the mother, amca being the brother of the father. Cultural differences between nations are the most obvious reason. For instance; I think Turkey is a country where family, relative relationships are valued in a great deal. It is something important in our culture. So, there occurs the necessity of these terms. Due to the sincerity we share, we’ve come up with names and throughout time they’ve evolved and turned into various words. When a crowded language family group, Indo-European languages’ word roots are examined, we see that Turkish is more inclined to go into details in the description of concepts. For example, it is seen that, the colour names in Indo-European languages are all traced back to putative mutual root “ghel” which means to shine, gleam. In Turkish, this situation brings different ways of description. For example Turkish is also rich in colour tones based on certain objects in nature: viџne§јrјџј, piџmiџayva, camg¶beџi, gјlkurusu, nar§i§eџi, kavuni§i, yavruaџz±, limonkјfј, civcivsar±s±, samansar±s±, sјtbeyaz(±),karbeyaz(±), kirlibeyaz, ¶rdekbaџ±, a§±kyeџil, fosforyeџili, §imenyeџili, yemyeџil, devetјyј…There is also a richness of concept in Turkish in terms of objects, plants and animals. According to their type, age, colour, function and different qualifications, animals like horse, sheep, goat, there are over 80 words which are still in use in Anatolian dialects. We can attribute this to the prevalence of farming in Turkey, in my opinion.Now lets talk about the richness in English. In English we can find words suitable for multiple situations. For instance; the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth is called arachibutyrophobia, or forgetting what you are thinking suddenly is called aposiopesis. Especially in recent years, the fact that the developments taking place in Europe and America in fields of science, technique, art reflected to the language, has caused equivalents of new terms entering into the language as words and terms, expanding the words. What countries and their neighbours go through is also a great contributor, we can say. Due to one’s community and culture, experiences have a great impact on perception and thoughts used in present day and this influences the way people communicate to others. As a conclusion, every language has lexical fields they are rich in and here I’ve examined Turkish and English. Everything differs from region to region. There are many words which may not have glosses of equivalents in English and reverse is also true. It is all about usage necessity of those words.