Meanings of Connotation

By | February 20, 2022

The first thing we are going to carry out is the determination of the etymological origin of the term connotation at hand. Specifically, by doing so we can establish that it comes from Latin as it is made up of the following parts of that language: the prefix “with”, which can be translated as “completely”; the word “note”, which is equivalent to “brand”; and the suffix “-cion”, which is synonymous with “action and effect”.

Connotation is the action and effect of connoting (which entails, in addition to its specific meaning, another of an appellative or expressive type). The connotation of a word or phrase, therefore, suggests an added meaning different from your own.

For example: “I think this advertising has a sexist connotation”, “The president’s speech seemed to be addressed to the audience, although many analysts noticed another connotation”, “If you address the boss in that way, many will think that your words have a particular connotation ”, “ Do not look for a connotation where there is none ”.

According to, the connotation implies that language has meanings that go beyond the literal. It can be said that a man is a lion because he has a lot of strength or courage, without this indicating that said person shows the same biological or physical characteristics as the animal in question.

When speaking of connotation, at the same time and almost irremediably, the antonym is used: denotation. This term can be defined as the basic and main meaning that any word has, that is, the one given to it in any dictionary.

Universal, objective and non-discrepant is, therefore, the denotative meaning of any word while when we speak of the connotative significant it is one that is characterized by being that which is subjective as it is the result of feelings, sensations and emotions.

In addition to all the above, we would have to emphasize that any word has a denotative and connotative sense at the same time. Thus, a term will have a denotative significant for all citizens but the connotative will be different based on the person in question.

Connotation can be said to be the secondary value of an expression or word. The image of a rose can connote love, infatuation or passion, meanings that do not have to do with the literal definition of this flower but with the value or meaning that is culturally created.

The phrase “suffer like a dog” or “treat like a dog” is another example of connotation. If a person comments that another “is suffering like a dog”, he is referring to a high degree of suffering. It does not mean that the unfortunate man sleeps on the floor and drinks water from a container, nor does it mean that all dogs face a suffering existence.

Finally, we would have to establish that there is a different meaning for the term we are addressing. In this case, we could underline the fact that connotation is also used to refer to the kinship that exists between two or more individuals and that its hallmark is the fact that it is not close, but rather distant.

Meanings of Connotation