One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The smallest meaningful contrastive unit in a writing system.Compare with phoneme
letter, figure, symbol, sign, mark, type, cipher, device, hieroglyph, runeView synonyms
- ‘To reduce illiteracy and improve education in minority communities, the earliest efforts were concentrated on revising the existing writing systems to achieve a closer one-to-one correspondence between phonemes and graphemes.’
- ‘Then, beginning readers learn to parse the printed word into graphemes and subsequently assign phonemes to the different graphemes.’
- ‘There were more deviations from the normal pattern in the pointed experiment, where dyslexies had to process both graphemes and diacritic signs than in the nonpointed experiment.’
- ‘Alternatively, the graphemes can be synthesized and mapped onto complete orthographic lexical representations.’
- ‘However, to be able to correctly map graphemes to phonemes, or phonemes to graphemes, children have to rely on well-specified phonological representations.’
1930s: from graph + -eme.
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