English and French Metaphorically-Motivated Phraseological Units Containing Religious Terms

Document Type : Research Article


1 Kazan Federal University, Kazan, Russia.

2 Kazan Federal University, Kazan, Russia


The central point of discussion is how distinctive features of a traditional for English or French-speakers religious practice are reflected in the metaphorically motivated phraseological units of the English and French languages, containing a religious term. Such phraseological units constitute a substantial part of the phraseological corpuses of the languages being compared. Thus they are capable of reflecting not just individual associations connected with that or another religious term, but they can throw light on real trends showing how phraseology reflects certain aspects of traditional religious practice typical of the English and French cultures. The research has involved 500 French and 200 English metaphorically-motivated phraseological units containing a religious term, chosen from bilingual or monolingual idioms dictionaries. The analysis of their inner form reveals that in both languages being studied most of the metaphorically-motivated phraseological units containing a religious term are aimed at human beings, i.e. human in most cases appear as a target domain of metaphorical transposition of meaning. However as far as the source domain is concerned, notions connected with religious rites, cult procedures and objects are more characteristic of the French language, while the English phraseology mostly appeal to the general religious ideas as the source domain for metaphor-based phraseological units.