philology
Definition - The traditional name for the study of language.

Notes:
1. In the 20th century this term was superseded by linguistics, especially in the United States. Hence, those who were once called philologists are now called linguists.

Etymology -
The word ultimately derives from the Greek philologia, love of literature, discussion, and learning (from philo, loving + logos, word or speech).

Oxford English Dictionary -
Its first citation in the sense "the study of language" is from 1716:
"Harduin has there several erudite Remarks upon Philology: especially upon the Pronunciation and Dialects of the Greek Tongue."
(M. Davies Athen. Brit. III. 102)



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