Halliday & Matthiessen (1999) On Abstraction

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Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 4, 385):
Language, therefore, is a resource organised into three strata differentiated according to order of abstraction. These strata are related by means of realisation. …
The strata are ordered in symbolic abstraction …

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 25):
Every scientific theory is itself a stratal-semiotic system, in which the relation among the different levels of abstraction is one of realisation.

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 144-5):
In other words, the elaboration sets up a relationship either of generality (delicacy), of abstraction (realisation), or of token to type (instantiation).

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 565):
The relationship between these two orders of abstraction, contextual and semantic, is a stratal one;

Halliday & Matthiessen (1999: 615, 616):
General terms are not necessarily abstract; a bird is no more abstract than a pigeon. But some words have referents that are purely abstract — words like cost and clue and habit and tend and strange; they are construing some aspect of our experience, but there is no concrete thing or process with which they can be identified.

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