Identify is how? Origin, meaning and suggestions
The words "identical", "identity" and "identify" - this is something that recently accompanies our lives. People of humanitarian specialties were fashionable to write about the identity of the Russian people. We do not know whether the topic has been exhausted or not, but such a boom existed. Therefore, trying to catch up with the outgoing train, let's talk today about the meaning of the word “identify” and not only about it.
The origin and meaning of the related adjective
There was no verb in the etymological dictionary, but there was a relative adjective there. And since history miraculously enriches knowledge, makes it voluminous, we cannot leave the reader without this information.
We borrowed a word a long time ago, in the XIX century, from the French. In Russian, it means "the same." Naturally, the source language is Latin.In Russian, as we well know, identical is “identical, completely coinciding”.
True, in live speech, a word does not always correspond to its meaning. For example, when they say "identical devices", it means that they are identical in their functions, but not equal in details. Well, the reader probably knows all this without us. We have not forgotten that our goal is to “identify”. This discovery is still to come.
Meaning of the verb and the noun
But our path to the meaning of the verb is not so simple, as it might seem at first glance. Why? Because the definition given in the explanatory dictionary is the following: to identify is “to establish a coincidence, identity”. That is, for the sake of completeness, we lack the definition of “identity”. And it is more difficult to do this than with other previous objects of study, but still try to complete the task. So, the meaning of the word identity is:
- Close similarity, equality or equivalence.
- Representation of a person about himself, attitude to any nationality or social group.
Naturally, the first value is used much more often, and few people think about the second one, except for the scientists mentioned at the beginning.But we are interested in the most savvy and educated readers, so we don’t hide anything from them.
To understand the true meaning of the verb “identify” and its meaning, we need to include them in some context. In addition to the usual, we will experiment with a well-known phrase. Let's start with it.
Remember the cult quote: "I do not recognize you in makeup ..."? And one could say: "I can not identify you." True, in this case there would come the era of some parallel reality, where the language of the machine or the terminator would subjugate the Soviet masterpiece. But if we talk about less terrible consequences, the humor from the phrase would evaporate.
After we have a little plunged into postmodernism, it’s time to return to modernism, that is, modernity, and make some simpler suggestions:
- I can not identify you in the dark, go out into the light, and the camera does not see you.
- Identify this document is not possible: it is very wet in the rain.
- I can't identify you: my glasses stayed at home.
From the above examples one can catch one pattern: when it comes to official documents and deeds,then the word is in place, and when the conditional register of the language changes and the verb can be replaced by another fellow less literary, then you need to do so, because the object of study feels like a stranger in an informal setting. Let the reader think about it at your leisure. After all, this is a fascinating topic.