|1.||comparative and historical linguistics|
|2.||the scientific analysis of written records and literary texts|
|3.||(no longer in scholarly use) the study of literature in general|
|[C17: from Latin philologia, from Greek: love of language]|
a term now rarely used but once applied to the study of language and literature. Nowadays a distinction is usually made between literary and linguistic scholarship, and the term philology, where used, means the study of language-i.e., linguistics (q.v.). It survives in the titles of a few learned journals that date to the 19th century. Comparative philology was a former name for what is now called comparative linguistics (q.v.).
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