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Old September 28, 2010, 07:16 PM
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vita32 vita32 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tarential View Post
If I'm not mistaken, not all opposites are antonyms but all antonyms are opposites. This particular combination may not be an antonym, so if I'm wrong about that I apologize.

One thing of note I should mention. While the opposite of "sweet" always turns up "sour" in my mind, the opposite of "bitter" is certainly "sweet". So while I wouldn't think "bitter" is the best word to list as the opposite, it matches the description. I asked a few other people those questions and got the same answers ("What is the opposite of sweet? Sour. What is the opposite of bitter? Sweet."), for whatever it's worth.
If we think of antonyms as true opposites (that is they must be on the opposite ends of a stick or pole, so to speak and not one lying somewhere in between the two ends). On the taste gradient, sweet will lie on one end of the pole and bitter will lie on the opposite end; and sour will lie somewhere between these two(sweet/bitter) why? Because, sweet is a very pleasant taste and I don't know that there are other tastes that would surpass this attribute. Bitter is very unpleasant and all other tastes (salty/sour etc.) will be found in this imaginary gradient but not at the extreme end. I think of antonyms as always lying on opposite extremes.

The figurative use of sweet/bitter as opposites is also logical. For example, one may say: Oh how sweet it would be to be reunited with my loved one/ones; and also: I fought bitterly with my spouse ( we don't say I fought sourly); Although sour is sometimes used to describe a relationship that had gone bad. It does not describe it in an extreme way. The word "Bitter" had been used to describe extreme divorce procedures between husbands and wives. This is just my opinion and I'm open to be persuaded otherwise.
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Last edited by vita32; September 28, 2010 at 07:19 PM. Reason: to correct spelling error.
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