From: Gary Shannon <[log in to unmask]> wrote: <<<<< know <-> not know know <-> unknow (forget) do <-> not do do <-> undo This seems more like the three points of a triangle than the two endpoints of a single spectrum. Yet in other cases these two different opposites really mean about the same thing: welcome <-> not welcome welcome <-> unwelcome happy <-> not happy happy <-> unhappy >>>> Depends what reference you pick: If you pick the resultive state of a process (knowing) then you can compare it to the ingressive dynamic state of getting there (to learn) and its reverse dynamic state (forgetting). However, if you pick a state of "knowing" outside any process (instinct?) then you get the opposite state (to not know.) Same with awake/asleep, closed/open (but "standing up" has no specific opposite: It could be "sitting" as well as "lying down" or any other position.) That's why you can have doublets with negative "not" and opposite un-. These are examples of semantic polarity/scalar, reverses/opposite pairs. There are other kinds of pairs whose units are relative: parent/child (and why not fruit/plant), enemy/friend, up/down, horizontal/vertical, etc. Semantics books give examples of all categories. My conlang uses them all, including antonyms like "floor/ceiling". I also use handy words like Indonesian "anak": kunci "a lock" > anak kunci "key", bow/arrow, etc.