Experiment 1 Materials (Neutral Meaning)

These stimuli were used in the following experiment:

GERNSBACHER, M. A., ROBERTSON, R. R. W., & WERNER, N. K. (2000). The costs and benefits of meaning. In D. S. Gorfein’s (Ed.) On the consequences of meaning selection. APA Books, Washington, D.C. [view PDF]


N = neutral
S = same
D = different

1. Primes:
D: She rubbed her temple.
N: She looked at her temple.
S: She prayed at her temple.
Target:She visited her temple.

2. Primes:
D: He calculated the mass.
N: He arranged the mass.
S: He worshipped at the mass.
Target: He walked to the mass.

3. Primes:
D: He spun the top.
N: He spotted the top.
S: He gazed up to the top.
Target: He climbed to the top.

4. Primes:
D: She filled up the pitcher.
N: She passed by the pitcher.
S: She threw to the pitcher.
Target: She yelled at the pitcher.

5. Primes:
D: She carried the case.
N: She selected the case.
S: She debated the case.
Target: She prepared for the case.

6. Primes:
D: She tasted the punch.
N: She told him about the punch.
S: She defended against the punch.
Target: She blocked the punch.

7. Primes:
D: She chopped dates.
N: She despised dates.
S: She made dates.
Target: She went out on dates.

8. Primes:
D: He joined the club.
N: He liked the club.
S: He swung the club.
Target: He hit with the club.

9. Primes:
D: He walked on the deck.
N: He argued about the deck.
S: He shuffled the deck.
Target: He stacked the deck.

10. Primes:
D: He lived in the present.
N: He was annoyed at the present.
S: He bought the present.
Target: He wrapped the present.

11. Primes:
D: He shot with the bow.
N: He fixed the bow.
S: He tied the bow.
Target: He untied the bow.

12. Primes:
D: He measured with the ruler.
N: He described the ruler.
S: He obeyed the ruler.
Target: He served under the ruler.

13. Primes:
D: She sang the note.
N: She recognized the note.
S: She wrote the note.
Target: She mailed the note.

14. Primes:
D: She sliced the toast.
N: She offered the toast.
S: She recited the toast.
Target: She proposed the toast.

15. Primes:
D: She erased the board
N: She wondered about the board.
S: She was elected to the board.
Target: She presided over the board.

16. Primes:
D: He transplanted the organ.
N: He examined the organ.
S: He tuned the organ.
Target: He played the organ.

17. Primes:
D: She won the match.
N: She stepped away from the match.
S: She lit the match.
Target: She blew out the match.

18. Primes:
D: She was stuck in the jam.
N: She read about the jam.
S: She bottled the jam.
Target: She ate the jam.

19. Primes:
D: He played gin.
N: He learned about gin.
S: He poured gin.
Target: He drank gin.

20. Primes:
D: He performed the drill.
N: He demonstrated the drill.
S: He plugged in the drill.
Target: He bought the drill.

21. Primes:
D: He robbed the bank.
N: He photographed the bank.
S: He sunbathed on the bank.
Target: He sat on the bank.

22. Primes:
D: She was a member of the cabinet.
N: She observed the cabinet.
S: She dusted off the cabinet.
Target: She opened up the cabinet.

23. Primes:
D: She cancelled the reservation.
N: She mistrusted the reservation.
S: She lived on the reservation.
Target: She visited the reservation.

24. Primes:
D: He threw to the batter.
N: He discovered the batter.
S: He mixed the batter.
Target: He poured out the batter.


starred items are neutral to match the neutral experimental items

YNM : Yes/No Match ambiguous (24) - 8 neutral sentences

1. He cleaned the arms.*
He played the arms.

2. She washed the china.
She humiliated the china.

3. She was lean.
She recorded lean.

4. He climbed on the bluff.
He ironed the bluff.

5. She played squash.
She sang squash.

6. He sat by the well.
He translated the well.

7. He picked up the file.*
He wandered the file.

8. She was quite a ham.
She dove a ham.

9. He picked up his racket.
He defeated his racket.

10. She was a member of the press.
She matted the press.

11. He mended the sole.
He confessed the sole.

12. He tanned the hide.
He flew the hide.

13. He opened the door with the key.
He respected with the key.

14. She made it fit.
She told it fit.

15. He needed a second coat.*
He yelled a coat.

16. She signed the bill.*
She asked the bill.

17. He ran around the diamond.
He hired the diamond.

18. She utilized the staff.*
She rewound the staff.

19. He noticed the bark.*
He notified the bark.

20. He baked the tart.
He horrified the tart.

21. She was named after a star.*
She was tamed a star.

22. She pounded in the post.
She impressed the post.

23. She sat by the fan.*
She concluded the fan.

24. She wore a habit.
She drove a habit.

NYM: No/Yes match ambiguous (24) - 8 neutral sentences

1. He quartered the wake.
He attended the wake.

2. She tortured the mine.
She excavated the mine.

3. He scared the rock.
He hated the rock.*

4. She swam the order.
She gave the order.

5. He strangled the iron.
He plugged in the iron.

6. She telephoned the stick.
She picked up the stick.

7. She angled a blunt.
She was known to be blunt.

8. He argued one foot.
He stood on one foot.

9. She sanded the change.
She counted the change.

10. He rode the grace.
He said the grace.

11. She manicured the hatch.
She lowered the hatch.

12. He sharpened a break.
He took a break.

13 He laminated the spade.
He picked up the spade.*

14. She waltzed the tip.
She pointed to the tip.

15. He pleased the pot.
He bought the pot.*

16. He embarrassed the draft.
He resisted the draft.

17. She crawled the spring.
She swam in the spring.*

18. She untucked the perch.
She disliked the perch.*

19. He stayed the pool.
He swam in the pool.

20. She shivered the trade.
She learned the trade.

21. She wound the ball.
She caught the ball.

22. She spit the plant.
She wrote about the plant.*

23. He coiled the seal.
He described the seal.*

24. He inflated the page.
He asked for the page.*

NNM: No/No match (24)

1. She forgave the beam.
She pitied the beam.

2. He proved the stern.
He yelled the stern.

3. She lived in a bolt.
She sailed a bolt.

4. She blew the mint.
She bored the mint.

5. He offended the passage.
He tasted the passage.

6. She drifted the sound.
She tenderized the sound.

7. He scattered the fall.
He congratulated the fall.

8. She collaborated the ace.
She stung the ace.

9. He accompanied the jar.
He swam the jar.

10. She starved the sign.
She played the sign.

11. He tamed a picket.
He read a picket.

12 She threw a project.
She manicured a project.

13. He walked a share.
He defended a share.

14. She drank the spot.
She opened the spot.

15. She argued with the straw.
She locked with the straw.

16. He nodded the wind.
He stared the wind.

17. She stood the will.
She consoled the will.

18. He distracted the speed.
He hugged the speed.

19. He changed the fresh.
He toasted the fresh.

20. She framed the express.
She smelled the express.

21. He spoke the cell.
He astonished the cell.

22. He fought the pit.
He scorned the pit.

23. She married the fair.
She disgusted the fair.

24. He bewildered the sty.
He whispered the sty.

YNN: Yes/No mismatch (24) - 8 neutral sentences

1. He bought a battery.
He decreased a slug.

2. He paused for a second.
He confided a steer.

3. He survived the blow.
He humiliated the fence.

4. She judged the entry.
She sautéed the record.

5. She examined the pupil.*
She corked the contest.

6. She turned to the right.
She administered the gull.

7. He questioned the major.*
He dressed the refuse.

8. He worried about the room.*
He nagged the drop.

9. She traveled to the resort.
She spread to the nap.

10. She focused on the company.*
She babbled the rib.

11. She received a permit.
She blushed a story.

12. He compiled the list.
He cured the poker.

13. She asked for the light.*
She tricked the desert.

14. He found the sage.*
He narrated the compound.

15. He painted the lobby.
He bounced the minute.

16. She moved the pawn.
She pretended the belt.

17. He signed the deed.
He shouted the gear.

18. She acquired the land.
She coughed the frame.

19. She wondered about the chest.*
She swore it in the rash.

20. She tore her dress.
She spoke her stitch.

21. He sailed into the port.
He rose the mind.

22. He mended the sock.
He crept the rung.

23. She visited the capital.
She lent the hard.

24. He bragged about the suit.*
He baffled the clog.

NYN: No/Yes mismatch (24)

1. He wept the drum.
He solved the riddle.

2. He combed a letter.
He told a lie.

3. She splashed the novel.
She joined the reserve.

4. He choked the ring.
He enjoyed the concert.

5. She cried the round.
She needed the rest.

6. She toyed with the lounge.
She paid for the speaker.*

7. She seemed the lash.
She chipped the marble.*

8. He jogged the heat.
He lied on the resume.

9. She shuddered the hood.
She showered before work.

10. He troubled the down.
He typed the letter.*

11. She tossed the front.
She liked the firm.

12. She talked to the counter.
She inspected the back.*

13. She cooked the brush.
She took the call.

14. She rearranged a curb.
She blew a fuse.

15. He wished the craft.
He put out the fire.

16. He pitied the log.
He touched the horn.*

17. He stomped the mean.
He caught the nut.*

18. She decorated the grind.
She cleaned the mess.

19. She glazed the ground.
She reviewed the issue.*

20. She fed her cap.
She bandaged her hand.

21. He boiled the cliff.
He starred in the play

22. He intimidated the float.
He walked to the school.

23. He swept the hound.
He chased the duck.

24. He shut the grass.
He finished the sentence.*

NNN: No/No mismatch (24)

1. She lifted the static.
She filled the mad.

2. He pacified the meal.
He deprived the hamper.

3. She asked the foul.
She ached the dove.

4. He went the comb.
He pointed the junk.

5. She walked the leaf.
She lifted the hang.

6. He sewed the germ.
He sweated the bend.

7. He wrote a felt.
He traversed a dough.

8. She put down a corn.
She left behind a blue.

9. She slipped the chip.
She carried the drag.

10. She had a talent for the grate.
She drained the lock.

11. He wiped the limp.
He stole the perfect.

12. He forced the shed.
He pressed the upset.

13. She unlaced the yard.
She questioned the steep.

14. She held the scratch.
She kept the admit.

15. He amused the hail.
He poked at the drove.

16. He clicked the flat.
He sipped the nail.

17. He blew up the like.
He watered the flight.

18. She typed the fling.
She edged the trial.

19. She devoured the net.
She conspired the panel.

20. She boiled the pass.
She initiated the odd.

21. He retold the bridge.
He tasted the reel.

22. She hired the shingles.
She called the grave.

23. He wove the ear.
He stung the gall.

24. He inspired the egg.
He indented the guy.

YYN: Yes/Yes mismatch (24) - 8 neutral sententces

1. He paid the bail.
He was curious about the band.*

2. She searched for the bat.*
She picked up the pile.

3. He lanced the boil.
He disposed of the buffer.*

4. She recycled the can.
She cleaned the sewer.

5. He disagreed with the count.*
He was caught in the snare.

6. She photographed the fawn.
She wrapped some food in the foil.

7. He dug up the root.
He scraped off the gum.*

8. She sliced the loaf.
She wrote on the pad.

9. She read the palm.
She applied for the patent.

10. He signed his name with the pen.
He threw out the scrap.

11. He cleaned the rifle.
He lit the incense.

12. She played the scale.
She removed the colon.*

13. He needed the staple.*
He ate the prune.

14. She locked the vault.
She sat on the stoop.

15. He bought the pop.
He drank from the tap.

16. She paid the toll.
She hoed the row.

17. He sang one refrain.
He had only one vice.

18. She avoided the shark.*
She inflated the tire.

19. He hammered in the stake.
He brushed the yak.

20. She combed out the snarl.
She deposited the tender.

21. He exchanged the Yen.
He cut down the pine.

22. She sharpened the saw.
She got gas from the pump.

23. He called her a sap.
He ran away from a bear.

24. She fed a crow.
She swam a stroke.


P1. Y
She caught the bass.

P2. N
He argued the stalk.

P3. N
She typed the plot.

P4. Y
She lost a pound.

P5. N
She motioned the mold.

P6. Y
He denied the charge.

P7. Y
He cooked the chop.

P8. N
He raced the interest.