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SEMANTICS: a term introduced in Austin (1962) in the context of his theory of speech acts for those utterances which are used to perform an act instead of describing it. EXAMPLE: by uttering (i) the speaker actually makes an apology, he does not describe himself apologizing for his behaviour.

(i)  I apologize for my behaviour
This distinguishes performatives from constatives which are used to make a true or false statement. Performatives do not have truth conditions but felicity conditions. The type of verbs used to make performative utterances are called performatives or performative verbs: apologize, promise, declare.
LIT. Austin, J.L. (1962)
Chierchia and McConnell-Ginet (1990)