In this chapter I shall provide a brief chronological review of the literature on semantic prosody, starting from some initial observations by Sinclair in 1987. I shall do this because it seems important to place contributions on the subject within a temporal context from the very outset, despite the fact that these contributions are not necessarily characterised by any systematic chronological development. On the contrary, the literature on semantic prosody is more usefully examined on a thematic basis, and subsequent chapters are in fact organised by theme rather than by chronology or by individual scholar.