Ferdinand de Saussure

Mémoire sur le système primitif des voyelles dans les langues indo-européennes

Saussure approaches theory of language from two different perspectives. On the one hand, language is a system of signs. That is, a semiotic system; or a semiological system as he himself calls it. On the other hand, a language is also a social phenomenon: a product of the language community.

sign—signified, meaning—value, language—speech, synchronic—diachronic, internal linguistics—external linguistics