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Grammatical aspect

Grammatical aspect

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In linguistics
Linguistics
Linguistics is the scientific study of human language. Linguistics can be broadly broken into three categories or subfields of study: language form, language meaning, and language in context....

, the grammatical aspect of a verb
Verb
A verb, from the Latin verbum meaning word, is a word that in syntax conveys an action , or a state of being . In the usual description of English, the basic form, with or without the particle to, is the infinitive...

 is a grammatical category that defines the temporal flow (or lack thereof) in a given action, event, or state, from the point of view of the speaker. A basic distinction is with regard to whether the speaker looks at a situation as bounded
Boundedness (linguistics)
In linguistics, boundedness is an aspectual feature that describes a situation as having a definite beginning or end, or both, not as continuing indefinitely. Thus the clause "I ate fish" describes a unitary, bounded action, as it implies both the beginning and the end...

 and unitary, without reference to any flow of time during the situation ("I ate"), or with no reference to temporal bounds but with reference to the nature of the flow of time during the situation ("I was eating", "I used to eat"). The unitary view without internal temporal flow is known as the perfective aspect
Perfective aspect
The perfective aspect , sometimes called the aoristic aspect, is a grammatical aspect used to describe a situation viewed as a simple whole, whether that situation occurs in the past, present, or future. The perfective aspect is equivalent to the aspectual component of past perfective forms...

, while the non-bounded view with reference to temporal flow is known as the imperfective aspect
Imperfective aspect
The imperfective is a grammatical aspect used to describe a situation viewed with internal structure, such as ongoing, habitual, repeated, and similar semantic roles, whether that situation occurs in the past, present, or future...

. Within the imperfective aspect, further common aspectual distinctions include whether the situation is repetitive or habitual
Habitual aspect
In linguistics, the aspect of a verb is a grammatical category that defines the temporal flow in a given action, event, or state. As its name suggests, the habitual aspect specifies an action as occurring habitually: the subject performs the action usually, ordinarily, or customarily...

 ("I used to eat"), is continuous in a particular time frame ("I was eating"), or has continuing relevance in a later time frame ("I have eaten"). Any one language will have at most a subset of the aspectual distinctions attested in the world's languages.

History


Grammatical aspect may have been dealt with for the first time in the work of the Indian linguist Yaska
Yaska
' ) was a Sanskrit grammarian who preceded Pāṇini , assumed to have been active in the 5th or 6th century BC.He is the author of the Nirukta, a technical treatise on etymology, lexical category and the semantics of words...

 (ca. 7th century BCE), who distinguished actions that are processes (bhāva), from those where the action is considered as a completed whole (mūrta). This is the key distinction between the imperfective and perfective. Yaska also applied this distinction to a verb versus an action nominal.

Greek and Latin grammarians were also interested in aspect, but the idea did not enter into the modern Western grammatical tradition until the nineteenth century, via the study of Slavic grammar. English usage of the term dates from 1853, when it first appeared in the Oxford English Dictionary
Oxford English Dictionary
The Oxford English Dictionary , published by the Oxford University Press, is the self-styled premier dictionary of the English language. Two fully bound print editions of the OED have been published under its current name, in 1928 and 1989. The first edition was published in twelve volumes , and...

.

Modern usage


Aspect is often confused with the closely related concept of tense
Grammatical tense
A tense is a grammatical category that locates a situation in time, to indicate when the situation takes place.Bernard Comrie, Aspect, 1976:6:...

, because they both convey information about time. While tense relates the time of a situation to some other time, commonly the time of speaking, aspect conveys other temporal information, such as duration, completion, or frequency, as it relates to the time of action. Thus tense refers to temporally when while aspect refers to temporally how. Aspect can be said to describe the texture of the time in which a situation occurs, such as a single point of time, a continuous range of time, a sequence of discrete points in time, etc., whereas tense indicates its location in time.

For example, consider the following sentences: "I eat", "I am eating", "I have eaten", and "I have been eating". All are in the present tense
Present tense
The present tense is a grammatical tense that locates a situation or event in present time. This linguistic definition refers to a concept that indicates a feature of the meaning of a verb...

, as they describe the present situation, yet each conveys different information or points of view as to how the action pertains to the present. As such, they differ in aspect.

Grammatical aspect is a formal property of a language
Language
Language may refer either to the specifically human capacity for acquiring and using complex systems of communication, or to a specific instance of such a system of complex communication...

, distinguished through overt inflection
Inflection
In grammar, inflection or inflexion is the modification of a word to express different grammatical categories such as tense, grammatical mood, grammatical voice, aspect, person, number, gender and case...

, derivational affixes, or independent words that serve as grammatically required marker
Marker (linguistics)
In linguistics, a marker is a free or bound morpheme that indicates the grammatical function of the marked word, phrase, or sentence. In analytic languages and agglutinative languages, markers are generally easily distinguished. In fusional languages and polysynthetic languages, this is often not...

s of those aspects. For example, the K'iche' language
K'iche' language
The K’iche’ language is a part of the Mayan language family. It is spoken by many K'iche' people in the central highlands of Guatemala. With close to a million speakers , it is the second-most widely spoken language in the country after Spanish...

 spoken in Guatemala has the inflectional prefixes k- and x- to mark incompletive and completive aspect; Mandarin Chinese
Standard Mandarin
Standard Chinese or Modern Standard Chinese, also known as Mandarin or Putonghua, is the official language of the People's Republic of China and Republic of China , and is one of the four official languages of Singapore....

 has the aspect markers -le, -zhe, zài-, and -guo to mark the perfective, durative stative, durative progressive, and experiential aspects, and also marks aspect with adverb
Adverb
An adverb is a part of speech that modifies verbs or any part of speech other than a noun . Adverbs can modify verbs, adjectives , clauses, sentences, and other adverbs....

s; and English marks the continuous aspect with the verb to be coupled with present participle and the perfect with the verb to have coupled with past participle. Even languages that do not mark aspect morphologically
Morphology (linguistics)
In linguistics, morphology is the identification, analysis and description, in a language, of the structure of morphemes and other linguistic units, such as words, affixes, parts of speech, intonation/stress, or implied context...

 or through auxiliary verb
Auxiliary verb
In linguistics, an auxiliary verb is a verb that gives further semantic or syntactic information about a main or full verb. In English, the extra meaning provided by an auxiliary verb alters the basic meaning of the main verb to make it have one or more of the following functions: passive voice,...

s, however, can convey such distinctions by the use of adverbs or other syntactic
Syntax
In linguistics, syntax is the study of the principles and rules for constructing phrases and sentences in natural languages....

 constructions.

Grammatical aspect is distinguished from lexical aspect or aktionsart, which is an inherent feature of verbs or verb phrases and is determined by the nature of the situation that the verb describes.

Common aspectual distinctions


The most fundamental aspectual distinction, represented in many languages, is between perfective aspect and imperfective aspect. This is the basic aspectual distinction in the Slavic languages. It semantically corresponds to the distinction between the morphological forms
Morphology (linguistics)
In linguistics, morphology is the identification, analysis and description, in a language, of the structure of morphemes and other linguistic units, such as words, affixes, parts of speech, intonation/stress, or implied context...

 known respectively as the aorist
Aorist
Aorist is a philological term originally from Indo-European studies, referring to verb forms of various languages that are not necessarily related or similar in meaning...

 and imperfect in Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

, the preterite and imperfect in Spanish, the simple past
Simple Past
The simple past, sometimes called the preterite, is the past tense of Modern English. It is used to describe events in the past. It may combine with either or both of two aspects, the perfect and the progressive...

 (passé simple) and imperfect in French, and the perfect and imperfect in Latin (from the Latin "perfectus", meaning "completed").

Essentially, the perfective aspect looks at an event as a complete action, while the imperfective aspect views an event as the process of unfolding or a repeated or habitual event (thus corresponding to the progressive/continuous aspect for events of short-term duration and to habitual aspect for longer terms). For events of short durations in the past, the distinction often coincides with the distinction in the English language between the simple past "X-ed," as compared to the progressive "was X-ing" (compare "I wrote the letters this morning" (i.e. finished writing the letters: an action completed) and "I was writing letters this morning"). In describing longer time periods, English needs context to maintain the distinction between the habitual ("I called him often in the past" - a habit that has no point of completion) and perfective ("I called him once" - an action completed), although the construct "used to" marks both habitual aspect and past tense and can be used if the aspectual distinction otherwise is not clear.

Sometimes, English has a lexical distinction where other languages may use the distinction in grammatical aspect. For example, the English verbs "to know" (the state of knowing) and "to find out" (knowing viewed as a "completed action") correspond to the imperfect and perfect of the French verb "savoir".

Aspect vs. tense


The Germanic languages
Germanic languages
The Germanic languages constitute a sub-branch of the Indo-European language family. The common ancestor of all of the languages in this branch is called Proto-Germanic , which was spoken in approximately the mid-1st millennium BC in Iron Age northern Europe...

 combine the concept of aspect with the concept of tense
Grammatical tense
A tense is a grammatical category that locates a situation in time, to indicate when the situation takes place.Bernard Comrie, Aspect, 1976:6:...

. Although English largely separates tense and aspect formally, its aspects (neutral, progressive, perfect, progressive perfect, and (in the past tense) habitual) do not correspond very closely to the distinction of perfective vs. imperfective that is found in most languages with aspect. Furthermore, the separation of tense and aspect in English is not maintained rigidly. One instance of this is the alternation, in some forms of English, between sentences such as "Have you eaten yet?" and "Did you eat yet?". Another is in the pluperfect ("I had eaten"), which sometimes represents the combination of past tense and perfect ("I was full because I had already eaten"), but sometimes simply represents a past action that is anterior to another past action ("A little while after I had eaten, my friend arrived"). (The latter situation is often represented in other languages by a simple perfective tense. Formal Spanish and French use a past anterior tense in cases such as this.)

Like tense, aspect is a way that verbs represent time. However, rather than locating an event or state in time, the way tense does, aspect describes "the internal temporal constituency of a situation", or in other words, aspect is a way "of conceiving the flow of the process itself". English aspectual distinctions in the past tense include "I went, I used to go, I was going, I had gone"; in the present tense "I lose, I am losing, I have lost, I have been losing, I am going to lose"; and with the future modal "I will see, I will be seeing, I will have seen, I am going to see". What distinguishes these aspects within each tense is not (necessarily) when the event occurs, but how the time in which it occurs is viewed: as complete, ongoing, consequential, planned, etc.

In most dialects of Ancient Greek, aspect is indicated uniquely by verbal morphology. For example, the very frequently used aorist
Aorist
Aorist is a philological term originally from Indo-European studies, referring to verb forms of various languages that are not necessarily related or similar in meaning...

, though a functional preterite
Preterite
The preterite is the grammatical tense expressing actions that took place or were completed in the past...

 in the indicative mood, conveys historic or 'immediate' aspect in the subjunctive and optative. The perfect in all moods is used as an aspectual marker, conveying the sense of a resultant state. E.g. - I see (present); - I saw (aorist); - I am in a state of having seen = I know (perfect).

Many Sino-Tibetan languages, like Mandarin, lack grammatical tense but are rich in aspect.

Lexical vs. grammatical aspect



There is a distinction between grammatical aspect, as described here, and lexical aspect. Lexical aspect is an inherent property of a verb or verb-complement phrase, and is not marked formally. The distinctions made as part of lexical aspect are different from those of grammatical aspect. Typical distinctions are between states ("I owned"), activities ("I shopped"), accomplishments ("I painted a picture"), achievements ("I bought"), and punctual, or semelfactive
Semelfactive
In linguistics, semelfactives are a class of aktionsart or lexical verbal aspect. That is, they are a category of how, if at all, time flows in the occurrence of an action or situation; this aspect is incorporated into the root verb itself rather than being expressed grammatically by inflections...

, events ("I sneezed"). These distinctions are often relevant syntactically. For example, states and activities, but not usually achievements, can be used in English with a prepositional for-phrase describing a time duration: "I had a car for five hours", "I shopped for five hours", but not "*I bought a car for five hours". Lexical aspect is sometimes called Aktionsart
Aktionsart
The lexical aspect or aktionsart of a verb is a part of the way in which that verb is structured in relation to time. Any event, state, process, or action which a verb expresses—collectively, any eventuality—may also be said to have the same lexical aspect...

, especially by German
German language
German is a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. With an estimated 90 – 98 million native speakers, German is one of the world's major languages and is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union....

 and Slavic linguists. Lexical or situation aspect is marked in Athabaskan languages
Athabaskan languages
Athabaskan or Athabascan is a large group of indigenous peoples of North America, located in two main Southern and Northern groups in western North America, and of their language family...

.

One of the factors in situation aspect is telicity
Telicity
In linguistics, telicity is the property of a verb or verb phrase that presents an action or event as being complete in some sense...

. Telicity might be considered a kind of lexical aspect, except that it is typically not a property of a verb in isolation, but rather a property of an entire verb phrase. Achievements, accomplishments and semelfactive
Semelfactive
In linguistics, semelfactives are a class of aktionsart or lexical verbal aspect. That is, they are a category of how, if at all, time flows in the occurrence of an action or situation; this aspect is incorporated into the root verb itself rather than being expressed grammatically by inflections...

s have telic situation aspect, while states and activities have atelic situation aspect.

The other factor in situation aspect is duration, which is also a property of a verb phrase. Accomplishments, states, and activities have duration, while achievements and semelfactives do not.

Indicating aspect


In some languages, aspect and time are very clearly separated, making them much more distinct to their speakers. There are a number of languages that mark aspect much more saliently than time. Prominent in this category are Chinese
Chinese language
The Chinese language is a language or language family consisting of varieties which are mutually intelligible to varying degrees. Originally the indigenous languages spoken by the Han Chinese in China, it forms one of the branches of Sino-Tibetan family of languages...

 and American Sign Language
American Sign Language
American Sign Language, or ASL, for a time also called Ameslan, is the dominant sign language of Deaf Americans, including deaf communities in the United States, in the English-speaking parts of Canada, and in some regions of Mexico...

, which both differentiate many aspects but rely exclusively on optional time-indicating terms to pinpoint an action with respect to time. In other language groups, for example in most modern Indo-European languages
Indo-European languages
The Indo-European languages are a family of several hundred related languages and dialects, including most major current languages of Europe, the Iranian plateau, and South Asia and also historically predominant in Anatolia...

 (except Slavic languages
Slavic languages
The Slavic languages , a group of closely related languages of the Slavic peoples and a subgroup of Indo-European languages, have speakers in most of Eastern Europe, in much of the Balkans, in parts of Central Europe, and in the northern part of Asia.-Branches:Scholars traditionally divide Slavic...

), aspect has become almost entirely conflated, in the verbal morphological system, with time.

In Russian
Russian language
Russian is a Slavic language used primarily in Russia, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. It is an unofficial but widely spoken language in Ukraine, Moldova, Latvia, Turkmenistan and Estonia and, to a lesser extent, the other countries that were once constituent republics...

, aspect is more salient than tense in narrative. Russian, like other Slavic languages, uses different lexical entries for the different aspects, whereas other languages mark them morphologically
Morphology (linguistics)
In linguistics, morphology is the identification, analysis and description, in a language, of the structure of morphemes and other linguistic units, such as words, affixes, parts of speech, intonation/stress, or implied context...

, and still others with auxiliaries
Auxiliary verb
In linguistics, an auxiliary verb is a verb that gives further semantic or syntactic information about a main or full verb. In English, the extra meaning provided by an auxiliary verb alters the basic meaning of the main verb to make it have one or more of the following functions: passive voice,...

 (e.g., English).

In literary Arabic
Arabic language
Arabic is a name applied to the descendants of the Classical Arabic language of the 6th century AD, used most prominently in the Quran, the Islamic Holy Book...

 (الفصحى, al-Fusha) the verb has two aspect-tenses: perfective (past), and imperfective (non-past). There is some disagreement among grammarians whether to view the distinction as a distinction in aspect, or tense, or both. The "Past Verb" (فعل ماضي, fi'l maadiy) denotes an event (حدث, hadath) completed in the past, but says nothing about the relation of this past event to present status. For example, "وصل", wasala, "he arrived", indicates that arrival occurred in the past without saying anything about the present status of the arriver - maybe he stuck around, maybe he turned around and left, etc. - nor about the aspect of the past event except insofar as completeness can be considered aspectual. This "Past Verb" is clearly similar if not identical to the Greek Aorist, which is considered a tense but is more of an aspect marker. In the Arabic, aorist aspect is the logical consequence of past tense. By contrast, the "Verb of Similarity" (فعل المضارع, fi'l al-mudaara'ah), so called because of its resemblance to the active participial noun, is considered to denote an event in the present or future without committing to a specific aspectual sense beyond the incompleteness implied by the tense: يضرب "yadribu", he strikes/is striking/will strike/etc. Those are the only two "tenses" in Arabic (not counting "أمر"، "amr", command, which the tradition counts as denoting future events.) At least that's the way the tradition sees it. To explicitly mark aspect, Arabic uses a variety of lexical and syntactic devices.

Contemporary Arabic dialects are another matter. One major change from al-Fusha is the use of a prefix particle (ب "bi" in most dialects) to explicitly mark progressive, continuous, or habitual aspect: بيكتب, bi-yiktib, he is now writing, writes all the time, etc.

Aspect can mark the stage of an action. The prospective aspect
Prospective aspect
In linguistics, the prospective aspect is a grammatical aspect describing an event that occurs subsequent to a given reference time. One way to view tenses in English and many other languages is as a combination of a reference time in which a situation takes place, and the time of a particular...

 is a combination of tense and aspect that indicates the action is in preparation to take place. The inceptive aspect identifies the beginning stage of an action (e.g. Esperanto
Esperanto
is the most widely spoken constructed international auxiliary language. Its name derives from Doktoro Esperanto , the pseudonym under which L. L. Zamenhof published the first book detailing Esperanto, the Unua Libro, in 1887...

 uses ek-, e.g. Mi ekmanĝas, "I am beginning to eat.") and inchoative and ingressive aspects identify a change of state (The flowers started blooming) or the start of an action (He started running). Aspects of stage continue through progressive, pausative, resumptive, cessive, and terminative.

Important qualifications:
  • Although the perfective is often thought of as representing a "momentary action", this is not strictly correct. It can equally well be used for an action that took time, as long as it is conceived of as a unit, with a clearly defined start and end, such as "Last summer I visited France".
  • Grammatical aspect represents a formal distinction encoded in the grammar of a language. Although languages that are described as having imperfective and perfective aspects agree in most cases in their use of these aspects, they may not agree in every situation. For example:
    • Some languages have additional grammatical aspects. Spanish and Ancient Greek, for example, have a perfect (not the same as the perfective), which refers to a state resulting from a previous action (also described as a previous action with relevance to a particular time, or a previous action viewed from the perspective of a later time). This corresponds (roughly) to the "have X-ed" construction in English, as in "I have recently eaten". Languages that lack this aspect (such as Portuguese, which is closely related to Spanish) often use the past perfective to render the present perfect (compare the roughly synonymous English sentences "Have you eaten yet?" and "Did you eat yet?").
    • In some languages, the formal representation of aspect is optional, and can be omitted when the aspect is clear from context or does not need to be emphasized. This is the case, for example, in Mandarin Chinese, with the perfective suffix le and (especially) the imperfective zhe.
    • For some verbs in some languages, the difference between perfective and imperfective conveys an additional meaning difference; in such cases, the two aspects are typically translated using separate verbs in English. In Greek, for example, the imperfective sometimes adds the notion of "try to do something" (the so-called conative imperfect); hence the same verb, in the imperfective (present or imperfect) and aorist, respectively, is used to convey look and see, search and find, listen and hear. (For example, ηκουομεν ēkouomen "we listened" vs. ηκουσαμεν ēkousamen "we heard".) Spanish has similar pairs for certain verbs, such as (imperfect and preterite, respectively) sabía "I knew" vs. supe "I found out", podía "I was able to" vs. pude "I succeeded (in doing something)", quería "I wanted to" vs. quise "I tried to", no quería "I did not want to" vs. no quise "I refused (to do something)". Such differences are often highly language-specific.

English


The English tense–aspect system has two morphologically distinct tenses, present and past. No marker of a future tense exists on the verb in English; the futurity of an event may be expressed through the use of the auxiliary verb
Auxiliary verb
In linguistics, an auxiliary verb is a verb that gives further semantic or syntactic information about a main or full verb. In English, the extra meaning provided by an auxiliary verb alters the basic meaning of the main verb to make it have one or more of the following functions: passive voice,...

s "will" and "shall", by a present form, as in "tomorrow we go to Newark", or by some other means. Past is distinguished from present-future, in contrast, with internal modifications of the verb. These two tenses may be modified further for progressive aspect (also called continuous aspect), for the perfect, or for both. These two aspectual forms are also referred to as BE +ING and HAVE +EN, respectively, which avoids what may be unfamiliar terminology.

Aspects of the present tense:
  • Present simple (not progressive, not perfect): "I eat"
  • Present progressive (progressive, not perfect): "I am eating"
  • Present perfect (not progressive, perfect): "I have eaten"
  • Present perfect progressive (progressive, perfect): "I have been eating"


Aspects of the past tense:
  • Past simple (not progressive, not perfect): "I ate"
  • Past progressive (progressive, not perfect): "I was eating"
  • Past perfect (not progressive, perfect): "I had eaten"
  • Past perfect progressive (progressive, perfect): "I had been eating"


(While many elementary discussions of English grammar classify the present perfect as a past tense, it relates the action to the present time. One cannot say of someone now deceased that he "has eaten" or "has been eating"; the present auxiliary implies that he is in some way present (alive), even if the action denoted is completed (perfect) or partially completed (progressive perfect).)

The uses of the progressive and perfect aspects are quite complex. They may refer to the viewpoint of the speaker:
I was walking down the road when I met Michael Jackson's lawyer. (Speaker viewpoint in middle of action)
I have traveled widely, but I have never been to Moscow. (Speaker viewpoint at end of action)


But they can have other illocutionary forces
Illocutionary act
Illocutionary act is a term in linguistics introduced by John L. Austin in his investigation of the various aspects of speech acts. We may sum up Austin's theory of speech acts with the following example...

:
You are being stupid now. (You are doing it deliberately)
You are not having chocolate with your sausages! (I forbid it)
I am having lunch with Mike tomorrow. (It is decided)


English expresses some other aspectual distinctions with other constructions. Used to + VERB is a past habitual
Habitual aspect
In linguistics, the aspect of a verb is a grammatical category that defines the temporal flow in a given action, event, or state. As its name suggests, the habitual aspect specifies an action as occurring habitually: the subject performs the action usually, ordinarily, or customarily...

, as in "I used to go to school", and going to / gonna + VERB is a prospective
Going-to future
Going-to future is a term used to describe an English sentence structure referring to the future, making use of the verb phrase to be going to...

, a future situation highlighting current intention or expectation, as in "I'm gonna go to school next year".

Note that the aspectual systems of certain dialects of English, such as African-American Vernacular English (see for example habitual be
Habitual be
Habitual be is the use of an invariant be in African American Vernacular English and Caribbean English to mark habitual or extended actions in the present tense, instead of using the Standard English inflected forms of be, such as is and are....

), and of creoles based on English vocabulary, such as Hawaiian Creole English, are quite different from those of standard English, and often distinguish aspect at the expense of tense.

German vernacular and colloquial


Although Standard German
Standard German
Standard German is the standard variety of the German language used as a written language, in formal contexts, and for communication between different dialect areas...

 does not have aspects, many Upper German languages, all West Central German
West Central German
West Central German belongs to the Central, High German dialect family in the German language. Its dialects are thoroughly Franconian including the following sub-families:* Central Franconian...

 languages, and some more vernacular German languages do make one aspectual distinction, and so do the colloquial languages of many regions, the so called German regiolects. While officially discouraged in schools and seen as 'bad language', local English teachers like the distinction, because it corresponds well with the English continuous form. It is formed by the conjugated auxiliary verb "sein" (to be) followed by the preposition "am" and the infinitive, or the nominalized verb. The latter two are phonetically indistinguishable; in writing, capitalization differs: "Ich war am essen" vs. "Ich war am Essen" (I was eating, compared to the Standard German approximation: "Ich war beim Essen"); yet these forms are not standardized and thus are relatively infrequently written down or printed, even in quotations or direct speech. If written, the first form (the infinitive) is preferred.

Slavic languages


In Slavic languages
Slavic languages
The Slavic languages , a group of closely related languages of the Slavic peoples and a subgroup of Indo-European languages, have speakers in most of Eastern Europe, in much of the Balkans, in parts of Central Europe, and in the northern part of Asia.-Branches:Scholars traditionally divide Slavic...

, only one nearly universal type of aspectual opposition forms two grammatical aspects: perfective
Perfective aspect
The perfective aspect , sometimes called the aoristic aspect, is a grammatical aspect used to describe a situation viewed as a simple whole, whether that situation occurs in the past, present, or future. The perfective aspect is equivalent to the aspectual component of past perfective forms...

 and imperfective
Imperfective aspect
The imperfective is a grammatical aspect used to describe a situation viewed with internal structure, such as ongoing, habitual, repeated, and similar semantic roles, whether that situation occurs in the past, present, or future...

 (in contrast with English, which has several aspectual oppositions: perfect vs. neutral; progressive vs. nonprogressive; and in the past tense, habitual ("used to ...") vs. neutral). The aspectual distinctions exist on the lexical level - speakers have no unique method of forming a perfective verb from a given imperfective one (or conversely). Perfective verbs are most often formed by means of prefixes, changes in the root
Root (linguistics)
The root word is the primary lexical unit of a word, and of a word family , which carries the most significant aspects of semantic content and cannot be reduced into smaller constituents....

, or using a completely different root (suppletion
Suppletion
In linguistics and etymology, suppletion is traditionally understood as the use of one word as the inflected form of another word when the two words are not cognate. For those learning a language, suppletive forms will be seen as "irregular" or even "highly irregular". The term "suppletion" implies...

). Note, however, that possessing a prefix does not necessarily mean that a verb is perfective. Contrast between a perfective and an imperfective verb may be also indicated by stress, e.g. Russian perfective осы́пать, imperfective осыпа́ть (to strew, shower, heap upon something).

With a few exceptions each Slavic verb is either perfective or imperfective. Most verbs form strict pairs of one perfective and one imperfective verb with generally the same meaning. However, each Slavic language contains a number of bi-aspectual verbs, which may be used as both imperfective and perfective. They are mainly borrowings from non-Slavic languages, but some native verbs also belong to this group. As opposed to them, mono-aspectual verbs are mainly native. There are mono-aspectual imperfective verbs without perfective equivalents (among others, verbs with the meaning "to be" and "to have") as well as perfective verbs without imperfective equivalents (for instance, verbs with the meaning "become ...", e.g. "to become paralyzed", etc.).

The perfective aspect allows the speaker to describe the action as finished, completed, finished in the natural way. The imperfective aspect does not present the action as finished, but rather as pending or ongoing.

An example is the verb "to eat" in the Serbo-Croatian language
Serbo-Croatian language
Serbo-Croatian or Serbo-Croat, less commonly Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian , is a South Slavic language with multiple standards and the primary language of Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro...

. The verb translates either as jesti (imperfective) or pojesti (perfective). Now, both aspects could be used in the same tense of Serbian. For example (omitting, for simplicity, feminine forms like jela):
Serbo-Croatian
Example Tense Aspect
Ja sam jeo/ Ja сaм јеo past imperfective
Ja sam pojeo/ Ja сaм појеo perfective
Ja sam bio jeo/ Ja сaм био jeo pluperfect imperfective
Ja sam bio pojeo/ Ja сaм био појеo perfective
Ja ću jesti/ Ja ћy jecти future imperfective
Ja ću pojesti/ Ja ћy пojecти perfective


Ja sam pojeo signals that the action was completed. Its meaning can be given as "I ate (something) and I finished eating (it)"; or "I ate (something) up".

Ja sam jeo signals that the action took place (at a specified moment, or in the course of one's life, or every day, etc.); it may mean "I was eating", "I ate" or "I have been eating".

The following examples are from Polish
Polish language
Polish is a language of the Lechitic subgroup of West Slavic languages, used throughout Poland and by Polish minorities in other countries...

.

Imperfective verbs mean:
  • actions in progress, just ongoing states and activities, with significant course (in opinion of the speaker);
  • activities posing the background for other (perfective) activities, ex. czytałem książkę, gdy zadzwonił telefon 'I was reading the book when the telephone rang';
  • simultaneous activities, ex. będę czytać książkę, podczas gdy brat będzie pisać list 'I will be reading the book while brother will be writing the letter';
  • durative activities, lasting through some time, e.g. krzyczał 'he was shouting', będzie drgać 'it will be vibrating';
  • motions without a strict aim, ex. chodzę 'I am walking here and there';
  • multiple (iterative) activities, ex. dopisywać 'to insert many times to the text', będziemy wychodziły 'we will go out (many times)';
  • non-resultative activities, only heading towards some purpose: będę pisał list 'I will be writing the letter';
  • continuous states, ex. będę stać 'I will be standing'.


Perfective verbs can refer to the past or to the future, but not to present activities – an activity happening now cannot be ended, so it cannot be perfective. Perfective verbs convey:
  • states and activities that were ended (even if a second ago) or will be ended, with insignificant course, short or treated as a whole by the speaker, ex. krzyknął 'he shouted', drgnie 'it will stir (only once)';
  • single-time activities, ex. dopisać 'to insert to the text', wyszedł 'he went out';
  • actions whose goals have already been achieved, even if with difficulty, ex. przeczytałem 'I have read', doczytała się 'she finished reading and found what she had sought';
  • reasons for the state, ex. pokochała 'she came to love', zrozumiesz 'you (sg.) will understand', poznamy 'we will get to know';
  • the beginning of the activity or the state, ex. wstanę 'I will stand up' (and I will stand), zaczerwienił się 'he reddened';
  • the end of the activity or the state, ex. dośpiewaj 'sing until the end';
  • activities executed in many places, on many objects or by many subjects at the same time, ex. powynosił 'he carried out (many things)', popękają 'They will break out in many places', poucinać 'To cut off many items';
  • actions or states that last some time, ex. postoję 'I will stand for a little time', pobył 'he was (there) for some time'.


Most simple Polish verbs are imperfective (as in other Slavic languages), ex. iść 'to walk, to go', nieść 'to carry', pisać 'to write'. But there are also few simple perfective verbs, ex. dać 'to give', siąść 'to sit down'. There exist many perfective verbs with suffixes and without prefixes, ex. krzyknąć 'to shout', kupić 'to buy' (cf. the imperfective kupować with a different suffix).

Numerous perfective verbs are formed from simple imperfectives by prefixation. To create the perfective counterpart, verbs use various prefixes without any clear rules. The actual prefix can even depend on a dialect or special meaning. For example: the perfective counterpart to malować is pomalować when it means 'to paint a wall; to fill with a color', or namalować when it means 'to paint a picture; to depict sth/sb'.

Besides the strict perfective equivalent, a number of other prefixed verbs may be formed from a given simple imperfective verb. They all have similar but distinct meaning. And they form, as a rule, their own imperfective equivalents by means of suffixation (attaching suffix
Suffix
In linguistics, a suffix is an affix which is placed after the stem of a word. Common examples are case endings, which indicate the grammatical case of nouns or adjectives, and verb endings, which form the conjugation of verbs...

es) or stem alternation. Example:
  • prać 'to wash / clean clothes with water and soap / washing powder' is a simple imperfective verb;
  • uprać is its perfective counterpart while doprać, przeprać are other derived perfective verbs with a little different meanings;
  • dopierać, przepierać are secondary imperfective verbs that are counterparts for doprać, przeprać respectively; *upierać does not exist because the basic verb prać is the imperfective counterpart of uprać. (in fact upierać is an imperfective of completely different verb uprzeć, typically used as reflexive verb uprzeć się)


A number of verbs form their aspectual counterparts by simultaneous prefixation and suffixation or by suppletion, ex. (the first one is imperfective) stawiać - postawić 'to set up', brać - wziąć 'to take', widzieć - zobaczyć 'to see'.

Special imperfective verbs express aimless motions. They are mono-aspectual, i.e., they have no perfective equivalents. They are formed from other imperfective verbs by stem alternations or suppletion, ex. nosić 'to carry around' (from nieść), chodzić 'to walk around, to go around' (from iść 'to go, to walk'). However, when such a verb gets an aim anyway, it becomes iterative: chodzić do szkoły 'to go to school'.

Other iteratives build another group of mono-aspectual imperfective verbs. They are formed from other imperfective verbs, including the previous group: chadzać 'to walk around usually (from chodzić), jadać 'to eat usually' (from jeść 'to eat'). Both groups are not too numerous: most Polish verbs cannot form iterative counterparts.

Perfective verbs that express activities executed in many places, on many objects, or by many subjects at the same time, and those that express actions or states that last some time, have no imperfective counterparts. They are formed with the prefix po- (which can have other functions as well).

States and activities that last for some time can be expressed by means of both imperfective and perfective verbs: cały dzień leżał w łóżku 'he was in bed all day long' (literally: 'he lay in bed') means nearly the same as cały dzień przeleżał w łóżku. The difference is mainly stylistic: imperfective is neutral here, while using perfective causes stronger tone of the statement.

Aspect in Slavic is a superior category in relation to tense
Grammatical tense
A tense is a grammatical category that locates a situation in time, to indicate when the situation takes place.Bernard Comrie, Aspect, 1976:6:...

 or mood
Grammatical mood
In linguistics, grammatical mood is a grammatical feature of verbs, used to signal modality. That is, it is the use of verbal inflections that allow speakers to express their attitude toward what they are saying...

. Particularly, some verbal forms (like infinitive) cannot distinguish tense but they still distinguish aspect. Here is the list of Polish verb forms formed by both imperfective and perfective verbs (such a list is similar in other Slavic languages). The example is an imperfective and a perfective Polish verb with the meaning 'to write'. All personal forms are given in third person, masculine singular, with Russian analog:
  • Infinitive: pisać - napisać / писать - написать
  • Passive participle: pisany - napisany / писаный - написанный
  • Gerund: pisanie - napisanie / писание - написание
  • Past impersonal form: pisano - napisano / писано - написано
  • Past impersonal form in subjunctive: pisano by - napisano by / does not exist
  • Past tense: pisał - napisał / писал - написал
  • Future tense: będzie pisać / będzie pisał - napisze / будет писать - напишет
  • Conditional, first form: pisałby - napisałby / писал бы - написал бы
  • Conditional, second form: byłby pisał - byłby napisał / does not exist
  • Imperative: pisz - napisz / пиши - напиши


The following may be formed only if the verb is imperfective:
  • Contemporary adverbial participle – pisząc / usually exists, but not for писать
  • Active participle – piszący / пишущий
  • Present tense – pisze / пишет


One form may be created only if the verb is perfective, namely:
  • Anterior adverbial participle – napisawszy / написав(ши)

Romance languages


Modern Romance languages merge the concepts of aspect and tense, but consistently distinguish perfective and imperfective aspects in the past tense. This derives directly from the way the Latin language used to render both aspects and consecutio temporum.

Italian language example (verb mangiare, to eat):

Mood: indicativo (indicative)
  • Presente (present): io mangio ("I eat", "I'm eating") - merges habitual and continuous aspects, among others
  • Passato prossimo (recent past): io ho mangiato ("I ate", "I have eaten") - merges perfective and perfect

  • Imperfetto (imperfect): io mangiavo ("I was eating", or "I usually ate") - merges habitual and progressive aspects
  • Trapassato prossimo (recent pluperfect): io avevo mangiato ("I had eaten") - tense, not ordinarily marked for aspect

  • Passato remoto (far past): io mangiai (I "ate") - perfective aspect
  • Trapassato remoto (far pluperfect): io ebbi mangiato ("I had eaten") - tense

  • Futuro semplice (simple future): io mangerò ("I shall eat") - tense
  • Futuro anteriore (future perfect): io avrò mangiato ("I shall have eaten") - future tense and perfect tense/aspect


The imperfetto/trapassato prossimo contrasts with the passato remoto/trapassato remoto in that imperfetto renders an imperfective (continuous) past while passato remoto expresses an aorist (punctual/historical) past.

Other aspects in Italian are rendered with other periphrases, like prospective
Prospective
Prospective literally means "looking forward". It can also refer to an event that is likely or expected to happen in the future. For example, a prospective student is someone who is considering attending a school — typically a high school student who is seriously considering applying to a...

 (io sto per mangiare "I'm about to eat", io starò per mangiare "I shall be about to eat"), or continuous/progressive (io sto mangiando "I'm eating", io starò mangiando "I shall be eating").

Finnic languages


Finnish
Finnish language
Finnish is the language spoken by the majority of the population in Finland Primarily for use by restaurant menus and by ethnic Finns outside Finland. It is one of the two official languages of Finland and an official minority language in Sweden. In Sweden, both standard Finnish and Meänkieli, a...

 and Estonian
Estonian language
Estonian is the official language of Estonia, spoken by about 1.1 million people in Estonia and tens of thousands in various émigré communities...

, among others, have a grammatical aspect contrast of telicity
Telicity
In linguistics, telicity is the property of a verb or verb phrase that presents an action or event as being complete in some sense...

 between telic and atelic. Telic sentences signal that the intended goal of an action is achieved. Atelic sentences do not signal whether any such goal has been achieved. The aspect is indicated by the case of the object: accusative is telic and partitive
Partitive
In linguistics, the partitive is a word, phrase, or case that divides something into parts. For example, in the English sentence I'll have some coffee, some is a partitive determiner because it makes the noun phrase some coffee refer to a subset of all coffee...

 is atelic. For example, the (implicit) purpose of shooting is to kill, such that:
  • Ammuin karhun -- "I shot the bear (succeeded; it is done)" i.e., "I shot the bear dead".
  • Ammuin karhua -- "I shot at the bear" i.e., "I shot the bear (and I am not telling if it died)".

Sometimes, corresponding telic and atelic forms have as little to do with each other semantically as "take" has with "take off". For example, naida means "to marry" when telic, but "to have sex with" when atelic.

Also, derivational suffixes exist for various aspects. Examples:
  • -ahta- "do suddenly by itself" as in ammahtaa "to shoot up" from ampua "to shoot"
  • -ele- "repeatedly" as in ammuskella "to go shooting around"


There are derivational suffixes for verbs, which carry frequentative
Frequentative
In grammar, a frequentative form of a word is one which indicates repeated action. The frequentative form can be considered a separate, but not completely independent word, called a frequentative...

, momentane
Momentane
In Finnish grammar, the momentane is a verb aspect indicating that an occurrence is sudden and short-lived.Finnish has a number of momentane markers; they differ in the valency and voice of the verbs they produce, but all indicate sudden, short-lived occurrences; for example, the verb ammahtaa is...

, causative
Causative
In linguistics, a causative is a form that indicates that a subject causes someone or something else to do or be something, or causes a change in state of a non-volitional event....

, and inchoative
Inchoative
Inchoative aspect is a grammatical aspect, referring to the beginning of an action or state. It can be found in conservative Indo-European languages such as Latin and Lithuanian, and also in Finnic languages. It should not be confused with the prospective, which denotes actions that are about to...

 aspect meanings also, pairs of verbs differing only in transitivity
Transitivity (grammatical category)
In linguistics, transitivity is a property of verbs that relates to whether a verb can take direct objects and how many such objects a verb can take...

 exist.

Philippine languages


Like many Austronesian languages
Austronesian languages
The Austronesian languages are a language family widely dispersed throughout the islands of Southeast Asia and the Pacific, with a few members spoken on continental Asia that are spoken by about 386 million people. It is on par with Indo-European, Niger-Congo, Afroasiatic and Uralic as one of the...

, the verbs of the Philippine languages
Philippine languages
The Philippine languages are a 1991 proposal by Robert Blust that all the languages of the Philippines and northern Sulawesi—except Sama–Bajaw and a few languages of Palawan—form a subfamily of Austronesian languages...

 follow a complex system of affixes in order to express subtle changes in meaning. However, the verbs in this family of languages are conjugated to express the aspects and not the tenses. Though many of the Philippine languages
Philippine languages
The Philippine languages are a 1991 proposal by Robert Blust that all the languages of the Philippines and northern Sulawesi—except Sama–Bajaw and a few languages of Palawan—form a subfamily of Austronesian languages...

 do not have a fully codified grammar, most of them follow the verb aspects that are demonstrated by Filipino
Filipino language
This move has drawn much criticism from other regional groups.In 1987, a new constitution introduced many provisions for the language.Article XIV, Section 6, omits any mention of Tagalog as the basis for Filipino, and states that:...

 or Tagalog
Tagalog language
Tagalog is an Austronesian language spoken as a first language by a third of the population of the Philippines and as a second language by most of the rest. It is the first language of the Philippine region IV and of Metro Manila...

.

Hawaiian


The Hawaiian language
Hawaiian language
The Hawaiian language is a Polynesian language that takes its name from Hawaii, the largest island in the tropical North Pacific archipelago where it developed. Hawaiian, along with English, is an official language of the state of Hawaii...

 conveys aspect as follows:
  • The unmarked verb, frequently used, can indicate habitual aspect or perfective aspect in the past.

  • ke + verb + nei is frequently used and conveys the progressive aspect in the present.

  • e + verb + ana conveys the progressive aspect in any tense.

  • ua + verb conveys the perfective aspect but is frequently omitted.

Creole languages


Creole language
Creole language
A creole language, or simply a creole, is a stable natural language developed from the mixing of parent languages; creoles differ from pidgins in that they have been nativized by children as their primary language, making them have features of natural languages that are normally missing from...

s, typically use the unmarked verb for timeless habitual aspect, or for stative aspect, or for perfective aspect in the past. Invariant pre-verbal markers are often used. Non-stative verbs typically can optionally be marked for the progressive, habitual, completive, or irrealis aspect. The progressive in English-based Atlantic Creole
Atlantic Creole
Atlantic Creole is a term used in North America to describe the Charter Generation of slaves during the European colonization of the Americas before 1660. These slaves had cultural roots in Africa, Europe and sometimes the Caribbean. They were of mixed race, primarily descended from European...

s often uses de (from English "be"). Jamaican Creole
Jamaican Creole
Jamaican Patois, known locally as Patois or Jamaican, and called Jamaican Creole by linguists, is an English-lexified creole language with West African influences spoken primarily in Jamaica and the Jamaican diaspora. It is not to be confused with Jamaican English nor with the Rastafarian use of...

 uses pan (from English "upon") for the present progressive and wa (from English "was") for the past progressive. Haitian Creole uses the progressive marker ap. Some Atlantic Creoles use one marker for both the habitual and progressive aspects. In Tok Pisin
Tok Pisin
Tok Pisin is a creole spoken throughout Papua New Guinea. It is an official language of Papua New Guinea and the most widely used language in that country...

, the optional progressive marker follows the verb. Completive markers tend to come from superstrate words like "done" or "finish", and some creoles model the future/irrealis marker on the superstrate word for "go".

American Sign Language


American Sign Language
American Sign Language
American Sign Language, or ASL, for a time also called Ameslan, is the dominant sign language of Deaf Americans, including deaf communities in the United States, in the English-speaking parts of Canada, and in some regions of Mexico...

 (ASL) is similar to many other sign languages in that it has no grammatical tense but many verbal aspects produced by modifying the base verb sign.

An example is illustrated with the verb TELL. The basic form of this sign is produced with the initial posture of the index finger on the chin, followed by a movement of the hand and finger tip toward the indirect object (the recipient of the telling). Inflected into the unrealized inceptive aspect ('to be just about to tell'), the sign begins with the hand moving from in front of the trunk in an arc to the initial posture of the base sign (i.e. index finger touching the chin) while inhaling through the mouth, dropping of the jaw, directing eye gaze toward the verb's object. The posture is then held rather than moved toward the indirect object. During the hold, the signer also stops the breath by closing the glottis. Other verbs (such as 'look at', 'wash the dishes', 'yell', 'flirt') are inflected into the unrealized inceptive aspect similarly: the hands used in the base sign move in an arc from in front of the trunk to the initial posture of the underlying verb sign while inhaling, dropping the jaw, and directing eye gaze toward the verb's object (if any), but subsequent movements and postures are dropped as the posture and breath are held.

Other aspects in ASL include the following: stative, inchoative ("to begin to..."), predisposional ("to tend to..."), susceptative ("to... easily"), frequentative ("to... often"), protractive ("to... continuously"), incessant ("to... incessantly"), durative ("to... for a long time"), iterative ("to... over and over again"), intensive ("to... very much"), resultative ("to... completely"), approximative ("to... somewhat"), semblitive ("to appear to..."), increasing ("to... more and more"). Some aspects combine with others to create yet finer distinctions.

Aspect is unusual in ASL in that transitive verbs derived for aspect lose their grammatical transitivity. They remain semantically transitive, typically assuming an object made prominent using a topic marker or mentioned in a previous sentence. See Syntax in ASL for details.

Terms for various aspects


The following aspectual terms are found in the literature. Approximate English equivalents are given.
  • Perfective
    Perfective aspect
    The perfective aspect , sometimes called the aoristic aspect, is a grammatical aspect used to describe a situation viewed as a simple whole, whether that situation occurs in the past, present, or future. The perfective aspect is equivalent to the aspectual component of past perfective forms...

    : 'I struck the bell' (an event viewed in its entirety, without reference to its temporal structure during its occurrence)
  • Momentane
    Momentane
    In Finnish grammar, the momentane is a verb aspect indicating that an occurrence is sudden and short-lived.Finnish has a number of momentane markers; they differ in the valency and voice of the verbs they produce, but all indicate sudden, short-lived occurrences; for example, the verb ammahtaa is...

    : 'The mouse squeaked once' (contrasted to 'The mouse squeaked / was squeaking')
  • Perfect (a common conflation of aspect and tense): 'I have arrived' (brings attention to the consequences of a situation in the past)
    • Recent perfect, also known as after perfect: 'I just ate' or 'I am after eating' (Hiberno-English
      Hiberno-English
      Hiberno-English is the dialect of English written and spoken in Ireland .English was first brought to Ireland during the Norman invasion of the late 12th century. Initially it was mainly spoken in an area known as the Pale around Dublin, with Irish spoken throughout the rest of the country...

      )
  • Prospective
    Prospective aspect
    In linguistics, the prospective aspect is a grammatical aspect describing an event that occurs subsequent to a given reference time. One way to view tenses in English and many other languages is as a combination of a reference time in which a situation takes place, and the time of a particular...

     (a conflation of aspect and tense): 'I am about to eat', 'I am going to eat" (brings attention to the anticipation of a future situation)
  • Imperfective
    Imperfective aspect
    The imperfective is a grammatical aspect used to describe a situation viewed with internal structure, such as ongoing, habitual, repeated, and similar semantic roles, whether that situation occurs in the past, present, or future...

     (an action with ongoing nature: combines the meanings of both the progressive and the habitual aspects): 'I am walking to work' (progressive) or 'I walk to work every day' (habitual).
  • Continuous: 'I am eating' or 'I know' (situation is described as ongoing and either evolving or unevolving; a subtype of imperfective)
  • Progressive: 'I am eating' (action is described as ongoing and evolving; a subtype of continuous)
  • Stative
    Stative verb
    A stative verb is one that asserts that one of its arguments has a particular property . Statives differ from other aspectual classes of verbs in that they are static; that is, they have undefined duration...

    : 'I know French' (situation is described as ongoing but not evolving; a subtype of continuous)
  • Habitual
    Habitual aspect
    In linguistics, the aspect of a verb is a grammatical category that defines the temporal flow in a given action, event, or state. As its name suggests, the habitual aspect specifies an action as occurring habitually: the subject performs the action usually, ordinarily, or customarily...

    : 'I used to walk home from work', 'I would walk home from work every day', 'I walk home from work every day' (a subtype of imperfective)
  • Gnomic/generic: 'Fish swim and birds fly' (general truths)
  • Episodic: 'The bird flew' (non-gnomic)
  • Continuative aspect: 'I am still eating'
  • Inceptive ~ inchoative
    Inchoative
    Inchoative aspect is a grammatical aspect, referring to the beginning of an action or state. It can be found in conservative Indo-European languages such as Latin and Lithuanian, and also in Finnic languages. It should not be confused with the prospective, which denotes actions that are about to...

    : 'I fell in love'
  • Terminative ~ cessative: 'I finished my meal'
  • Defective: 'I almost fell'
  • Pausative: 'I stopped working for a while'
  • Resumptive: 'I resumed sleeping'
  • Punctual: 'I slept'
  • Durative: 'I slept and slept'
  • Delimitative: 'I slept for an hour'
  • Protractive: 'The argument went on and on'
  • Iterative: 'I read the same books again and again'
  • Frequentative
    Frequentative
    In grammar, a frequentative form of a word is one which indicates repeated action. The frequentative form can be considered a separate, but not completely independent word, called a frequentative...

    : 'It sparkled', contrasted with 'It sparked'. Or, 'I run around', vs. 'I run'
  • Experiential: 'I have gone to school many times'
  • Intentional: 'I listened carefully'
  • Accidental: 'I accidentally knocked over the chair'
  • Intensive
    Intensive
    In grammar, an intensive word form is one which denotes stronger or more forceful action relative to the root on which the intensive is built. Intensives are usually lexical formations, but there may be a regular process for forming intensives from a root...

    : 'It glared'
  • Moderative: 'It shone'
  • Attenuative: 'It glimmered'

See also

  • Aktionsart
    Aktionsart
    The lexical aspect or aktionsart of a verb is a part of the way in which that verb is structured in relation to time. Any event, state, process, or action which a verb expresses—collectively, any eventuality—may also be said to have the same lexical aspect...

  • Ancient Greek grammar: Dependence of moods and tenses
  • Grammatical conjugation
    Grammatical conjugation
    In linguistics, conjugation is the creation of derived forms of a verb from its principal parts by inflection . Conjugation may be affected by person, number, gender, tense, aspect, mood, voice, or other grammatical categories...

  • Grammatical tense
    Grammatical tense
    A tense is a grammatical category that locates a situation in time, to indicate when the situation takes place.Bernard Comrie, Aspect, 1976:6:...

  • Grammatical mood
    Grammatical mood
    In linguistics, grammatical mood is a grammatical feature of verbs, used to signal modality. That is, it is the use of verbal inflections that allow speakers to express their attitude toward what they are saying...

  • Nominal TAM
    Nominal TAM
    Nominal TAM is the indication of tense–aspect–mood by inflecting a noun, rather than a verb. In clausal nominal TAM, the noun indicates TAM information about the clause....

     (tense–aspect–mood)
  • Tense–aspect–mood

Other references

  • Routledge Dictionary of Language and Linguistics (ISBN 0-415-20319-8), by Hadumod Bussmann, edited by Gregory P. Trauth and Kerstin Kazzazi, Routledge, London 1996. Translation of German
    German language
    German is a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. With an estimated 90 – 98 million native speakers, German is one of the world's major languages and is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union....

     Lexikon der Sprachwissenschaft Kröner Verlag, Stuttgart
    Stuttgart
    Stuttgart is the capital of the state of Baden-Württemberg in southern Germany. The sixth-largest city in Germany, Stuttgart has a population of 600,038 while the metropolitan area has a population of 5.3 million ....

     1990.
  • Morfofonologian harjoituksia, Lauri Carlson

  • Bache, C. (1982). Aspect and Aktionsart: Towards a semantic distinction. Journal of Linguistics, 18(01), 57-72.
  • Berdinetto, P. M., & Delfitto, D. (2000). Aspect vs. Actionality: Some reasons for keeping them apart. In O. Dahl (Ed.), Tense and Aspect in the Languages of Europe (pp. 189–226). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
  • Binnick, R. I. (1991). Time and the verb: A guide to tense and aspect. New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Binnick, R. I. (2006). Aspect and Aspectuality. In B. Aarts & A. M. S. McMahon (Eds.), The Handbook of English Linguistics (pp. 244–268). Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing.
  • Chertkova, M. Y. (2004). Vid or Aspect? On the Typology of a Slavic and Romance Category [Using Russian and Spanish Material]. Vestnik Moskovskogo Universiteta, Filologiya, 58(9-1), 97-122.
  • Comrie, B. (1976). Aspect: An introduction to the study of verbal aspect and related problems. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press.
  • Frawley, W. (1992). Linguistic semantics. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • Kortmann, B. (1991). The Triad "Tense–Aspect–Aktionsart". Belgian Journal of Linguistics, 6, 9-30.
  • MacDonald, J. E. (2008). The syntactic nature of inner aspect: A minimalist perspective. Amsterdam; Philadelphia: John Benjamins Pub. Co.
  • Maslov, I. S. (1998). Vid glagol'nyj [Aspect of the verb]. In V. N. Yartseva (Ed.), Jazykoznanie: Bol'shoj entsyklopedicheskij slovar' (pp. 83–84). Moscow: Bol'shaja Rossijskaja Entsyklopedija.
  • Richardson, K. (2007). Case and aspect in Slavic. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Sasse, H.-J. (2002). Recent activity in the theory of aspect: Accomplishments, achievements, or just non-progressive state? Linguistic Typology, 6(2), 199-271.
  • Sasse, H.-J. (2006). Aspect and Aktionsart. In E. K. Brown (Ed.), Encyclopedia of language and linguistics (Vol. 1, pp. 535–538). Boston: Elsevier.
  • Smith, C. S. (1991). The parameter of aspect. Dordrecht; Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers.
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