Verb Time and Tense Correlation – Present →  June 17, 2012

Given the present moment as deictic centre, it might seem trivial to de­fine the three basic tenses that have formed the backbone of much linguis­tic work on time reference in grammar, namely present, past and future, as follows: present tense means coincidence of the time of the situation and the present moment; past tense means […]

Tense category of verbs: Definition →  June 16, 2012

The idea of locating situations in time is a purely conceptual notion. All the events are referred to one of the three time dimensions – the present, the past, or the future. All human languages have ways of locating in time but they do, however, differ from one another on two parameters. The first dif­ference […]

Verb grammatical categories: Person and number →  June 16, 2012

Number and person distinctions are found in verbs in many languages. This was the case in Old English where the verb was characterized by a devel­oped paradigm. In Modern English, verb forms have lost the vast majority of formal markers. As a result, the range of the two categories is very limited. The categories of […]

Verb: Functional classification →  June 15, 2012

The functional classification presupposes differentiation of verbs ac­cording to their ability to form a certain type of the predicate. This ability stems from the lexical meaningfulness of a verb. Notional verbs are lexi­cally meaningful verbs that denote an action or a state and perform in the sentence an independent function. In contrast, functional verbs exist […]

Verb: Morphological, combinatorial and semantic classifications →  June 15, 2012

All English verbs are divided into two groups on the basis of their mor­phological peculiarities, i.e. on the basis of the forms of the Participle II and past tenses. The most numerous group within this division is that of regular verbs: regular verbs form their main forms by means of adding a dental ending to […]

Verb: Morphemic structure →  June 15, 2012

Verb-forming derivational means are not numerous. The common de­vices are 1) affixation, 2) conversion, 3) verb+adverb combination, 4) back-formation. There is a rather short list of derivational affixes making English verbs. First, these are a limited number of suffixes such as the suffixes -en (to blacken, to strengthen, to toughen), -fy (to intensify, to ratify, […]

Verb: Grammatical meaning →  June 14, 2012

The verb is a part of speech that conveys a grammatical meaning of an action, i.e. of a dynamic quality developing in time. Here, the grammatical meaning of an action is stretched: it is understood not only as “action” proper but also as a state or a statement of existence of an object, or as […]

Morphological classifications in Ancient Indian and Latin grammars →  March 2, 2012

The first two extant attempts to categorize words were undertaken in two different parts of the world, in Ancient Greece by Plato and in Ancient India by Panini, author of the oldest Sanskrit grammar. In Indian grammatical tradition, the ability to inflect, that is morphological characteristic, was taken as the basic criterion dividing words into […]

Non-finite English verb forms: Gerund →  November 7, 2009

The Gerund is the most specific non-finite form of the verb in the Eng­lish language. The formal sign of the Gerund is wholly homonymous with that of Participle I: it is the suffix -ing added to its grammatically leading element. Whereas the Infinitive and the Participles are forms typical of all modern Indo-European languages, the […]

Non-finite English verb forms: Infinitive →  November 7, 2009

The Infinitive is the non-finite form of the verb which combines the properties of the verb with those of the noun, serving as the verbal name of a process. By virtue of its general process-naming function, the Infinitive should be considered as the head-form of the whole paradigm of the verb. In this quality it […]