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date: 20 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter deals with meaning elements of the predicate that are mainly connected with temporal characteristics other than those, like tense, that are directly connected to the speech act. These are sometimes referred to as inner aspect, in contrast to outer aspect, which deals with temporal operators like Progressive, Perfect and Habitual. The chapter focuses in particular on the division of predicates into aspectual classes, such as states, activities, accomplishments, achievements, and semelfactives, and criteria for such classifications. There is also some discussion of the stage level/individual level distinction, and the theory introduced by the philosopher Donald Davidson that all predicates have an event argument. Most of the data are from English but there are examples from Slavonic languages and a number of other languages.

Keywords: aspectual class, inner aspect, accomplishment, achievement, activity, state, semelfactive

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