View table of contents for this book View table of contents for LinguaLinksLibrary Go to LinguaLinks home page

What is perfective aspect?



Perfective aspect is an aspect that expresses a temporal view of an event or state as a simple whole, apart from the consideration of the internal structure of the time in which it occurs.

Examples (English)
  • He walked there.

    This type of construction expresses a temporal view of walk distinct from those expressed in the following constructions:

  • He was walking there.
  • He used to walk there.
  • Generic
      Perfective aspect is a kind of

    Comrie 1976a 12, 18–19


    Ducrot and Todorov 1979 307


    Pei and Gaynor 1954 164


    Hartmann and Stork 1972 20


    Bybee 1985 142


    Elson and Pickett 1988 28


    Crystal 1985 224


    Mish 1991 872

    Context for this page:

    Go to SIL home page This page is an extract from the LinguaLinks Library, Version 5.0 published on CD-ROM by SIL International, 2003. [Ordering information.]

    Page content last modified: 5 January 2004

    © 2004 SIL International