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Re: THEORY: tense and aspect nomenclature (was Re: Verb tenses question)

From:Grandsire, C.A. <grandsir@...>
Date:Tuesday, December 21, 1999, 7:38
Tom Wier wrote:
> > Clinton Moreland-Stringham wrote: > > > > Muke Tever wrote: > > > > > > > I need a name for the verb tense that denotes an action that is beginning, > > > > in the same way that the 'perfect' tense denotes an action that has finished > > > > and the 'progressive' tense denotes one that is continuing. > > > > Inchoative. > > Although I realize this is the more commonly used term, I am a little uneasy with > it. I feel like, at least as far as my English grammatical usage goes, the form > does not connote "beginning" of the action except perhaps obliquely. To me, > "about to go" and "going to go" aspectually describe a situation in which the > action has not *yet* begun. > > Does anyone else get this feeling too? >
Me too, and that's how I learned it. For me, "going to" is future, with a connotation of near future (like "aller" + inf. in French) and "about to" is a very near future, something that will happen in the next five minutes. "Prospective" seems rather right for "going to", but I would try to find another word for "about to". -- Christophe Grandsire Philips Research Laboratories -- Building WB 145 Prof. Holstlaan 4 5656 AA Eindhoven The Netherlands Phone: +31-40-27-45006 E-mail: