۱۳•۱. Lexical Aspect of Verb Phrases

The grammatical category lexical aspect of a verb phrase marks the manner of its progression. It is a semantic feature, and therefore refers to both verb phrases and also their verbal roots. This feature differentiates between lexical and grammatical aspects.

Numerous subcategories of lexical aspect are defined, primarily to understand the grammar of Slavic languages. However in Persian grammar, just a few subcategories suffice for semantic categorization:

  1. A stative verb phrase does not involve the accomplishment of a process:

    من یک کتاب داشتم.

    او برادرِ من است.

    فرامرز همه چیز را می‌دانست.

    او می‌تواند همه‌یِ ما را از میان ببرد.

    می‌خواهم او را ببینم.

  2. Dynamic verb phrases show the accomplishment or the taking place of a process. These verb phrases can be divided into two groups:
    • Punctual verb phrases represent the transition between two states (from the end of a state to the beginning of the other one):

      او رویِ صندلی نشست. (from ننشستگی to نشستگی)

      راه بیافتید! (from بر جا بودن to در حرکت بودن)

      بچّه‌ها خواب‌شان برد. (from بیدار بودن to در خواب بودن)

      It is notable that verb phrases from the verbal root /mɒn/ (infinitive /mɒndæn/ ماندن) are punctual in Persian.

    • A durative verb phrase shows the running of a process:

      کتاب‌ها را به اتاقِ خود ببر!

      من ماشین را خواهم راند.

      منصور فرش را گسترد.

It is notable that verb phrases whose verbal roots are stative can also appear as punctual and perfective. In this case, the verb phrases refers only to the start time of the expressed state:

او از تهدیدهایِ مردِ نقاب‌دار ترسید (= ترس برش داشت).

دانست (= متوجّه شد) که برادرش به او دروغ می‌گوید.

پدرم خوابید (= به خواب فرو رفت).

The grammatical relevance of this categorization in Persian is discussed in detail in the article of Simindokht Jahanpanah Tehrani (in مجلهء زبانشناسی, ۲nd issue, page 64).

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