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Гос филология / Гос филология / 17. The grammatical category of aspect

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The grammatical category of aspect. According to their formal properties English verbs are divided into two classes: regular and irregular. The class of irregular verbs are the verbs most frequently used because they name everyday routines and activities.

According to their function verbs are subdivided into notional and functional. In between these two subclasses there are the so-called semi-notional verbs. Here belong modal (can, may, must, should, ought), modalized (seem, appear happen, chance turn out prove), aspective verbs (begin, continue, stop). Unlike notional verbs which have a full nominative value, semi-notional verbs possess a partial nominative value. They do not name actions as notional verbs do but just add rather modal or aspective characteristics to the notional verbs they accompany. Functional verbs are further subdivided into auxiliaries, links, substitutes and intensifiers.

According to their grammatical semantics verbs are divided into dynamic and static , transitive and intransitive, durative and terminative. These semantic characteristics are related to the grammatical categories of aspect, time correlation and voice. As many verbs in English are polysemantic these features refer not to the whole of the verbal lexeme, but to its concrete meanings. A verb may be transitive in one of its meaning and intransitive in the other.

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