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Verbs of motion determinate and indeterminate

One final set of verbs, the verbs of motion, require separate treatment with Inspect to aspect These verbs have a further subdivision within the imper-tectrve aspect, known as 'indeterminate' and 'determinate' (sometimes termed 'multidirectional' and 'unidirectional', respectively) The most corn-Eton verbs belonging to this category are

Imperfective Perfective Meaning

Indeterminate Determinate

ходити іти/йти піти to go (by foot)

їздити їхати поїхати to go (by vehicle)

носити нести понести to carry (by foot)

возити везти повезти to convey (vehicle)

водити вести повести to lead (on foot)

літати летіти полетіти to fly

плавати пливти попливти to swim

бігати бігти побігти to run

Note that it is from the determinates that perfectives are formed, without exception by adding the prefix пo-, and without a change in the basic meaning of the verb (other than 'to set off'). Perfectives with the same prefix can also be generated from the indeterminates (i.e. походити, поносити, поплавати), but these verbs express the notion of 'walking', 'carrying', 'swimming', and so on, 'for a little while', rather than the purely perfective idea of the onset or completion of an action. As with all other imperfective verbs, both sets of imperfective verbs of motion have a present tense in addition to the past and future, while the perfectives can express only past and future meaning. Note that most of the determinates are consonant-stem verbs, while most of the indeterminates are -и- type verbs.

When other prefixes are used (those that alter the meaning of the basic verb m addition to its aspect), a new imperfective-perfective pair is formed, thus

Imperfective Perfective Meaning

приходити прийти to come, arrive

переходити перейти to cross (over), go across

Note that the place of stress shifts m the new imperfective: ходити but приходити, переходити, and so on.


The sequence of topics discussed below will be (1) the infinitive, (2) the non-past, (3) the past, (4) the future, (5) the imperative, and (6) participles and gerunds.


As the use of the Ukrainian verb is to such an extent a function of its aspect, we present here the notions of tense, sequence of actions, and the imperative under the global umbrella of 'aspect'.


The basic distribution of tenses vis-a-vis aspect was described: the imperfective verb has all three basic tenses (past, present, and future) while the perfective verb is limited to two (past and future) by virtue of the notion of 'completed' action:


Кожного дня Маша ходить до школи. Every day Masha goes to school.

Іван Франко був письменником. Ivan Franko was a writer.

Батько працював на заводі. Father worked in a factory.

Ми дуже любимо танцювати. We really like to dance.

Чи будеш відпочивати літом? Will you rest (this) summer?

У школі діти читатимуть (будуть In school the children will be reading

читати) українську літературу. Ukrainian literature.


Його виключили з партії. Не was expelled from the party.

Н арешті Леся дописала книжку віршів Lesja finally finished writing the book of verse.

Зайдеш до мене увечері? Will you visit me (come by) this evening?

Запишу тобі свою адресу. I'll write down my address for you.

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