Up: Primarily aspectual verbs.
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Another variable feature of Tamil aspectual verbs is that there are pragmatic
considerations that are involved in the choice of whether to mark aspect or
not. Since aspect is not an obligatory category, it may or not be present.
However, there is a tendency not to mark aspectual distinctions in certain
constructions, even if they might be technically grammatical. The reasons for
this are pragmatic ones, having to do with politeness, shared perceptions, the
nature of truth propositions, etc. There is also a tendency to use aspectual
marking to add speaker commentary to the sentence, even with the `purely'
aspectual markers, but especially with the attitudinal ones.
- Aspect marking is an optional category; unlike tense or some other
obligatory categories, it is not required. There is a polarity in notions
such as going/coming, known and unknown, what is culturally
- Aspect marking occurs most often in positive declarative sentences,
rarely in negative, but is common in both positive and negative
- Even in non-attitudinal aspect-marking, can be used expressively to
comment, to deprecate, etc. We are already noted the form ´¢»Õç (LT
´±ÅÕç kattiru `be learning', whose illocutionary force is sarcastic
or ironic, since X enge katt-irukkiinga (which literally means
`Where did you learn X') has sarcastic illocutionary force: `Where (the
hell) did you learn X? (i.e., you don't know X.)'
- Aspect may be bi-polar, paradoxical; meaning `intentional' in one
context and `accidental' in another. (`Ramaswamy cut his finger/hair')
Sat Nov 2 21:16:08 EST 1996