Tense and Aspect in the Languages of Europe

Author : Osten Dahl

Publication date : 2000

Bibliographical references :

Dahl, Östen (ed.). 2000. Tense and aspect in the languages of Europe. Empirical approaches to language typology ; 20-6. Berlin ; New York: Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 789-818.


This is a set of three questionnaires about :

  1. the future time reference
  2. the perfect
  3. the progressive aspect

The main purpose is to elicit data about 'tense and aspect' in the European languages. The first questionnaire, which focuses on 'future', links tense and aspects as following:
- progressive
- prospectivity
- perfectivity/telicity/inchoativity

The second questionnaire, on 'perfect', aims to "investigate the form, meaning and use of the perfect and similar or related grammatical categories [...] in various languages." (Dahl, 2000: 801)

Finally, the questionnaire on 'the progressive aspect' is designed to analyse this aspect according to many different settings, such as valency, the type of verbs, their semantics, and so on.

Protocol summary

For each questionnaire:

- Part 1: the linguists have to translate the list of English sentences given in the target language. 
- Part 2: then, they have to answer the analytical questions related to the sentences of part 1.

Development context

These three questionnaires were designed for the Eurotyp project (2000).

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