1%homeless wrote:Latin: Pluperfect – Perfect – Imperfect – Present – Future Perfect – Future.
I’m sketchy about the Imperfect because it is a continuous action that can extend all the way back to Pluperfect, but what do you think of the placement in the time line?
I think you'll need some different lines to indicate action completion.
I’m going to do a Greek one next, but I’m having a hard time dealing with aspect versus tense. Should I only put tense forms in the time line? Although people say aspect isn't time based it's still hard to believe that it isn't.
Aspect is not time based. However, most languages don't have a full chart of verb forms for all the aspect/tense combinations (unlike Bulgarian, I think), so there is some confusion there. Here's some junky ascii art of my attempt (including Greek):
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<...past perf..!> |...aorist...||now| <...fut. perf..!>
If the verb space ends in a bar ( | ), that means action completion. If the end has an arrow, that means the action is continuing on. Most actions point back into the past to indicate that most of the time the nature of the start of the action isn't encoded in these verbs.
If the verb space ends in bang-arrow ( !> ) that means that the result
of the action continues on into the future. So, "I have shut the door" - a perfect - implies strongly that the door is still shut. But "I shut the door" simply describes a past action.
Although I have put the past perfect further in the past than the imperfect or present perfect, there is no real reason to do this. It merely means that an action was completed and that the result continued in the past ("I had shut the door"). This action may occur at the same time as an imperfect ("I had shut the door while I was singing 'Wozzek.'")