An interesting thread about a complex topic.
tadwelessar wrote:The aspect of the verb exists also in latin, there are two aspects:
- "perfectum" for perfect, pluperfect, future perfect
it denotes a concluded action (perfectum is indeed the past participle of perficio, is, perfeci, perfectum, ere = to conclude)
- "infectum" for present, imperfect, future
denotes an unconcluded (i.e. continue) action (inficio, is, infeci, infectum, ere = don't conclude)
I say this about latin (I know this is the Learning Greek forum!) because I'm only a beginner in greek but, that I know, in greek it's the same.
I don't think this is quite true. Ancient Greek preserves the IE distinction between three different 'types of action' or 'aspects'. This distinction finds morphological expression in the 'tense' stems of the present, aorist, and perfect, which primarily distinguish aspect, not time.
Present - continuing, progressive, durative
Aorist - momentary, atomic
Perfect - a present state persisting from past action
It is generally safe to consider the aorist a temporal past tense when it is in the indicative mood.