preterite question again

Rodney K. Duke dukerk at
Fri Jun 18 09:25:06 EDT 1999

Dear Colleagues,

I posted a similar form of the following question about a week ago and
got no response.  Perhaps people thought I was issuing a position or a
challenge rather than raising a question that I really have, or perhaps
people were just burnt out discussing the topic.  Here is my question

I  have accepted the preterite theory for explaining wayyiqtol for
years.  Now I wonder if a review of the same linguistic evidence from
the perspective of the question (Does the form 'grammaticalize' tense,
or is time being indicated through pragmatic factors?) and through the
observations of discourse grammar would yield the same the results.  Are
some of you and our other expert colleagues who work with Akkadian,
Ugaritic, et al exploring such questions and re-examining foundational
conclusions/assumptions?  Are you/they thoroughly convinced by the
evidence that the short prefixed form is marked for tense rather than
for "aspect"?  (Is anyone on conversant terms with a former professor of
mine, Dr. Rykle Borger, who I hope is still at work at Goettingen
University and not retired, who could pursue this question with him?)

Rodney K. Duke
Dept. of Phil. & Rel., Appalachian State Univ., Boone, NC 28608
(O) 828-262-3091, (FAX) 828-262-6619, dukerk at

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