[b-hebrew] Aspect

Ken Penner pennerkm at mcmaster.ca
Thu Jun 10 14:17:57 EDT 2004

> Could you please refer 
> to scholars who believe in an aspectual interpretation of Hebrew 
> verbs who say that YIQTOL has one aspect in one context and another 
> aspect or no aspect in other contexts?

Waltke and O'Connor describe YIQTOL as "non-perfective" because it is not
always "imperfective":

"The (historically long) prefix conjugation (yaqtulu) cannot be described
solely in the terms of imperfective aspect. In this form the notions of
aspect and time both blend (imperfective aspect in past and present time)
and separate (aorist in future time). Sperber and Hughes are partially right
in describing it as a universal tense. And it may signify more than a
blending of tense and aspect or pure tense; it may also signify either real
or unreal moods-the indicative as well as degrees of dubiety and volition.
In short: a form that can signify any time, any mood, and imperfective
aspect (but not perfective), is not imperfective but non-perfective, "a more
than opposite" of the suffix conjugation. (The term "aorist," meaning
without limits or boundaries, is not inappropriate.)" (29.6e)

Rolf, the most recent work of yours I have is "The NWT´s Translation of the
Hebrew Verbal System - with Particular Stress on Waw Consecutive" (2003).
Have you revised your views at all since then? Do you have something more
recent I could read?


Ken Penner

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