This article may be too technical for most readers to understand. Please help improve it to make it understandable to non-experts, without removing the technical details. (April 2011) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
In linguistics, semelfactive is a class of aktionsart or lexical aspect (verb aspects that reflect the temporal flow of the denoted event, lexically incorporated into the verb's root itself rather than grammatically expressed by inflections or auxiliary verbs). The event represented by a semelfactive verb is punctual (instantaneous, taking just a moment), perfective (treated as a complete action with no explicit internal temporal structure), and atelic (not having an end). Semelfactive verbs include "blink", "sneeze", and "knock".
The idea of semelfactive as a category of lexical aspect was first posited by Bernard Comrie in addition to the more commonly known categories such as verbs of Activity, Accomplishment, Achievement, and State. The term's use in the realm of grammatical aspect is analogous in meaning to "iterative".
- Bernard Comrie, 1976. Aspect. Cambridge University Press.
- Carlota Smith, 1991. The parameter of aspect. Kluwer.
|This grammar-related article is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|