Slovak: perfective aspect as used for a general fact

nizzebro

Senior Member
Russian
Hi all,
The Czech language can use perfective verbs for a general fact and in the sense of "each time in such circumstances", unlike East Slavic languages where the perfective is rather limited to the image of a single event.

I'd like to know, how close the Slovak language is to Czech in this regard? The same use of aspects in general, or any differences?
 
  • nizzebro

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Give us, please, an example.
    These are examples where it's perfective in Czech but imperfective in Russian (taken from internet so I'm not sure about correctness as I'm not a speaker of Czech, unfortunately) :

    „V takových případech si teda musejí soudní referenti nějaký ten zajímavý trestní případ jednoduše vycucat z prstu.“ (Č., 278) - В таких случаях беднягам репортерам приходится это «интересное дельце» попросту высасывать из пальца. (Ч., 544)
    (Russian uses impf because it happens each time in mentioned cases)

    „...;
    kdykoliv se ta stará paní ukázala u okna nebo na dvorku, otevřel jsem honem okno,...“ (Č., 282) - Как только соседка показывалась во дворе или у окошка, я быстро отворял свое окно,.
    (Russian uses impf because of the "whenever" sense)

    „Tedy především hypotéza, kterou přijmeme, musí vzít v počet všechna daná fakta;...“ (Č., 88) - Прежде всего, надо сказать, что гипотеза, признаваемая приемлемой, должна включать в себя все имеющиеся факты. (Ч., 469)
    (Russian uses impf because of the stative meaning assuming any hypothesis of such kind, not a specific planned one)

    za třetí, že má jít s duchem doby a naučit se všemu, co je v jeho oboru nového; (Č., 205) - И, в-третьих, надо идти в ногу с эпохой и осваивать все новое по своей специальности. (Ч., 515)
    (Russian uses impf because it is rather a general practice, not a specific result)

    Sack i soud se rozhodli, že si nikoho ze zahraničních právníků nepustí do procesu. (P., 94) Зак и суд решили не подпускать к процессу никого из иностранных юристов. (П., 78)
    (Russian uses impf because they are going to do that in case of any attempt)


    Anyways, these showing the difference in respect to Russian are not so important, as my main point was whether there are cases (or more precisely, patterns of use) where the verb is perfective in the Czech phrase, and imperfective in the relevant Slovak one - or vice versa.
     
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    francisgranada

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    Thank you, now I understand your question (at lest I hope so ...).
    ... my main point was whether there are cases (or more precisely, patterns of use) where the verb is perfective in the Czech phrase, and imperfective in the relevant Slovak one - or vice versa.
    In my opinion the logic of the usage of perfective and imperfective verbs is exactly the same in Czech and Slovak.

    My ad hoc explanation is, that when something happens explicitly or implicitly repeatedly, then the perfective form can be used.

    (Not all the verbs have the "adequate" imperfective form, or they may have a bit different meaning or they may be used in different contexts. E.g. from your examples: naučit se vs. naúčat se, pustit vs. pouštět, ...)
     
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    nizzebro

    Senior Member
    Russian
    n my opinion the logic of the usage of perfective and imperfective verbs is exactly the same in Czech and Slovak.

    My ad hoc explanation is, that when something happens explicitly or implicitly repeatedly, then the perfective form can be used.

    However there may be also an other "problem": not all the verbs have the "adequate" imperfective form, or they may have a bit different meaning or used in different contexts. E.g. from your examples: naučit se vs. naúčat se, pustit vs. pouštet, ...
    Thank you. Yes, of course, there are unavoidable lexical variations (in East Slavic these are probably solved by more intensive use of prefixes).

    Anyway, if we take these sentences:
    Země obíhá kolem Slunce po elipse s velmi malou excentricitou dráhy.
    Země oběhne Slunce za 365,2564 průměrných slunečních dní (1 siderický rok).

    As I understand, the second one uses the perfective form because there is a complete frame that is repeated, so we are like stressing the sense "it takes 1 year for it (each time) to do that " - while the former sentence just describes its path and so pictures that as a continuous motion.
    Same principle in Slovak, right?
     
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    francisgranada

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    Same principle in Slovak, right?

    Yes, concretely in Slovak: "Zem obieha okolo Slnka ..." and "Zem obehne Slnko ...".

    As I understand, the second one uses the perfective form because there is a complete frame that is repeated, so we are like stressing the sense "it takes 1 year for it (each time) to do that " - while the former sentence just describes its path and so pictures that as a continuous motion.
    I think your understanding is OK. However "Země oběhne Slunce" grammatically does not necessarily mean that it happens repeatedly (it might happen only once, e.g. tomorrow). Instead, "Země obíhá kolem Slunce" implicitely means that it "typically/repeatedly/continuously used to happen"...

    (Of course, we know what is happening every day :) , so our concrete interpretation of these sentences may be influenced by this fact...)
     

    nizzebro

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Of course, we know what is happening every day :) , so our concrete interpretation of these sentences may be influenced by this fact...)

    It seems that "za (365 dní)" is the trigger in this case... I guess that with obíhá, this preposition would tend to be used as "behind". (I'm not sure that the prepositional patterns are the same, though, and only mentioning the very principle - whether the adjunct stands for completion, or just qualifies the process flow).


    Ďakujem Vám. :)
     

    francisgranada

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    I guess that with obíhá, this preposition would tend to be used as "behind".
    Yes.

    (I'm not sure that the prepositional patterns are the same, though, and only mentioning the very principle - whether the adjunct stands for completion, or just qualifies the process flow).
    The preposition "za" is used primarily in "spacial sense" (probably in all Slavic languages), i.e. "behind". In Western Slavic "za" is used also in "temporal sense", meaning approximately "after a certain period of time" ...

    ("za 365 dní" seems to me a "secondary solution", as in Czech and Slovak there is no preposition that expresses exactly this idea. This is only my personal impression.)

    ********************

    For curiosity and better understanding, how do you say in Russian "Země obíhá kolem Slunce po elipse" and "Země oběhne Slunce za rok" ?

    Ďakujem Vám. :)

    Hе стоит! :)
    (I don't know if this is an adequate answer in this case ...)
     
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    nizzebro

    Senior Member
    Russian
    In Western Slavic "za" is used also in "temporal sense", meaning approximately "after a certain period of time" ...
    Yes, same in the East.

    For curiosity and better understanding, how do you say in Russian "Země obíhá kolem Slunce po elipse" and "Země oběhne Slunce za rok" ?
    Земля обращается вокруг Солнца по эллипсу (more precisely, по эллиптической орбите); Земля обращается вокруг Солнца за год (probably a better wording would be Период обращения Земли составляет один год). The issue here is that we typically use a rotation-related verb, but, in principle, we could also say Земля обходит вокруг Солнца за год/по эллипсу (only that planet walking/going might sound a bit simplistic in Russian). Either way, only an imperfective phrase is used for such patterns; a perfective one would refer to a single future passage.
    (I don't know if this is an adequate answer in this case ...)
    Completely fine, as a short polite response.
     
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    francisgranada

    Senior Member
    Hungarian
    Земля обращается вокруг Солнца по эллипсу (more precisely, по эллиптической орбите); Земля обращается вокруг Солнца за год (probably a better wording would be Период обращения Земли составляет один год). The issue here is that we typically use a rotation-related verb, but, in principle, we could also say Земля обходит вокруг Солнца за год/по эллипсу (only that planet walking/going might sound a bit simplistic in Russian). Either way, only an imperfective phrase is used for such patterns; a perfective one would refer to a single future pass.
    Thanks for your detailed answer :). It is really interesting.

    Using the verb "otočiť" (=оборотить) in Slovak it would be: "Zem sa otočí (perf.) okolo Slnka za (jeden) rok" and "Zem sa otáča (imperf.) okolo Slnka po eliptickej dráhe" .

    Using the verb ísť/chodiť in Slovak it would be: "Zem obíde (perf. transitive) Slnko za (jeden) rok" and "Zem obchádza (imperf. transitive) Slnko po eliptickej dráhe".

    ********************
    Some of the imperfective verbs in Slovak had slightly changed their exact original meaning or usage and secondary imperfective forms have been created. E.g. obchádza, prichádza (instead of obchodí, prichodí), chodieva, čítava, sedáva, jedáva, ... (I am not sure if it has something to do with the present discussion, but I have the impression that in this case the Russian maintains better the original Slavic "situation").
     
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