Chapter published in:Perfects in Indo-European Languages and Beyond
Edited by Robert Crellin and Thomas Jügel
[Current Issues in Linguistic Theory 352] 2020
► pp. 484–503
The perfect in Medieval and Modern Greek
The present-anterior/stative function of the ancient perfect placed it outside the core verbal system, which was organised around a binary (perfective/imperfective) aspectual opposition. By the early middle ages the increasingly marginal perfect had disappeared as a functionally discrete category, its role subsumed by the aorist (past perfective), and the notion of continuing relevance determined contextually. The rare pluperfect was also abandoned, though periphrastic replacements continued the overt, if optional, expression of relative-past meaning, a function later strengthened by contact with Romance. A perfect counterpart appeared only in modern times, however, functioning as a past perfective with a compulsory current-relevance reading, but remaining optional in that the aorist still carries present-anterior implications in appropriate contexts. Other periphrases were introduced in later antiquity specifically to express stativity. Most have continued in stative function into Modern Greek, though intense contact with Latin/Romance also encouraged present-anterior and relative-past functions locally at various times.
Keywords: anteriority, current relevance, loss and renewal, periphrases, Romance influence, stativity
Published online: 23 September 2020
Editions of Ancient Greek texts
Demosthenes, De Corona : Samuel H. Butcher & William Rennie
eds. 1903 Demosthenis orationes. Vol. 1. Oxford: Clarendon. http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3atext%3a1999.01.0071%3aspeech%3d18. (October 11 2018.)
Plutarch, Titus Flamininus : Perrin, Bernadotte
1921 Plutarch. Plutarch’s lives: Agis and Cleomenes, and Tiberius and Caius Gracchus. Philopoemen and Flamininus (Loeb Classical Library 102). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Plut.+Flam.+1&fromdoc=Perseus%3Atext%3A2008.01.0115. (October 11 2018.)
Editions of medieval literary texts
Assizes B: Σάθας, Κωνσταντίνος Ν.
Chronicle of the Morea (H): Schmitt, John
1904 The Chronicle of Morea, Τὸ Χρονικὸν τοῦ Μορέως. A history in political verse relating the establishment of feudalism in Greece by the Franks in the thirteenth century. Edited in two parallel texts from the MSS of Copenhagen and Paris, with introduction, critical notes and indices. London: Methuen. [Reprinted 1967 Groningen: Bouma’s Boekhuis and 2003 Athens: Πελεκάνος] [14th c.]
Chronicle of the Turkish Sultans : Ζώρας, Γεωργιου Θ.
Constantine Porphyrogenitus, On the administration of the Empire : Moravcsik, Gyula
Digenes Akrites (E): Jeffreys, Elizabeth M.
Don Quixote : Κεχαγιόγλου, Γιώργος & Άννα Ταμπάκη
Kartanos, Old and New Testaments : Κακουλίδη-Πάνου, Ελένη
Life of Aesop : Eideneier, Hans
Malalas, Chronicle : Thurn, Hans
Tale of Alexander (rhymed version): Holton, David
Collections of medieval non-literary texts
Cataldi Palau, Annaclara
2003 Correspondence between Manuel Provataris Scriptor Graecus in the Vatican Library (1556–1571), and some of his fellow scribes. In Charalambos Dendrinos, Jonathan Harris, Eirene Harvalia-Crook & Judith Herrin (eds.), Porphyrogenita: Essays on the history and literature of Byzantium and the Latin East in honour of Julian Chrysostomides, 461–491. Aldershot: Ashgate.
Mertzios, Kōnstantinos D./Μέρτζιος Κωνσταντίνος Δ
Aerts, Willem J.
Chatzidakis, Geōrgiu N./Χατζιδάκις Γ. Ν
Holton, David, Peter Mackridge & Irene Philippaki-Warburton
Holton, David, Geoffrey C. Horrocks, Marjolijne Janssen, Tina Lendari, Io Manolessou & Notis Toufexis
Horrocks, Geoffrey C.
Janssen, Marjolijne C.