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This page still pertains to UD version 1.

Aspect: aspect

Aspect is a feature that specifies duration of the action in time, whether the action has been completed etc.

In Ukrainian, aspect is considered a lexical feature of verbs. While many imperfective verbs have morphologically related perfective counterparts, it is not a regular system and the two verbs are represented by different lemmas.

Imp: imperfect aspect

The action took / takes / will take some time span and there is no information whether and when it was / will be completed.


Perf: perfect aspect

The action has been / will have been completed. Since there is emphasis on one point on the time scale (the point of completion), this aspect does not work well with the present tense. Ukrainian morphology can create present forms of perfective verbs but these actually have a future meaning.


There is a small group of verbs, usually borrowed, of the Latin origin, which have the same form for both the perfect and imperfect aspect. It is only possible (although not always) to discern the aspect on the basis of the context they are used in. Verbs that carry two aspectual meanings are called biaspectual in the academic Ukrainian grammar.

Even though originally Ukrainian naturalised such verbs by adding a relevant prefix to the perfective variant, thus creating two lemmas instead of one borrowed verb, there was a period in the language development when prefixed forms were consistently eradicated in prescriptive grammars. Therefore presently one can find prefixed and prefixless perfective forms of the same verbs in different texts, e.g. абонувати  “to subscribe” (aspect unclear without a wider context, see examples below) and заабонувати  “to subscribe” (perfect).


If the context is sufficient to define the aspect such verbs are used in, the respective one is assigned. In the cases when the context does not suffice (as, for example, in the sentence above used without a temporal expression), according to UD conventions, no value for aspect is assigned.

Aspect in other languages: [bg] [bm] [cs] [en] [et] [fr] [ga] [grc] [hu] [hy] [it] [pcm] [ru] [sl] [tr] [u] [uk] [urj]