Aspect: An element of INFL phrase in Igbo syntax
This paper examined aspect as an element of INFL phrase in Igbo, the verb forms use in expressing aspect, their inflectional patterns, how they are marked and their tonal behaviours. The work adopted a descriptive method in the analysis of the data. It identified different verb forms, participle verb forms and inflectional affixes used in expressing aspect in Igbo language. The inflectional affixes are bound morphemes which are overtly morphologically marked on the verb stems in the syntactic structures. The aspectual markers are hosted by the verb stems with their distinctive tones. A verb form can mark two aspects simultaneously in the syntactic structures. The auxiliaries na and ga are employed in expressing progressive and habitual aspects. Ga is also used to express future and perfective aspects. The presence of the obligatory harmonizing vowel prefix a-/e- is significant in the participle verb forms which are used in expressing aspects in Igbo. The aspectual markers and the auxiliaries which mark aspects in Igbo are dominated in INFL phrase. Tone plays vital role in Igbo aspects. The rule of vowel harmony was also observed.
Key Words: Aspect, INFL Phrase, Aux, X-bar, Progressive Aspect
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