A Comparative Analysis of Tense in the Standard Ígbò and the Ìmìlìkè Dialects

  • Juliana Chizọbam Eze
  • Ifeoma M. Nweze


This paper examines the syntactic and semantic analytic descriptions of tense in the standard Ígbò and Ìmìlìkè dialect with emphasis on both the affirmative and negative constructions. The study was inspired by the dearth of scholarly work in this aspect of the Igbo language (Niger Congo: Nigeria). The theoretical framework of Bull’s (1963) analysis of Tense and Aspect is adopted. The analysis was justified with the use of concrete examples given from the standard Ígbò and the dialect. The findings reveal that in addition to the occurrence of tense in the standard Ígbò and Ìmìlìkè dialect, there is also a morphological opposition between the present and past tense in both dialects. However, it was observed that there exist tonal distinctions which occur in the derivation of the different tense systems in both dialects in the affirmative and negative constructions. It also reveals that lexical units interact with tone and the components of INFIL (Inflection) to derive either the affirmative or the negative construction appropriately.


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eISSN: 1595-1413