Frequentative
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Frequentative

In grammar, a frequentative form (abbreviated FREQ or FR) of a word is one that indicates repeated action, but is not to be confused with iterative aspect.[1] The frequentative form can be considered a separate but not completely independent word called a frequentative. The frequentative is no longer productive in English, but still is in some language groups, such as Finno-Ugric, Balto-Slavic, Turkic, etc.

English

English has -le and -er as frequentative suffixes. Some frequentative verbs surviving in English and their parent verbs are listed below. Additionally, some frequentative verbs are formed by reduplication of a monosyllable (e.g., coo-cooing, cf. Latin murmur). Frequentative nouns are often formed by combining two different vowel grades of the same word (as in teeter-totter, pitter-patter, chitchat, etc.)

frequentative original suffix
blabber blab -er
bobble bob -le
clamber climb -er
clutter clot -er
crackle crack -le
crumble crumb -le
cuddle couth (ME. cudde, cuþþed, OE. cúð) -le
curdle curd -le
dabble dab -le
dribble drip -le
dazzle daze -le
fizzle fizz -le
flitter flit -er
flutter float -er
fondle fond -le
glimmer gleam -er
gobble gob -le
gruntle grunt -le
haggle hag = hew, hack -le
jiggle jig -le
jostle joust -le
muddle mud -le
nestle nest -le
nuzzle nose -le
paddle pad -le
patter pat -er
prattle prate -le
prickle prick -le
pucker pock, poke -er
putter put -er
scuffle scuff -le
scuttle scud -le
slither slide -er
sniffle sniff -le
snuffle snuff -le
snuggle snug -le
sparkle spark -le
spatter spit -er
speckle speck -le
straddle stride -le
suckle suck -le
swaddle swathe -le
swagger swag -er
swindle swindan (OE. cognate, 'to waste away') -le
tickle tick -le
topple top -le
tousle tease (apart) -le
trample tramp -le
toggle tug -le
tumble tumben (Middle English) -le
twinkle twink -le
waddle wade -le
waggle wag -le
wrangle wring -le
wrestle wrest -le

The present tense in English usually has a frequentative meaning. For example, "I walk to work." means "I walk to work most days.", and would be true even if the speaker was not on their way to work there at the time.

Finnish

In Finnish, a frequentative verb signifies a single action repeated, "around the place" both spatially and temporally. The complete translation would be "go -- around aimlessly". There is a large array of different frequentatives, indicated by lexical agglutinative markers. In general, one frequentative is -:i-, and another -ele-, but it is almost always combined with something else. Some forms:

  • sataa -- sadella -- satelee "to rain -- to rain occasionally -- it rains occasionally"
  • ampua -- ammuskella -- ammuskelen "to shoot -- go shooting around -- I go shooting around"
  • juosta -- juoksennella -- juoksentelen "to run -- to run around (to and fro) -- I run around"
  • kirjoittaa -- kirjoitella -- kirjoittelen "to write -- to write (something short) occasionally -- I write "around""
  • järjestää -- järjestellä -- järjestelen "to put in order -- to arrange continuously, to play around -- I play around (with them) in order to put them in order"
  • heittää -- heittelehtiä -- heittelehdit "to throw -- to swerve -- you swerve"
  • loikata -- loikkia -- loikin "to jump once -- to jump (again and again) -- I jump (again and again)"
  • istua -- istuksia -- istuksit "to sit -- to sit (randomly somewhere), loiter -- you loiter there by sitting"

There are several frequentative morphemes, underlined above; these are affected by consonant gradation as indicated. Their meanings are slightly different; see the list, arranged infinitive~personal:

  • -ella~-ele-: bare frequentative.
  • -skella~-skele-: frequentative unergative verb, where the action is wanton (arbitrary)
  • -stella~-stele-: frequentative causative, where the subject causes something indicated in the root, as "order" vs. "to continuously try to put something in order".
  • -nnella~-ntele-: a frequentative, where an actor is required. The marker -nt- indicates a continuing effort, therefore -ntele- indicates a series of such efforts.
  • -elehtia~-elehdi-: movement that is random and compulsive, as in under pain, e.g. vääntelehtiä "writhe in pain", or heittelehtiä "to swerve"
  • -:ia-~-i-: a continuing action definitely at a point in time, where the action or effort is repeated.
  • -ksia~-ksi-: same as -i-, but wanton, cf. -skella

Frequentatives may be combined with momentanes, that is, to indicate the repetition of a short, sudden action. The momentane -ahta- can be prefixed with the frequentative -ele- to produce the morpheme -ahtele-, as in täristä "to shake (continuously)" -> tärähtää "to shake suddenly once" -> tärähdellä "to shake, such that a single, sudden shaking is repeated". For example, the contrast between these is that ground shakes (maa tärisee) continuously when a large truck goes by, the ground shakes once (maa tärähtää) when a cannon fires, and the ground shakes suddenly but repeatedly (maa tärähtelee) when a battery of cannons is firing.

Since the frequentative is a lexical, not a grammatical contrast, considerable semantic drift may have occurred.

For a list of different real and hypothetical forms, see:[2]

Loanwords are put into the frequentative form, if the action is such. If the action can be nothing else but frequentative, the "basic form" doesn't even exist, such as with "to go shopping".

  • surffata -- surffailla "to surf -- to surf (around in the net)"
  • *shopata -- shoppailla "*to shop once -- to go shopping"

Adjectives can similarly receive frequentative markers: iso -- isotella "big -- to talk big", or feikkailla < English fake "to be fake, blatantly and consistently".

Greek

In Homer and Herodotus, there is a past frequentative, usually called "past iterative", formed like the imperfect, but with an additional -sk- suffix before the endings.[3]

The same suffix is used in inchoative verbs in both Ancient Greek and Latin.

Hungarian

In Hungarian it is quite common and everyday to use frequentative.

Frequentative verbs are formed with the suffix -gat (-get after a front vowel; see vowel harmony). Also there is a so-called Template rule, which forces another vowel in between the base verb and the affix resulting in a word containing at least three syllables. Verbal prefixes (coverbs) do not count as a syllable.

Some verbs' frequentative forms have acquired an independent non-frequentative meaning. In these cases the three syllables rule is not applied as the form is not considered a frequentative. These words can be affixed with -gat again to create a frequentative meaning.

In rare cases non-verbs can be affixed by -gat to give them similar modification in meaning as to verbs. In most cases these non-verbs are obviously related to some actions, like a typical outcome or object. The resulting word basically has the same meaning as if the related verb were affixed with -gat.

The change in meaning of a frequentative compared to the base can be different depending on the base: The -gat affix can modify the occurrences or the intensity or both of an action. Occasionally it produces a specific meaning which is related but distinct from the original form's.

Examples:

frequentative root translation of root translation of -gat form explanation
fizetget fizet to pay paying for a longer period with probably less intensity the vowel harmony forced -GAT to take form of -get
kéreget kér to ask begging for a living because the resulting word must be at least three syllables long a new vowel is added to the word: kér-e-get
kiütöget (ki)üt hit (out) hit out sg. multiple times the prefixed coverb "ki" (out) doesn't count as a syllable so an extra vowel is added: (ki)üt-ö-get
hallgatgat hallgat to listen to listen multiple times but with possibly less intensity the original verb "hallgat" (to listen) is a syntactically imperfect frequentative form of "hall" (to hear)
rángat ránt to hitch to tousle this one is kind of an exception for the three syllable rule, however "rántogat" (ránt-o-gat) is uncommon but valid, and has a slightly bigger emphasis on the separate nature of each pull rather than a continuous shaking as in "rángat"
jajgat jaj ouch (a shout) to shout "jaj" multiple times, probably because of pain the original word is not a verb, so the three syllable rule is not applied
béget bee baa (onomatopoeia for a sheep) to shout baa multiple times same as above
mosogat mos to wash to do the dishes the frequentative form (mos-o-gat) has its own non-frequentative meaning
mosogatgat mosogat to do the dishes to do the dishes slowly and effortlessly as the frequentative "mosogat" has a non-frequentative meaning, it can be affixed by -GAT to make it frequentative
dolgozgat dolgozik to work to work with less effort and intensity, as in: "?k fizetgetnek, én dolgozgatok" (They pretend to pay me, I pretend to work.) the "-ik" at the end of "dolgozik" is an irregular ending which is only effective in third person singular, so -GAT sticks to "dolgoz" which is the root of the word

Latin

In Latin, frequentative verbs show repeated or intense action. They are formed from the supine stem with -t?re/-s?re, -it?re, -tit?re/-sit?re added.

  • ventit?re, 'come frequently or repeatedly' (< venio, 'come'; see Catullus 8, l. 4)
  • cant?re, '(continue to) sing' (< canere, 'sing a song')
  • curs?re, 'run around' (< currere, 'run')
  • dict?re, 'dictate' (< d?cere, 'speak, say')
  • ?ctit?re, 'zealously agitate' and agit?re, 'put into motion' (< agere, 'do, drive')
  • puls?re, 'push/beat around' (< pellere, 'push (once), beat')
  • iact?re, 'shake, disturb' (< iacere, 'throw, cast')
  • vers?re, 'turn often, keep turning' (< vertere, 'turn, revolve')

The deponent verb min?r? ('threaten') has frequentatives of both deponent and active form: minit?r? and minit?re.

Lithuanian

Lithuanian has a past frequentative (or iterative), which serves to express a single action repeated in the past. Starting from the infinitive without -ti, it is formed by adding the invariant morpheme -dav- followed by the regular past tense suffix of the first conjugation. For instance, dirb·ti ("to work", a first-conjugation verb), whose plain past tense is dirb·au ("I worked" or "I have worked"), has a past iterative of dirb·dav·au ("I used to work"). The six intersections of person and number map onto five distinct frequentative endings; there is no morphological distinction of number in the third person, nor of conjugation class in general.

  dirbti ("to work") nor?ti ("to want") skaityti ("to read")
1-sg. dirb·dav·au nor?·dav·au skaity·dav·au
2-sg. dirb·dav·ai nor?·dav·ai skaity·dav·ai
3-sg. dirb·dav·o nor?·dav·o skaity·dav·o
1-pl. dirb·dav·ome nor?·dav·ome skaity·dav·ome
2-pl. dirb·dav·ote nor?·dav·ote skaity·dav·ote
3-pl. dirb·dav·o nor?·dav·o skaity·dav·o

The closest relative of Lithuanian, Latvian, as well as the Samogitian dialect of the language, has no separate past tense to mark iterative aspect; in its place, however, both may express it by means of periphrasis. An auxiliary verb - m?gt in Latvian and liuob?ti in Samogitian - will then occupy the syntactic centre of the verb phrase (subject to conjugation), relegating the main verb to trail it as an (invariant) infinitive complement.

Consider the following three translations of the English sentence "We used to read a lot."

  • Lithuanian: Mes daug skaitydavome.
  • Samogitian: Mes liuobiam daug skait?t?.
  • Latvian: M?s m?dz?m daudz las?t.

Polish

In the Polish language, certain imperfective verbs ending in -a? denote repeated or habitual action.

  • je (to eat) -> jada? (to eat habitually)
  • i (to walk) -> chadza?.
  • widzie? (to see) -> widywa?
  • pisa? (to write) -> pisywa?
  • czyta? (to read) -> czytywa?

The interfix -yw- used to form many frequentative verbs has a different function for prefixed perfective verbs: it serves to create their imperfective equivalents. For instance, rozczytywa? (to try to read something barely legible) is simply an imperfective equivalent of rozczyta? (to succeed at reading something barely legible).

Russian

In the Russian language, the frequentative form of verbs to denote a repeated or customary action is produced by inserting the suffix -/-, often accompanied with a change in the root of the word (vowel alternation, change of the last root consonant).

  • (to see) -> (to see repeatedly)
  • (to sit) ->
  • (to walk) -> '
  • (to wear) ->
  • ? (to stroke) ->
  • (to write) -> ?
  • An interesting example is with the word (to take); an archaic usage recorded among hunters, normally used in the past tense, in hunter's boasting?, ?

meaning "used to take (quite a few) trophies".

Reduplication

The simplest way to produce a frequentative is reduplication, either of the entire word or of one of its phonemes. This is common in Austronesian languages such as Niuean, although reduplication also serves to pluralize and intensify nouns and adjectives.

See also

References

  1. ^ Bhat, D.N.S. (1999). The prominence of tense, aspect and mood. John Benjamins. pp. 53-56. ISBN 9781556199356. OCLC 909078918.
  2. ^ "ctl104mh.shtml". Ling.helsinki.fi. Retrieved .
  3. ^ Greek Grammar, par. 495: iterative imperfects and aorists.

Sources

  • Gildersleeve, B. L. (1895). Gildersleeve's Latin Grammar. Bolchazy-Carducci. ISBN 0-86516-477-0.

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

Frequentative
 



 



 
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