It's likely problematic trying to conceptualize this using English examples. The ablaut in the irregular verb "throw" (throw > threw) isn't comparable to the use of Greek's syllabic augment. And the past tense marker '-ed' is a later development in English.Daniel Semler wrote: ↑August 16th, 2019, 7:12 pmNo, my question is very simple. As an example, how is "I threw the ball" spatial ? I can understand that having the thrown the ball it is now remote from me. But the action itself was at the time very close to me indeed - my arm did it while attached to the rest of me. So how is a verbal action, completed, in progress or prospective spatially near or remote ? I get that additional phrases and so on could describe an action occurring remotely from, or near to, me, but I don't think that's what is meant here is it ?
I can accept that should such a concept exist and be useful in language that some morpheme might bear that load but my question is in some sense before that point.
Languages like archaic Greek and Sanskrit are much quite closer to PIE, so they provide a much better basis for analysis than Modern English, assuming that these diachronic theories of language development from PIE are sound.
I'll just keep quoting from this source, in case you don't have access to it:
Pg. 355, Ibid.
And even though this doesn't have much to do with tense/aspect, Greek does employ an elaborate system of adding prepositional (spacial) prefixes to its verbs (ἀνα-, κατα-, etc).Originally an adverb, *é, or better *hie-, meaning "yonder, there>> at that time, then," the augment could be prefixed to a verb along with other adverbial prefixes, although it had to be prefixed to the primary stem first and so come between the primary stem and other adverbial prefixes.
Russian (the so-called "aspectual language par excellence") does the same thing with prepositional prefixes as Greek. But the verbs behave differently when prefixes are added to the imperfective (base) form of a verb (which is present tense). It changes the aspect to perfective, thus pushing the temporal reference into the future. Such prefixed verbs must adopt an imperfective suffix in order to center them back in the present tense.