Monday, October 21, 2019

Definition and Examples of Defective Verbs in English

Definition and Examples of Defective Verbs in English In English grammar, defective verb is a traditional term for a  verb that doesnt exhibit all the typical forms of a conventional  verb.   English modal verbs (can, could, may, might, must, ought, shall, should, will, and  would)  are defective in that they lack distinctive  third-person singular and nonfinite forms.  Ã‚   As illustrated  below, discussions of defective verbs commonly  appeared in 19th-century school grammars; however,  modern linguists and grammarians rarely use the term. David Crystals Take In grammar, [defective is] a traditional description of words which do not display all the rules of the class to which they belong. The English modal verbs, for example, are defective in that they do not permit the usual range of verb forms, such as an infinitive or participle forms (*to may,  *shalling, etc.). Because of its pejorative connotations in general usage, the term needs to be used cautiously. It tends to be avoided  in modern linguistic analysis (which talks more in terms of irregular forms and exceptions to rules), but will be encountered in studies of linguistic historiography. The distinction between defective and irregular needs to be appreciated: a defective form is a missing form; an irregular form is present, but does not conform to the rule governing the class to which it belongs.(David Crystal, A  Dictionary of Linguistics and Phonetics, 6th ed. Blackwell, 2008) Beware and Begone Some verbs are termed  defective;  they are such as want some of the parts ordinarily ascribed to verbs.  Beware  is a  defective verb being  used  only  in the imperative or to give a caution. . . .  Begone  may be accounted another  defective verb  like  beware.  Begone  is a compound, made up of  be  and  gone,  that is  get  away; and  beware  is composed of  be  and  ware  found in  aware,  and  wary.(John R. Beard, Lessons in English, LXII. The Popular Educator, Vol. 3, 1860) The Defective  Copula Is A defective verb  is one which has not all the usual verbal forms.  Is, the copula, is irregular. It is also defective as it has no imperative or autonomous forms, no verbal noun or verbal adjective.(Irish-English/English-Irish Easy Reference Dictionary. Roberts Rinehart, 1998) George Campbell on the Defective Verb Ought [I]n order to express the past with the  defective verb ought, we must use the perfect of the infinitive, and say for example, he ought to have done it; this in that verb being the only possible way of distinguishing the past from the present.(George Campbell, The Philosophy of Rhetoric, Volume 1, 1776) Discussions of Defective Verbs in 19th-Century School  Grammars What do you mean by a  Defective Verb?A  Defective Verb  is a Verb that is imperfect; that is, that cannot be conjugated through all the Moods and Tenses; such as the Verb Ought, which has  just been repeated.Which are the Defective Verbs?The Auxiliary Verbs are in general defective, because they have not any Participles; neither do they admit another helping Verb to be placed before them.Repeat the Defective Verbs.The Defective Verbs are, Do, Shall, Will, Can, May, Let, Must, Ought.How are the Defective Verbs used?They are always joined to the Infinitive Mood of some other Verb; as for example, I dare say, I ought to learn my lesson.Must implies necessity, as I  must do well, i.e. it is necessary that I should, or I am obliged to do so: why? because I ought, i.e. it is my duty to do well.Are the Auxiliary Verbs Have, and Am, or Be, Defective Verbs?No; they are  perfect, and formed like other Verbs.(Ellin Devis,  The Accidence, or, First Rudiments of English Grammar, 17 th ed., 1825) A List of Defective Verbs Defective verbs are those that can be used only in some particular modes and tenses. They are few in number and are as follows: ambeencancouldmaymightshallshouldwaswillwould Various Discussions on Defective Verbs Love  is not a  defective  verb;  you can use it in any mood and tense. You can say, I love, I loved, I have loved, I had loved, I shall or will love, I shall have loved, I may, can or must love: but  can  is a  defective verb.  You can say  I  can,  but you cannot say I have can, I had can, I shall can or will can,  I  may  can,  or  must  can.(J.H. Hull,  Lectures on the English Language: Comprehending the Principles and Rules of  Syntactical Parsing on a  New and Highly Improved System,  8th ed., 1834) A  defective  verb  is that which wants some of the modes and tenses; while an  irregular  verb  has all the modes and tenses, though  irregularly  formed.(Rufus William Bailey,  English Grammar: A Simple, Concise, and Comprehensive Manual of the English  Language,  10th ed., 1855)   Verbs which are not used in all the moods and tenses are called Defective. But the student must not  suppose  from this that Defective constitutes a separate or fourth class  of verb. This is not at all the case.  Quoth,  for  example,  is a  Defective  verb, but also Intransitive. Again wit is a Defective verb, but also Transitive. Again, may is a Defective verb, but also Auxiliary.(John Collinson Nesfield,  English Grammar Past and Present: With Appendices on Prosody, Synonyms, and  Other Outlying Subjects, 1898)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.