Rose, Sarah (Sarah R.) (1997) Tense and aspect in the Vetālapañcaviṅśati, a work of late classical Sanskrit. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.
PDF (Migrated (PDF/A Conversion) from original format: (application/pdf))
- Accepted Version
Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
The loss of many of the finite verbal forms of Sanskrit between the Vedic period (1200- 700 B.C.) and the Classical period (400-1700 A.D.) has been well documented (Burrow 1955; Taraporewala 1967; Pap 1990; Masica 1991). By the Classical period, the three finite past tenses, the aorist, perfect and imperfect, had "fallen together" and were being used interchangeably to relate past events (Taraporewala 1967:76; Misra 1968:62; Whitney 1889/1967:201). -- This thesis investigated verbal forms of a text of late Classical Sanskrit, the Vetālapañcaviṅśati, ‘Twenty Five Tales of a Demon', with a view to discovering some of the directions taken in the post-Vedic process of "rebuilding" the verbal system. -- Jambhaladatta's version of the Vetālapañcaviṅśati was found to contain two systems used to indicate past events: the 'archaic' (including the aorist, imperfect and perfect) and the 'innovative' (including the P-oriented participle -ta and the A-oriented participle -tavant). The three 'old' tenses showed no significant semantic differences, consistent with their acknowledged "collapse", although the perfect did show a discourse function of indicating "finality". The P-oriented -ta participle was used three times as often as the A-oriented -tavant participle, indicating that in the 'new’ system, the syntactic shift from A- to P-orientation (as in Hock 1986) was well underway. -- The Historical Present, consistent with its function in all periods of the language, was heavily used for the "lively" narration of past events, both as a main verb, and as the auxiliary component of analytic forms. -- The 'new’ system also showed numerous analytic aspectual forms. To indicate imperfective aspect, constructions involving the present participle plus auxiliaries ✓sthā 'to stand’, ✓ās 'to stay,sit', and vidyate<✓vid ‘to find' were used extensively. The auxiliary vidyate was noted to be a recategorized middle voice verb, with features of both A- and P- orientation. Retrospective aspect was regularly indicated by constructions involving the PPP combined with the auxiliary ✓as 'to be; this construction was especially common in direct speech. -- The increase in analytic forms, clearly marked for imperfective aspect, was considered to be a strategy to redress an imbalance in the 'old' system of preterite tenses where imperfective aspect was under represented.
|Item Type:||Thesis (Masters)|
|Additional Information:||Bibliography: leaves 110-119|
|Department(s):||Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Linguistics|
|Library of Congress Subject Heading:||Vetālapañcaviṅśati; Sanskrit language--Aspect; Sanskrit language--Tense|
Actions (login required)