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Can completive and durative adverbials function as tests for telicity?: Evidence from English and Chinese

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>2006
<mark>Journal</mark>Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory
Issue number1
Volume2
Number of pages21
Pages (from-to)1-21
<mark>State</mark>Published
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

Telicity is an important concept in the study of aspect. While the compatibility tests with completive and durative adverbials have long been in operation as a diagnostic for telicity, their validity and reliability have rarely been questioned. This article critically explores the validity and reliability of such tests and discusses such temporal expressions in English and Chinese on the basis of written and spoken corpora of the two languages and proposes a scheme of usage categories of completive and durative adverbials with their respective proportions, which is adequately explanatory of the phenomena observed in attested language use and enables compatibility tests with completive and durative adverbials to achieve improved accuracy and reliability.