Aspect in the English language: a comparative analysis of form and meaning in traditional descriptive grammars



aspect, English grammar, classification, comparative analysis


Aspect in the English language has been described through different categories and terminologies, which might lead teachers and students into some misunderstandings. Considering the importance of understanding the systematic representation of this concept in learning a foreign language, we review and compare the various ways aspect is presented in five of the most traditional descriptive English grammar books. We examined whether aspect is explicitly approached; how it is defined; categorized and whether the types of aspect are clearly explained in terms of meaning. Based on that, we contrasted their classification and terminology with an alternative approach, highlighting ambiguities and common grounds.