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  • Grammatical tense is how languages talk about time

    語言文法中的「時態」是用來表示時間的方法

  • without explicitly naming time periods.

    它不直接地說出動作發生的時間

  • By instead, modifying verbs to specify when action occurs.

    反而,藉由改變動詞形式,詳明何時發生

  • So how many different tenses are there in a language like English?

    像英文這樣的語言中,有幾種時態呢?

  • At first, the answer seems obvious:

    似乎無須多想

  • there's past,

    那就是,過去式、

  • present,

    現在式、

  • and future.

    和未來式

  • But thanks to something called grammatical aspect,

    不過,文法中所謂的「時狀」

  • each of those time periods actually divides further.

    可將這三種時態細分為更多種

  • There are four kinds of aspect.

    「時狀」有四種

  • In the continuous or progressive aspect,

    「進行式」

  • the actions are still happening at the time of reference.

    表示動作正在發生

  • The perfect aspect describes actions that are finished.

    「完成式」表示動作已經完成

  • The perfect progressive aspect is a combination,

    「完成進行式」

  • describing a completed part of a continuous action.

    表示動作進行之中,已完成的部分

  • And finally, there's the simple aspect,

    最後,是「簡單式」

  • the basic form of the past, present, and future tense

    它是過去、現在、未來式的基本型

  • where an action is not specified as continuous or discreet.

    使用於動作不在進行中,或沒有詳細說明

  • That's all a little hard to follow, so let's see how it works in action.

    這樣講有點難理解,所以我們就舉個例子來說明

  • Let's say your friends tell you they went on a secret naval mission

    假設你的朋友告訴你,他們秘密執行了一個海洋任務

  • to collect evidence of a mysterious sea creature.

    為了要蒐集神秘海生物的蹤跡

  • The tense sets the overall frame of reference in the past,

    顯示整體的時間設在過去

  • but within that, there are many options.

    但在事件中,發生了很多不同事

  • Your friends might say a creature attacked their boat,

    你的朋友可能會說,有生物攻擊了他們的船

  • that's the past simple, the most general aspect,

    這是「過去簡單式」,最粗略地表達大概的時間位置

  • which gives no further clarification.

    沒有說明更詳細的時間點

  • They were sleeping when it happened,

    如果說,是當他們睡覺時,攻擊的

  • a continuous process underway at that point.

    用進行式,表達某事持續發生時,另一件事情發生了

  • They might also tell you they had departed from Nantucket

    他們也可能告訴你,他們已經從南塔克特島出發了

  • to describe an action completed even earlier.

    描述更早之前發生的事情

  • That's an example of the past perfect.

    這是個「過去完成式」的例子

  • Or that they had been sailing for three weeks,

    或者,他們已經航行三周了

  • something that was ongoing up until that point.

    描述到過去某時間點為止,持續進行的事情

  • In the present, they tell you that they still search for the creature today,

    他們告訴你,當今他仍在搜尋

  • their present simple activity.

    用「現在簡單式」

  • Perhaps they are preparing for their next mission continuously as they speak.

    他們這麼說時,也許他們同時也正在準備下次的任務

  • And they have built a special submarine for it, a completed achievement.

    而且,他們已經建造了一艘特製的潛水艇

  • Plus, if they have been researching possible sightings of the creature,

    如果說,他們已正在研究潛在的目標生物

  • it's something they've been doing for a while and are still doing now

    說明這是已經開始,並仍在進行的事情

  • making it present perfect progressive.

    所以要用「現在完成進行式」

  • So what does this next mission hold?

    那下次要進行甚麼任務呢?

  • You know it still hasn't happened because they will depart next week,

    他們下周才要出發,所以還沒開始進行

  • the future simple.

    這是未來簡單式

  • Your friends will be searching for the elusive creature,

    你朋友將搜尋著罕見的生物

  • an extended continuous undertaking.

    一個持續進行的任務

  • They tell you the submarine will have reached uncharted depths a month from now.

    他們告訴你,一個月後潛水艇將會下探至,無人未及的海深

  • That's a confident prediction

    說話者很有信心地預測

  • about what will be achieved by a specific point in the future,

    在未來某個時間點,他們經航行三周後

  • a point at which they will have been voyaging for three weeks

    將會達成的事情

  • in the future perfect progressive.

    用「未來完成進行式」

  • The key insight to all these different tenses

    要了解這不同「時態」的關鍵是

  • is that each sentence takes place in a specific moment,

    清楚每個描述的事件,發生在哪個時域

  • whether it's past, present, or future.

    是過去、現在,還是未來?

  • The point of aspects is that they tell you as of that moment

    要知道「時狀」,就要清楚動作

  • the status of the action.

    發生時的狀態

  • In total, they give us twelve possibilities in English.

    英文總共有 12 種表示時間的方法

  • What about other languages?

    那其他語言呢?

  • Some, like French,

    法文、

  • Swahili

    斯瓦希里语、

  • and Russian take a similar approach to English.

    和俄文,採用類似英文的方法

  • Others describe and divide time differently.

    其他語言則用不同的方法,來表達和切割時間點

  • Some have fewer grammatical tenses, like Japanese,

    有些的文法時態比較少,像是日語

  • which only distinguishes past from non-past,

    它只有過去式和非過去式

  • Buli and Tukang Besi,

    布里語和圖康伯西語

  • which only distinguish future from non-future,

    只有未來式和非未來式

  • and Mandarin Chinese with no verb tenses at all, only aspect.

    而中文完全沒有動詞時態,只有時狀

  • On the other hand, languages like Yagwa split past tense into multiple degrees,

    另一方面,雅瓜語得過去式分別有多種時段

  • like whether something happened hours, weeks, or years ago.

    像是發生在幾小時前、幾周前、或幾年前

  • In others, tenses are intertwined with moods that can convey urgency,

    還有其他語言的時態和語氣息息相關,可傳達事件的緊急性

  • necessity,

    必要性

  • or probability of events.

    或可能性

  • This makes translation difficult but not impossible.

    這不易於翻譯,但並非不可翻

  • Speakers of most languages without certain tenses can express the same ideas

    即便使用多數不具特定時態的語言,還是可以藉由

  • with auxiliary words, like would or did,

    助動詞,像是 would 或 did

  • or by specifying the time they mean.

    或是詳述時間點,來表達事件發生的時間

  • Are the variations from language to language

    這些語言之間的差異

  • just different ways of describing the same fundamental reality?

    只是表達同一基本事實的不同方法嗎?

  • Or do their diverse structures reflect different ways of thinking about the world

    還是,他們多樣的文法結構反映著,對世界、乃至對時間

  • and even time itself?

    不同的思維模式呢?

  • And if so, what other ways of conceiving time may be out there?

    如果是這樣,還可以用甚麼方式,來表達時間呢?

Grammatical tense is how languages talk about time

語言文法中的「時態」是用來表示時間的方法

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B1 中級 中文 美國腔 TED-Ed 時態 進行式 簡單式 未來式 語言

【TED-Ed】英文時態知多少?(How many verb tenses are there in English? - Anna Ananichuk)

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    Chen-an Hsiao 發佈於 2017 年 12 月 28 日
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