OGLĄDAŁEM TELEWIZJĘ, KIEDY ZADZWONIŁ TELEFON – verb aspect in Polish

Posted on Posted in Advanced, Intermediate

Aspect as a grammar category shows how actions are extended in time and whether they were completed or not. Ways the aspect can be expressed in languages are various. English for example uses complex tense system. In Polish aspect is expressed by different form of the same verb.

Let’s have a look at the examples:
Wczoraj gotowałem obiad. – Yesterday I was cooking a dinner.
Wczoraj ugotowałem obiad.  – Yesterday I cooked a dinner.
Oglądałam telewizję, kiedy zadzwonił telefon. – I was watching TV, when the phone rang.

 

USAGE OF VERB ASPECT

 

As you may see in the exemples Polish imperfective verbs (gotować, oglądać) corespond with English Past Continuous tense. In most cases that rule works but there are some exeptions. The picture below showes the usage of the aspect in Polish.

 

 

FORMATION OF ASPECTUAL PAIRS

There are few ways of creating aspectual pairs but predicting which one should be used with which verbs is almost imposible. Thus the best options is to learn aspectual pairs by heart. Here you can download a list of most commonly used verbs.

 

LET’S PRACTISE

Play ‘Who wants to be a millionaire’ to practice aspectual pairs.

 

 

If the game doesn’t work, you may find it here

 
Check if you understand when perfective and imperfective forms should be used.

 

If the exercise doesn’t work, you may find it here

 

 

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