abstract verb

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A verb of motion whose motion is multidirectional (as opposed to unidirectional) or indirect, or whose action is repeated or in a series (iterative), instead of being a single, completed action. Abstract verbs are always imperfective in aspect, even with prefixes that are normally associated with the perfective aspect.

(abstract) I went to the post office. (there and back, multidirectional)
(concrete) I went to the post office. (and am there now, unidirectional)

(abstract) I went to the theater and had an accident. (the event occurred during the trip there and back)
(concrete) I went to the theater and had an accident. (the event occurred at the theater)

(abstract) I like to fly. (repeated action) Polish example: Lubię latać. (infinitive: latać)
(concrete) I flew to Frankfurt. (a single, completed action) Polish example: Poleciałem do Frankfurtu. (infinitive: (po)lecieć)

Submitted on July 07, 2010

Additional definitions for 'abstract verb':

abstract verbUsed other than as an idiom: see abstract, verb.
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"abstract verb." Phrases.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 25 May 2020. <https://www.phrases.com/phrase/abstract-verb_10828>.

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