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The absentive is a verbal aspect that expresses an ongoing activity of an agent who is currently absent while engaging in this activity.


Dutch We zijn lunchen 'We are off having lunch', Hungarian János levelet volt föladni [János letter.ACC was post.INF] 'János was off posting a letter' (de Groot 2000:695, 693)


  • de Groot, Casper. 2000. The absentive. In: Dahl, Östen (ed.) Tense and aspect in the languages of Europe. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. 641-667.
  • de Groot, Casper. 2007. The king is on huntunge: On the relation between progressive and absentive in Old and Early Modern English. In: Hannay, Mike & Steen, Gerard J. (eds.) 2007. Structural-functional studies in English grammar: In honour of Lachlan Mackenzie. Amsterdam: Benjamins. 175-190.

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