Verb aspect expresses how an action extends over time. English has four verb aspects: simple, progressive, perfect and perfect progressive, but Ukrainian doesn’t have these. We have two other aspects: imperfective and perfective. The imperfective describes the process (an uncompleted action) focusing on action, while the perfective shows the result of an action (a completed action).
I was writing.
I am writing. / I write.
|Я бу́ду писа́ти|
/ Я писа́тиму.**
I will be writing.
I will write.
** both forms are interchangeable
|I was reading a book yesterday.||I read (finished reading) the book yesterday.|
|Every morning I was drinking coffee.||I drank coffee today.|
(Sequence of actions)
|We talked, sang and danced.||We talked, (then) sang and then danced.|
Most Ukrainian verbs come in imperfective and perfective pairs, but not all. The perfective form of the verb can be formed with the help of:
- prefixes: “з-, с-, зі-, в-, за-, на-, по-, про-, при-, ви-“:
йти - прийти́(to come),
писа́ти - написа́ти(to write),
чита́ти - прочита́ти(to read);
- suffixes: “–а-, -ува-, -ва-“:
допомага́ти - допомогти́(to help),
зігріва́ти – зігрі́ти(to warm);
- sounds alternation in the stem:
сиді́ти- сі́сти(to seat),
збира́ти - зібра́ти(to gather);
- stress change:
розріза́ти - розрі́зати(to cut),
склика́ти - скли́кати(to convene);
- different words:
лови́ти - пійма́ти(to catch),
бра́ти - взя́ти(to take))
Unfortunately there are no way of knowing when to use any of the methods listed above.
|to go (by a vehicle)|
|to wake up|
|to take (to receive)|
|to have lunch|
|to have dinner/supper|
|to get up|
Some verbs have only imperfective or perfective form.
|imperfective only verbs||perfective only verbs|