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Sakharova N.S., Ivanova S.G., Dmitrieva E.V. SEMANTIC IMPLEMENTATION OF THE STRUCTURE “TO BE BOUT TO” IN THE ENGLISH FICTION (DIACHRONIC ASPECT)Semantic implementation of the combination “to be about to” is considered in the diachronic aspect for the period from the XVI to the XXcentury. The comparison of semantically similar structures “to be on the point (verge) of+ gerund”, “to be going+ infinitive” can be used to identify synonymity, stability and compatibility of these structures. Structure analysis was done on the basis of the original literary texts. The study showed that in the XVIcentury the structure “to be about+ infinitive” used in the subordinate clauses conveys the value of the nearest prospectivity. The structure frequency of “to be about+ infinitive” in the VIIIcentury slightly increased as compared to the XVIcentury. Structures “to be about+ infinitive” and “to be on the point of+ gerund” have the meaning of the nearest prospectivity with the modality of unfulfilled intentions. The list of verbs, the infinitive of which is used in the structure “to be going+ infinitive” (not only verbs denoting action, but also process, state and movement) expanded in the XXcentury in comparison with the VIIIcentury. The structure “to be going + infinitive” became more frequently used in the twentieth century as compared to the VIIIcentury. Significant changes took place in its semantics due to derestriction of structural and semantic limitations that existed in the VIIIcentury. The research revealed that the structures “to be about+ infinitive” and “to be on the point of+ gerund” possess a certain semantic stability. The structures “to be about + infinitive”, “to be on the point (verge) of+ gerund” convey the meaning of future actions, the implementation of which has already begun or is expected. The structure “to be going+ infinitive” expresses an intention of the future action implementation. The semantic and structural possibilities of grammatical structure “to be going+ infinitive” have been expanded.Key words: future action, diachronic study, prospectivity, grammar structure, modality, semantic features, frequency, infinitive, gerund.


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About this article

Authors: Saharova N.S., Ivanova S.G., Dmitrieva E.V.

Year: 2017

Sergey Aleksandrovich

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