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Mood, Aspect, Modality RevisitedNew Answers to Old Questions$
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Joanna Blaszczak, Anastasia Giannakidou, Dorota Klimek-Jankowska, and Krzysztof Migdalski

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780226363523

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226363660.001.0001

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Epistemic Future and Epistemic MUST: Nonveridicality, Evidence, and Partial Knowledge

Epistemic Future and Epistemic MUST: Nonveridicality, Evidence, and Partial Knowledge

(p.75) Chapter Three Epistemic Future and Epistemic MUST: Nonveridicality, Evidence, and Partial Knowledge
Mood, Aspect, Modality Revisited

Alda Giannakidou

University of Chicago Press

This chapter contributes new evidence from Greek and Italian showing that the future tense, despite its name, does not belong to the notional category of tense. They analyze Greek and Italian future morphemes as modal operators, with the force of necessity, and with the ability to associate with both metaphysical and epistemic modal bases, thus resulting in future and epistemic readings respectively. In Greek and in Italian, future morphemes can be used with purely epistemic readings. The authors define the category epistemic future. They then address the issue of weakness of future and must, and argue that there are two dimensions of weakness. The first has to do with nonveridicality. The so-called evidential component of must, therefore, is merely a reflex of the fact that it does not entail knowledge of p. At the same time, The authors argue that universal modals are biased. All modals that come with ordering sources are biased, therefore stronger than mere possibility modals. This analysis renders universal epistemic modals both strong (because they are biased) and weak (because they are nonveridical). Regarding the future, it becomes clear that the future as a notional category of tense is redundant.

Keywords:   Greek, Italian, future tense, epistemic future

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