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Take this quote from Hillary Clinton: "I think there should be a much broader agenda and I know it`s difficult to imagine having the Congress work on so many issues at the same time. Because it does require a level of organization and follow-through that is hard and I know that having been there." (emphasis added)

In this case, readers can clearly see the perfect aspect being used in the participial phrase "having been there". My question is simply how to describe the aspect in a participial phrase that lacks such clear marking. For instance, in "I saw the car pulling out", does "pulling out" have its own continuous aspect or does it simply borrow the aspect of the verb in the clause it belongs in?

If so, would it be correct to describe "I am sitting" as having continuous aspect, but "I am, sitting" as not?

  • A technical question Does your "perfect aspect" mean what English grammarians tend to call perfective (grammatical/viewpoint) aspect, contrasted with imperfective (grammatical/viewpoint) aspect, or does it refer to the English perfect construction (which is something quite different)? – StoneyB on hiatus Sep 22 '18 at 20:48
  • Perfective, not perfect construction. – Mark Sep 25 '18 at 5:57

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