Implications and typological solutions
The main topics pursued in this volume are based on empirical insights derived from Germanic: logical and typological dispositions about aspect-modality links. These are probed in a variety of non-related languages. The logically establishable links are the following: Modal verbs are aspect sensitive in the selection of their infinitival complements – embedded infinitival perfectivity implies root modal reading, whereas embedded infinitival imperfectivity triggers epistemic readings. However, in marked contexts such as negated ones, the aspectual affinities of modal verbs are neutralized or even subject to markedness inversion. All of this suggests that languages that do not, or only partially, bestow upon full modal verb paradigms seek to express modal variations in terms of their aspect oppositions. This typological tenet is investigated in a variety of languages from Indo-European (German, Slavic, Armenian), African, Asian, Amerindian, and Creoles. Seeming deviations and idiosyncrasies in the interaction between aspect and modality turn out to be highly rule-based.