Volume 3, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2772-3720
  • E-ISSN: 2772-3739
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In this paper it is argued that the Hungarian future auxiliary is a modal rather than a temporal operator. As opposed to previous findings in the literature, the paper claims that it can be used when the proposition is inferred, therefore it can have an epistemic modal base. The results of a questionnaire study and introspective data are presented to support this claim. Based on these data, it is argued that the distributional difference between and the non-past cannot be explained by the presence or absence of temporal ambiguity only, the choice also depends on the context. Namely, the use of the non-past is marginal if the speaker infers the truth of the proposition from contextually known facts, while is natural and acceptable in such cases. The Hungarian data presented further strengthen the hypothesis that there is a strong connection between future-referring morphemes and epistemic modality.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): epistemic modality; future auxiliaries; future time reference; Hungarian
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