Perfective modals with a meaning of ability: smoch and sumet’

2011. № 1 (21), 77-109


The article deals with perfective forms of the Russian modal verbs expressing possibility – smoch’/sumet’ — and their morphological correlates in other Slavic languages. We analyze some semantic differences between moch’/smoch’ and umet’/sumet’, their component structure and historical development, as these perfectives appeared much later than their imperfective correlates. Different cases of infinitive ellipsis which some of such perfectives allow are also studied. Special attention is paid to the description of the logical characteristics thatmoch’/smoch’ and umet’/sumet’ possess as well as to their implicative types.