Venir de (+ infinitive): an immediate anteriority marker in French

Jacques Brès, Emmanuelle Labeau*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper deals with the grammaticalization of venir into aspectual auxiliary of immediate anteriority, against the traditional approach (Gougenheim 1929/1971) according to which venir de + inf., would express recent past and so would be a temporal auxiliary. On the basis of the (revised) Reichenbachian model, it shows that venir de + inf. bears upon the relationship between R and E (aspect) and not on the relationship between R and S (time). This analysis allows explain why venir, in this periphrasis, is defective (i.e. why venir cannot be conjugated in the passé simple or in any compound tense).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to) 530–570
Number of pages41
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2015

Bibliographical note

Labeau, E., & Bres, J. (2015). Venir de (+ infinitive): An immediate anteriority marker in French. Diachronica. Vol. 32, no.4, p530-570.
© the publisher should be contacted for permission to re-use or reprint the material in any form.


  • venir de + inf
  • aspectual auxiliary of anteriority
  • defective conjugation
  • grammaticalisation of movement verbs
  • recent past
  • immediate anteriority


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