Talk:be after

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be after

In the absence of any specific criteria for determining when verb + prep/adv/particle is a phrasal verb - and when it is not - this seems readily decomposable to be + after#Preposition, with after always heading a prepositional phrase. after has a function of indicating the goal of an action. It has this meaning with a large number of verbs and usually does not transform the semantics of the verb itself.

The usage note claims "after" is "inseparable". By what ordinary sense of "inseparable"? Consider "I am here after the book I lent you." and "I am after the book I lent you.". Is the second case an instance of a phrasal verb, but not the first? DCDuring TALK 14:28, 4 August 2011 (UTC)

Delete in this meaning, but there is a Hiberno-English meaning, not yet recorded in our definition, that may be worth adding (and keeping), namely "I'm after washing the dishes" = "I have just washed the dishes". —Angr 14:37, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
Yes. I thought I'd heard something like that and just confirmed it with a friend. DCDuring TALK 17:16, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
w:Grammatical aspect includes "recent past aspect", giving "after aspect" as a synonym, and illustrating it with this expression from Hiberno-English. DCDuring TALK 11:48, 9 August 2011 (UTC)
Can't you also say "I've come after my book" where the verb is not be? --Mglovesfun (talk) 09:37, 9 August 2011 (UTC)
If you've got the phrasal PoV, the existence of [[come after]] addresses that objection. DCDuring TALK 11:48, 9 August 2011 (UTC)
Delete per nom, or redirect to [[after]]. This use of after clearly does not depend on an overt be; google books:"man after her own heart" alone gets hundreds of this! I can't really comment on the Hiberno-English sense, but it would not surprise me if this use also didn't depend on an overt be. Speakers who have this construction, please tell me: if something like "even though he wasn't after drinking, he didn't want to drive" is O.K., how about just "even though not after drinking, he didn't want to drive"? (I'm modeling that on "even though he wasn't about to drive, he didn't want to drink" and "even though not about to drive, he didn't want to drink". We don't have an entry for be about (full infinitive) or be about to (bare infinitive), and I'm assuming that be after (gerund-participle) is analogous.) —RuakhTALK 17:09, 9 August 2011 (UTC)
Please see this from MWDEU about the Irish English. I wonder if "after" can be used with all forms of be in this sense or, rather, aspect, or only with a past tense form (also not a progressive). DCDuring TALK 18:08, 9 August 2011 (UTC)
Comrie's book on Aspect has something suggesting that "be after" is a calque from Celtic languages. DCDuring TALK 19:36, 9 August 2011 (UTC)
Yes; Irish, Scottish Gaelic, Manx and Welsh all have the construction (maybe Cornish and Breton do too, I don't know), and the Hiberno-English construction is certainly calqued from Irish. I don't have this construction natively myself, but I think it's most common with a present tense form of "to be": I am after doing the dishes = "I have just done the dishes". I can easily imagine it being used with a past tense form to make an effective pluperfect (certainly the parallel construction in Irish and Welsh can be used that way), e.g. I was after doing the dishes = "I had just done the dishes". Another common Hiberno-English construction that's calqued from Irish is the use of a small clause after and to mean something along the lines of "even though", e.g. "He was telling me how much he dislikes his sister, and her sitting there the whole time!" = "...even though she was sitting there the whole time". The "proximate perfect" construction with after can also be found here, in which case the be form is omitted, e.g. "and me after telling ye how much depended on your being good". So the answer to Ruakh's question is yes, it doesn't depend on an overt be. So this proximate perfect construction (a term I just made up I'm after making up, I have no idea if it's the real technical term) can be discussed at [[after]], and [[be after]] can be deleted. —Angr 20:50, 9 August 2011 (UTC)
Please take a look at the (Irish English) sense I added at [[after#Preposition]]. It could probably use more usage examples. There are already citations at Citations:be after which I will move. DCDuring TALK 21:03, 14 August 2011 (UTC)

redirected -- Liliana 07:44, 20 October 2011 (UTC)