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On 20 Sep 2004 Roger Mills <rfmilly@MSN...> wrote:

> "Don't _get/become_ sick" i.e. stay healthy, is OK.

  You are right here -- and I was aware of it since Hungarian verb
for 'to be' works this way -- but in this case, quality verbs have
no future either. A verb "be-sick" describes a particular status,
therefore, it cannot describe a future change in status.

  In this case, every quality verb should have a shadow form for
describing changing of that quality, let's call them "mutation
verb" here. Mutation verbs lack presence, though, since utterances
like "I become sick" refer to the future.

  Thus we have two defective paradigms which complements each
other. In this case why we should not state that verb "be-sick" has
a suppletive imperative like "become be-sick". Moreover, in
contrast to English, the copulative verb is not exchanged to
another (be > get/become), the original qualitaty verb "be-sick" is
retained (since there is no other way to express of "being-sick").
Therefore any additive elements like "get/become" can be treated as
an auxiliary. In this sence there is a true imperative for quality
verbs but they are formed differently as non-quality ones. (In
fact, according to my source, quality verbs have a different
paradigm in Guarani). If constructions like "become be-sick" cannot
be considered as imperative of "be-sick", then English "will be
sick" cannot be future either.

  Similar phenomena can be observed in Slavic languages in case of
perfect ~ imperfect verb pairs (i.e. in concept of "vid" in Slavic
terms). Thus I think this issue could be rather a form of "vid"
than a special feature of quality verbs. (Quality verbs always
belong to imperfect "vid", "mutation" verbs to perfect "vid".)

  In languages not implementing the concept of "vid", quality verbs
may have imperative. E.g. in Hungarian there are a number of
quality verbs like: |örül| 'be glad/happy', |sárgáll(ik)| 'be
yellow (e.g. a cornfield)', |lángol| 'be in flames' etc. There is
no problem to form their imperative, e.g. when I wait in a crossing
for the green light, I can "hurry" the traffic lamp saying
|Zöldellj már!| 'Come on, be (=become) green!' < |zöldell(ik)| 'be
green'.

  I am really eager to know how to say "be X!" or even "get/become
X!" in actual languages using quality verbs "be-X". Unfortunately,
my source on
Guarani lacks these forms, but I would be statisfied even with Old
Albic :)