I was understanding the concept of vている and its implications on the intransitive verb. I have seen that, vている when used with punctual transitive verb, are used to focus on the present state (somewhat), e.g. 着ている (I wear ___), 知っている(I know ___). Whereas, the Vnp form of these Punctual Transitive Verbs, i.e. indicate their future aspect, e.g. 着ます/着る indicates I will wear, 知ります/知る indicates I will know.

Further, I came to know that, Durative Transitive Verbs which showcase, continuous form with vている e.g. ドアを閉めている (I am closing the door), becomes sort of Stative/Punctual with intransitive counterpart i.e. ドアが閉まっている (The door is closed).

So, my question is, does the vている form of the above said verbs/or the intransitive verbs whose counterpart is transitive verb (Usually the counterpart are continuous verbs), focus on the present state of the object, like the Punctual Transitive Verbs mentioned above, and their Vnp form indicate future aspect?

E.g. Will ドアが閉まっている focus upon the present state of the object, i.e. the door is closed. Whereas, ドアが閉まります/閉まる indicate, the door will close? like the Punctual Transitive Verb.


1 Answer 1


Verbs like 分かる and 結婚する are 100% punctual, but many verbs, including 閉まる, 閉める, 着る, 寝る and so on, are sometimes punctual and sometimes durative, depending on the context. When there is a transitive/intransitive verb pair (e.g. 落とす/落ちる, 始める/始まる, 割る/割れる), the transitive version tends to have a durative meaning (because the subject is usually a person) whereas the intransitive version tends to be a punctual verb (because the subject is usually an inanimate object).

  • ドアを閉めている: usually "[I] am closing the door (now)", but sometimes "[I] have closed the door".
  • ドアが閉まっている: usually "The door is closed", but sometimes "The door is being shut (now)"
  • 花瓶を割っている: usually "[I] am breaking a vase", but sometimes "[I] have broken the vase".
  • 花瓶が割れている: usually "The vase is broken", but occasionally "The vase is (in the process of) being broken".
  • ポールを立てている: "[I] am putting up a pole" or "[I] have put up the pole".
  • ポールが立っている: "A pole is standing".
  • ドアを閉めます: "[I] will close the door".
  • ドアが閉まります: "The door will close".
  • シャツを着ています: "[I] am (in the process of) wearing a shirt" or "[I] wear a shirt".
  • よく寝ています: "[He] is sleeping well" or "[He] has slept well".

You can often use ~ところ or ~てある to disambiguate (see this answer).

Either way, the focus is on the subject of the sentence usually marked with が or は. ドアを閉めている is about someone's action, whereas ドアは閉まっている is about the door itself.

  • ありがとうナルとさん, i got most of it, I just have a doubt. Like in your example sentences, will the Vnp form of these Punctual Intransitive Verbs whose pair is the Durative Transitive Verb will always be future form. E.g. ドア閉まります, will this always mean The door will close. Whereas, we will use the ている form i.e. ドアを閉まっている to indicate the present aspect I.e. the door is closed.
    – APK
    Jun 24, 2020 at 4:19
  • When I say 閉まります I include its informal form 閉まる as well.
    – APK
    Jun 24, 2020 at 4:25
  • @APK Sorry, I haven't heard of "Vnp form" (it has not been used on this site, either). Is it the same as the dictionary form? ドアを閉まっている is ungrammatical (閉まる is intransitive).
    – naruto
    Jun 24, 2020 at 4:33
  • Sorry to bother you but, I mean Verb Non Past Form, I for both the Non Past Form, 閉まる(informal) and 閉まります (polite). So in this case, will both ドアが閉まる and ドアが閉まります always indicate the future aspect (I.e. door will close). Whereas, ドアが閉まっている indicate the present aspect (I.e. door is closed)
    – APK
    Jun 24, 2020 at 4:52
  • @APK Hmm, didn't I explain the two possible meanings of ドアが閉まっている?
    – naruto
    Jun 24, 2020 at 6:23

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