VERBS, MOODS OF:-- Conditional sentences, irregularitiesConditional sentences. The consequent does not always answer to the antecedent in mood or tense. Frequently the irregularity can be readily explained by a change of thought.
So 3 Hen. VI. v. 7. 21.
“And that I'll prove on better men than Somerset,
(Or rather, I would) Were growing time once ripen'd to
“If we shall stand still
(Or rather, if we should, for we shall not) We should take root.
Compare Ezek. xiv. 14, A. V.:
“I will find
Where truth is hid, (and I would find it) though it were hid
Within the centre.
Though these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, they should deliver but their own souls.with ib. 20, "they shall deliver."
“Till I know 'tis done,
“But if the gods themselves did see her then
* * * * * * *
(If they had seen her) The instant burst of clamour that she
Would have made milch the burning eyes of heaven.
Howe'er my hopes (might be), my joys were ne'er begun.” Ib. iv. 3. 70. Sometimes the consequent is put graphically in the present merely for vividness:
Or else the speaker rises in the tone of confidence: “I am assured, if I be measured rightly,
“If he should do so,
He leaves his back unarm'd; . . . never fear that.
Your majesty hath no just cause to hate me.” Ib. v. 2. 66.