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CONJUNCTIONS. And if used for "even if" and "if indeed"

And if represents both "even if" and "if indeed" (i.e. both καὶ εἰ and εἰ καί).

And if is used emphatically for "even if" in

“It dies and1 if it had a thousand lives.

So 1 Hen. IV. i. 3. 125.

“What and2 if
His sorrows have so overwhelm'd his wits.

“He seems to be of great authority, give him gold. And though
authority be a stubborn bear, yet he is oft led by the nose with

On the other hand, and if seems to mean "if indeed" in the following passages:--

Percy. Seize it if thou darest.
Aum. And3 if I do not, may my hands rot off!

“Oh father!
And if you be my father, think upon
Don John my husband.” MIDDLETON and ROWLEY (Walker).

Prince. I fear no uncles dead (419).
Glou. Nor none that live, I hope.
Prince. And4 if they live, I hope I need not fear,

where the Prince is referring to his maternal uncles who have been imprisoned by Richard, and he says, "if indeed they live I need not fear."

Thus probably we must explain:

“O full of danger is the duke of Gloucester!
And the queen's sons and brothers haught and proud;
And were they to be ruled, and not to rule,
This sickly land might solace as before.

Here, at first sight, "but" seems required instead of "and." But "and were they" means "if indeed they were."

It is not easy to determine whether and though is used for "even though" or for "though indeed" in the following-- “I have now
(And though perhaps it may appear a trifle)
Serious employment for thee.” MASSINGER (Walker).

In all these passages an or and may be resolved into its proper meaning by supplying an ellipsis. Thus in the passage from Rich. II. iv. 1. 49, "And if I do not," &c. means, "I will seize it, and, if I do not seize it, may my hands rot off."

1 So Folio.

2 So Folio.

3 So Folio.

4 So Folio.

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