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441. The Optative Subjunctive is used to express a Wish. The present tense denotes the wish as possible, the imperfect as unaccomplished in present time, the pluperfect as unaccomplished in past time. The negative is :—
  1. ita vīvam (Att. 5.15) , as true as I live, so may I live.
  2. ne vīvam sciō; (id. 4.16.8), I wish I may not live if I know.
  3. perduint (Deiot. 21) , the gods confound thee!
  4. valeant, valeant cīvēs meī; sint incolumēs (Mil. 93) , farewell, farewell to my fellow-citizens; may they be secure from harm.
  5. facerent sine patre forem (Ov. M. 8.72) , would that the gods allowed me to be without a father (but they do not)!

a. The perfect subjunctive in a wish is archaic:—

  1. faxint (Fam. 14.3.3) , may the gods grant.
  2. quod ōmen āverterint (Phil. 12.14, in a religious formula), and may the gods avert this omen.

hide References (2 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • J. B. Greenough, G. L. Kittredge, Select Orations of Cicero, Allen and Greenough's Edition., AG Cic. 27
  • Cross-references to this page (1):
    • Anne Mahoney, Overview of Latin Syntax, Verbs
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