previous next

17. The only remaining form of dependent optative is that found in past general suppositions, as εἴ τις κλέψειεν (or ὃς κλέψειεν), ἐκολάζετο, if ever any one stole (or whoever stole), he was (always) punished (462; 531).

Here the optative after a past tense represents an original subjunctive after a present tense (11), differing in this from the optative in future conditions (16), which is in an original construction. The late development of this optative appears from its almost total absence in protasis with εἰ in Homer (468), where the corresponding subjunctive in protasis is also infrequent. It may therefore be disregarded in considering the primitive uses of the optative. (See 11 b.

For a more full discussion of the relations of the optative to the other moods, see Appendix I.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: