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1. Expressing a wish or choice.
2. Grammar
a. Of, relating to, or being a mood of verbs in some languages, such as Greek, used to express a wish.
b. Designating a statement using a verb in the subjunctive mood to indicate a wish or desire, as in Had I the means, I would do it.
n. Grammar
1. The optative mood.
2. A verb or an expression in the optative mood.

[Middle English optatif, from Old French, from Late Latin optātīvus, from Latin optātus, past participle of optāre, to wish.]

op′ta·tive·ly adv.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. indicating or expressing choice, preference, or wish
2. (Grammar) grammar denoting a mood of verbs in Greek, Sanskrit, etc, expressing a wish
(Grammar) grammar
a. the optative mood
b. a verb in this mood
[C16: via French optatif, from Late Latin optātīvus, from Latin optāre to desire]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈɒp tə tɪv)

1. of or pertaining to a verb mood, as in Greek, used to express a wish or desire.
2. the optative mood.
3. a verb in the optative mood.
[1520–30; < Late Latin optātīvus= Latin optāt(us) (past participle of optāre; see opt, -ate1) + -īvus -ive]
op′ta•tive•ly, adv.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.optative - a mood (as in Greek or Sanskrit) that expresses a wish or hope; expressed in English by modal verbs
Sanskrit, Sanskritic language - (Hinduism) an ancient language of India (the language of the Vedas and of Hinduism); an official language of India although it is now used only for religious purposes
Ellas, Greece, Hellenic Republic - a republic in southeastern Europe on the southern part of the Balkan peninsula; known for grapes and olives and olive oil
modality, mood, mode - verb inflections that express how the action or state is conceived by the speaker
Adj.1.optative - indicating an option or wish
2.optative - relating to a mood of verbs in some languages; "optative verb endings"
grammar - the branch of linguistics that deals with syntax and morphology (and sometimes also deals with semantics)
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


A. ADJoptativo
B. Noptativo m
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005


nOptativ m, → Wunschform f
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007


1. adjottativo/a
2. nottativo
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995
References in periodicals archive ?
In 2017, chemical product price started to improve, which have a optative impact on third-party chemical distribution market.
The poetics of susceptibility unfold in the optative mode--not in the expectation that a wish shall be granted, but in a spirit of awareness that there is more to be heard than has been, or perhaps can be, understood.
For Eng, "Suspended between departure and arrival, Asian Americans remain permanently disenfranchised from home, relegated to a nostalgic sense of its loss or to an optative sense of its unattainability" (Eng, "Out Here" 31).
Even in this optative mode, Plat's analogy operates according to the dynamics of practical address.
Verbs are divided into transitive and intransitive, they inflect for tense (Present, Past, analytical Future), mood (Indicative and Oblique--Imperative, Evidential, Adhortative, Optative, Conjunctive, Conditional), voice (Active with two conjugations: subjective and objective, and Passive), aspect (General and Stative), they have three numbers as well as subject agreement and object agreement.
sway between assertive, hypothetical, and optative stances, finally
Among the topics are Gothic evidence for Greek historical phonology, on the oblique optative in Herodotus' completive sentences: an evidentiality mark in Ancient Greek, focus on performance: some focusing expressions in anagnorisis scenes from Attic tragedy, verbal alternations in Ancient Greek as an interface between lexicon and syntax, and Homeric and Hittite phraseology compared: introducing the soliloquy in the Homeric and Near Eastern epic.
In a space of optative desire, that is, we see the origin and meaning of events contested and reframed, their relation to external and internal compulsion re-construed.
Most notably, concerning the notion of walking on a "razor's edge"; Milton's "flexibly complex" re-inscription of the choice of Achilles; his appropriation of Homeric theodicy; and his acute awareness of the "theological significance of the temporal distinctions made possible by Homeric Greek, particularly those tenses and modes (including the imperfect, aorist, optative, future less vivid, and middle passive voice) that denote present or past conditionality--what may happen or what might have happened rather than what will happen or what has happened" (357-8).
His language and life-mood are indicative and imperative, not subjunctive or optative; (28) his real and definite existence is a powerful retort to A's vaporous and hypothetical one.