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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.


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]


(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.
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)


A. ADJoptativo
B. Noptativo m


nOptativ m, → Wunschform f


1. adjottativo/a
2. nottativo
References in periodicals archive ?
The final optative, "Let poets give it voice / With human meanings," brings together the many elements of the image, here most literally where "it," signifying the "flower of spring" or its "vaunted alliance," is destined to be given "voice" by the "poets.
Their textbook is divided into thirty extensive and ambitious chapters which cover everything from the alphabet to the optative mood.
The full set of speaker-oriented modality consists of imperative, prohibitive, optative, hortative, admonitive, and permissive.
The sentence is technically a subjunctive conditional, with the additional complication that its main clause is either wishful or hortatory, bordering on what in some languages would be called the optative, yet also taking the form of what grammarians categorize as an imperative.
Moreover, as is characteristic of Emerson's texts in their most hopeful moments, he is only able to make the gesture in the optative mood--"I would write," as Stanley Cavell has stressed.
21) More specifically, they are suppletive in the third person plural of the medio-passive indicative perfect and pluperfect of verbs with consonant-final roots verbs, and the medio-passive subjunctive and optative perfect.
The verb form with the marker -k(o)/ -g(o) may have developed either from the imperative third person singular or from the earlier optative (cf.
But the discussion of optative sociology is barely two pages long, which means that nearly the entire book is a list of supposed mistakes.
Without that refusal, without the unceasing generation by the mind of 'counter-worlds'--a generation which cannot be divorced from the grammar of counter-factual and optative forms--we would turn forever on the treadmill of the present.
An optative of wish would make better sense here: presented with these two alternatives, "may we fare well.
masculine, NEG = negative, nom = nominal element of a nominal verb, OBL = oblique, OPT = optative, Part = particle, pi = plural, PPTC = perfect participle, PRS = present, PRT = preterite, Q = interrogative, sg = singular.
The best example of what lekton is, is offered by the optative sentences where the merely mental and into the future directed wish ('I wish to drink') constitutes the unavoidably incorporeal aspect of the expression.