subjunctive(redirected from subjunctives)
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The subjunctive mood refers to verbs that are used to describe hypothetical or non-real actions, events, or situations. This is in comparison to the indicative mood, which is used to express factual, non-hypothetical information.
We most commonly use the subjunctive mood to express desires or wishes; to express commands, suggestions, requests, or statements of necessity; or to describe hypothetical outcomes that depend on certain conditions.
Of, relating to, or being a mood of a verb used in some languages for contingent or hypothetical action, action viewed subjectively, or grammatically subordinate statements.
1. The subjunctive mood.
2. A subjunctive construction. See Usage Note at if.
[Late Latin subiūnctīvus, from Latin subiūnctus, past participle of subiungere, to subjoin, subordinate (translation of Greek hupotaktikos, subordinate, subjunctive); see subjoin.]
(Grammar) grammar denoting a mood of verbs used when the content of the clause is being doubted, supposed, feared true, etc, rather than being asserted. The rules for its use and the range of meanings it may possess vary considerably from language to language. In the following sentence, were is in the subjunctive: I'd think very seriously about that if I were you. Compare indicative
a. the subjunctive mood
b. a verb in this mood
[C16: via Late Latin subjunctīvus, from Latin subjungere to subjoin]
1. of or designating a grammatical mood typically used for subjective, doubtful, hypothetical, or grammatically subordinate statements or questions, as the mood of be in if this be treason. Compare imperative (def. 3), indicative (def. 2).n.
2. the subjunctive mood.
3. a verb form in the subjunctive mood.
[1520–30; < Late Latin subjunctīvus= Latin subjunct(us), past participle of subjungere to harness, subjoin (sub- sub- + jungere to join) + -īvus -ive]
usage: The subjunctive mood has largely disappeared in English. It survives, though inconsistently, in sentences with conditional clauses contrary to fact and in subordinate clauses after verbs like wish: If the house were nearer to the road, we would hear more traffic noise. I wish I were in Florida. The subjunctive also occurs in subordinate that clauses after a main clause expressing recommendation, resolution, demand, etc.: We ask that each tenant take (not takes) responsibility for keeping the front door locked. It is important that only fresh spinach be (not is) used. The subjunctive occurs too in some established or idiomatic expressions: So be it. Heaven help us. God rest ye merry, gentlemen.
A form of a verb that expresses a doubt, condition, supposition, or contingency, for example, “were” in “If I were you I’d wait a while.”
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|Noun||1.||subjunctive - a mood that represents an act or state (not as a fact but) as contingent or possible|
|Adj.||1.||subjunctive - relating to a mood of verbs; "subjunctive verb endings"|
grammar - the branch of linguistics that deals with syntax and morphology (and sometimes also deals with semantics)