Ζευς δε φοβηθεις μη μανθανωσιν οἱ άνθρωποι την ἱατρικην, έκεραυνωσεν αύτον.

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
In my course there is this sentence:

Ζευς δε φοβηθεις μη μανθανωσιν οἱ άνθρωποι την ἱατρικην, έκεραυνωσεν αύτον.

They say that the verb of a clause of fearing is in subjunctive if the verb of the main clause is in a primary tense (so present, perfect or future), and in the optative if the verb of the main clause is in a secondary tense (so imperfect, aorist or pluperfect). Yet in this sentence the verb έκεραυνωσεν is aorist, the participle on which the clause of fearing depends, φοβηθεις, is aorist too, but μανθανωσιν is subjunctive. So what's going on? Mistake, or is there an explanation?
 

Matthaeus

Vemortuicida strenuus
Hey Puella I am really curious of your pronunciation of these Greek exercises. Couldst thou post a recording, prithee?
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Hey Puella I am really curious of your pronunciation of these Greek exercises. Couldst thou post a recording, prithee?
I don't normally pronounce them.
The subjunctive is sometimes retained in fearing clauses after a verb in historic sequence.
Have a look at this example from Xenophon:
ὥστε οἱ μὲν θεώμενοι ἐφοβοῦντο μή τι πάθῃ -"so that the people watching were afraid she might have an accident." Symposium, 2, 11.
I see, thank you.
 

Matthaeus

Vemortuicida strenuus
You mean you don't even read aloud just recognise the letters silently???
sorta like looking at pictures?
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Indeed I don't read out loud.
 

UnusZnex

Member
The optative is usually put in place of the subjunctive, but not always; it's sort of more depending on the discretion of the writer.

The subjunctive if I recall correctly was considered more vivid, and so it would be used more in these sorts of contexts (which likely later on was a factor leading to Koine Greek's complete ousting of the optative in favour of the subjunctive).
 
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