Metamorphoses IV 683 use of subjunctive

Cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
Prīmō silet illa, nec audet
adpellāre virum virgō; manibusque modestōs
cēlāsset vultūs, sī nōn religāta fuisset:

She would have hidden her face if she had not been bound. celasset is clearly contrary to fact, but she was bound, so why the subjunctive with fuisset?
 

Etaoin Shrdlu

μεσσηγυδορποχέστης
I can't see your difficulty. As you say, she was bound, so positing a situation where she had not been bound is contrary to fact.
 

Cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
But she couldn't hide her face because she was bound, which is not contrary to fact.

I would have thought celasset vultus si potestas ei fuisset
or
celasset vultus si non religata erat
 

Cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
I see what you are saying now, the non is modifying religata not fuisset
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
As Etaoin said, the subject not being bound is past contrary-to-fact, for which you need the pluperfect subjunctive.
 

Cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
I was taking religata fuisset as the pluperfect of religo
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
It's true that religata fuisset can be an alternative pluperfect subjunctive for religata esset, in which case the clause would have meant "if she had not been bound" in the sense of "if someone had not bound her". In this context, though, I'd say religata works more as kind of an adjective and what we've got is "if she had not been bound" with "bound" describing her current state rather than an action. But, in either case, it would be a past contrary-to-fact anyway.
 
Last edited:
Top