Greenwood professor of hellenistic greek and indo-european philology in the victoria university of manchester tutor in new testament language and literature

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And whatever the distinction may be, we must apply the

same essential principles to commands and prohibitions,

which were felt by the Greeks to be logically identical

categories: see Miller op. cit. 416. The only difference

will be that the meaning of mh> poih

comes from the future sense inherent in the subjunctive,

while in estimating the force of poi

but the aorist idea to consider. This, as we have often

repeated, lies in the "point action" involved. In the

imperative therefore the conciseness of the aorist makes it a

decidedly more sharp and urgent form than the present. The

latter may of course show any of the characteristics of linear

action. There is the iterative, as in Lk 113, the conative,


as in Mk 939 ("do not try to stop him, as you are doing"),

Phil 212 ("set to working out"); and of course the simple

durative passim. Writers differ in their preferences between

the tenses. Thus 1 Pet shows a marked liking for the aorist,

which he has 22 times in commands (2nd pers.), against

6 presents; on the other hand Paul has 9 presents to 1

aorist (apart from LXX citations) in Gal, and 20 to 2 in

Phil. In Mt 5-7 the presents (still 2nd pers.) are 19 to

24, and in corresponding parts of Lk 21 to 16. In seven

passages only do the two evangelists use different tenses, and

in all of them the accompanying variation of phraseology

accounts for the difference in a way which shows how delicately

the distinction of tenses was observed. Mt 542 = Lk 630, and

Mt 611= Lk 113, we have dealt with. Mt 512 has continuous

presents, following o!tan c. aor. subj.: in Lk 623 a little more

stress on the ingressive element in these aorists makes the

addition e]n e]kei h[me

the aor. imper. In Lk 1258 do

Mt 523 has i@sqi eu]now?n, which is curious in view of taxu<.

But since ei]mi< has no aorist, it is not surprising that its

imperative is sometimes quasi-ingressive: cf Mk 534, Lk

1917, and the phrase gnwsto>n e@stw (Ac ter). The punctiliar

streturn, in Mt 539 answers well to the linear pa
hold out, offer, in Lk 629. The vivid phrase a]gwni

ei]selqei?n of Lk 1324 may well preserve more of the original

than the constative ei]se13. In all these cases

some would recognise the effects of varying translation from

an Aramaic original, itself perhaps not wholly fixed in

detail; but we see no trace of indifference to the force of

the tenses. The remaining example is in a quotation from

Ps 69, in which Mt 723 preserves the LXX except in. the verb

a]poxwrei?te, while Lk 1327 modifies the address to e]rga


xwrei?te may have quasi-ingressive sense even in the present.

Third Person We have so far discussed only commands

Imperative. and prohibitions in the 2nd person. Not

much need be added as to the use of the

3rd. Here the veto on the aorist in prohibition is with-

drawn: we need not stay to ask why. Thus in Mt 63 mh>

gnw17. 18 mh> kataba e]pistreya


all come under ordinary aorist categories. As in classical

Greek, the 3rd person is naturally much less common than

Expressions the 2nd. Though the 1st person is not

for First formally brought in under the Imperative,

Person. it will be well to treat it here: a passage

like Mk 1442 e]gei

logically it is fair to speak of three persons in the imperative

mood, since a@gwmen only differs from e]gei

speaker is included with the objects of the command. That

this should affect the tone of the command is of course

inevitable; but indeed all three persons necessarily differ

considerably in the ethos they severally show. The closeness

of connexion between this volitive subjunctive 1st person

and the regular imperative is well seen in Sanskrit, where

the Vedic subjunctive is obsolete in the epic period except

for the 1st person, which stands in the grammars as an

ordinary part of the imperative--bhareima, bharata, bharantu,

like fe

the imperative 1st person is beginning to be differentiated

from other subjunctives by the addition of a@fej, a@fete, a use

which has recently appeared in a papyrus of the Roman

period (OP 413, a@fej e]gw> au]th>n qrhnh

normal in MGr (a@j, with 1st and 3rd subj. making

imperative). This is always recognised in Mt 74 = Lk 642:

why not in 2749 Mk 1536 one has never been able to

see. To force on Mt a gratuitous deviation from Mk seems

a rather purposeless proceeding. Translating both passages

simply "Let us see," the only difference we have left is in

the speakers, which is paralleled by several similar variations

(Hawkins HS 56 ff.). It is possible that Jn 127, a@fej au]th>n

i!na thrh1 has the same construction in the 3rd person, to

be literally rendered like the rest by our auxiliary, "Let

her keep it." (So practically RV text.) The alternative is

"Let her alone: let her keep it," which is favoured by Mk 146.

The acc. au]th

courages our treating a@fej, as a mere auxiliary.2 We shall

1 Teth
2 If we suppose the ti< ko

the rest were trying to stop Mary, the "let her keep it" (thrh

be seeing shortly that i!na c. subj. is an imperative ( i!na

ei@p^j= MGr na> ]p^?j,1 say!). The word had not yet by any

means developed as far as our let, or its own MGr derivative

a@j. Note that it much more frequently takes the infin.

(8 times in NT):2 other parts of the verb take infin. 7 times

and i!na c. subj. once (Mk 1116). Our own word helps us

in estimating the coexistence of auxiliary and independent

verb in the same word: in our rendering of Mt 74 "allow

me" is the meaning, but to substitute "allow" for "let"

in a phrase like "let us go" would be impossible. @Afej

is "let" as in "do let me go," while MGr as is the simple


Perfect The scanty relics of the Perfect Impera-

Imperative. tive need detain us very briefly. In the

active it never existed, except in verbs whose

perfect had the force of a present:3 we find kekrage

in LXX (Is 1431), but no ex. in NT. In the passive it was

fairly common in 3rd person (periphrastic form in plural),

expressing "a command that something just done or about

to be done shall be decisive and final" (Goodwin). We have

this in Lk 1235. The rare 2nd person is, Goodwin adds, "a

little more emphatic than the present or aorist": it shares,

in fact, the characteristic just noted for the 3rd person.

Cf pefi39 with fimw25. The epistolary

e@rrwso in Ac 2330 (a-text), 1529 (passim in papyri), does not

come in here, as the perfect has present meaning.

Substitutes for We are ready now to look at the other

Imperative :- forms of Command—we use the word as

including Prohibition—which supplement the

mood appropriated to this purpose. We shall find that

forms of command can be supplied by all six moods of the

verb--acquiescing for the moment in a convenient misuse

(1) Future of the term "mood," to cover all the subjects

Indicative; of this chapter and the next. The Future

Indicative is exceedingly common in this sense.

may be taken as forbidding interference with an act already begun. That the


Mk 148 as by the phrase in Jn. The action of v.3 is narrated completely (as it

is by Mk), before the interruption is described.

1 Thumb Handb. 100. 2 So Hb P 41 (iii/B.C.). 3 Goodwin MT § 108.


It seems to come to it by two roads, as may be seen by

the study of its negatives. A command like ou] foneu

which can be seen in earlier Greek and becomes abundant in

the Hellenistic vernacular, is proved by its ou] to be a purely

futuristic form. Such a future may have the tone of absolute

indifference, as in the colloquial su> o@y^, "you will see to

that," Mt 274. Or it may show that the speaker takes the

tone of one who does not contemplate the bare possibility of

disobedience. Thus in Euripides Med. 1320 xeiri> d ] ou]

yauwill never be able to touch me," shades

into "you shall never touch me." Against Winer's remark

(p. 397) that this form "was considered milder than the

imperative," we may set Gildersleeve's emphatic denial. "A

prediction may imply resistless power or cold indifference,

compulsion or concession" (Synt. 116). We have also a

rare form in which the negative mh< proclaims a volitive future,

in its origin identical with the mh> poih

cussed. Demosthenes has mh> boulh

e@cestai, BU 197 (i/A.D.), mh> a]fh

its sporadic existence in the vernacular Koinh<. Blass adds

mhdea These passages

help to demonstrate the reality of this rare form against

Gildersleeve's suspicions (Synt. 117).1 Yet another volitive

future is seen in the imperatival use of the future with ou] in

a question: Ac 1310 ou] pau

Command approximate in the NT use of ou] mh< (see below,

pp. 187 ff.), which in Mt 155, Lk 115, Jn 138, Gal 430, and

possibly elsewhere, is most naturally classed as imperatival.

(2) Subjunctive; Next among these forms of command comes

the subjunctive, already largely dealt with.

So we have had the 1st person, as Jn 1431 a@gwmen, Gal 526

mh> ginw

them carried off the old jussive use of the subjunctive in

positive commands of 2nd and 3rd person. The old rule

which in ("Anglicistic") Latin made sileas! an entirely

grammatical retort discourteous to the Public Orator's sileam?

1 To this class I should assign the use of o!pwj c. fut. =imper., as in Plato

337 B o!pwj moi mh> e]rei?j, don't tell me: owns is merely a conjunction, "in

which case." Though common in colloquial Attic, it is mostly ousted in

Hellenistic by i!na; but see Hb P 45, 60, 168 al. (iii/B.C.), Tb P 414 (ii/A.D.),

BU 625 (ii/iii A.D.). [a See pp. 240, 243.


—which in the dialect of Elis produced such phrases as


it"1—has no place in classical or later Greek, unless in Soph.

Phil. 300 (see Jebb). Add doubtfully Ll P 1 vs.8 (iii/B.C.),

Tb P 41426ff. (ii/A.D.). We have dealt already with mh> poih

the historical equivalent of the Latin ne feceris. In the 3rd

person the subjunctive is little used: 1 Co 1611, 2 Co 1116,

2 Th 23 are exx. The tone of these clauses is less peremptory

than that of the imperative, as may be seen from their closeness

to the clauses of warning. Such mh< clauses, with subj.--rarely

future (as in Col 28, Heb 312), which presumably makes the

warning somewhat more instant—are often reinforced by o!ra,


clause historically "depends on" this introductory word, so

that there is an ellipsis when it stands alone. Even where

the apparent governing verb is a real independent word and

not a mere auxiliary—e.g. in Mk 1438, proseu

e@lqhte ei]j peirasmo

real as it is in a phrase like Lk 1215 o[ra?te kai> fula

In Rev 1910 229 we find mh< standing alone after o!ra: of our

colloquial "Don't!" One important difference between pro-

hibition and warning is that in the latter we may have either

present or aorist subjunctive: Heb 1215 is an ex. of the

present. But we must return to these sentences later. An

innovation in Hellenistic is i!na c. subj. in commands, which

takes the place of the classical o!pwj c. fut. indic. Whether

it was independently developed, or merely came in as an

obvious equivalent, we need not stop to enquire. In any case

it fell into line with other tendencies which weakened the

telic force of i!na; and from a very restricted activity in the

vernacular of the NT period it advanced to a prominent

position in MGr syntax (see above, p. 176). In the papyri we

have a moderate number of exx., from which may be cited 2

FP 112 (99 A.D.) e]pe ei!na au]to>n mh>


An earlier ex. appears in a letter of Cicero (Att. vi. 5) tau?ta

1 Cauer 264 (iv/iii B. C.). It must however be noted that Brugmann (Gram.3

500) calls the connexion of this with the prehistoric jussive 3rd sing. "sehr

zweifeihaft": he does not give his reasons.

2 Earlier are Tb P 408 (3 A.D. ), BU 1079 (41 A.D.).


ou#n, prw?ton me tw?n


Greek poets," citing however only Soph. OC 155. W. F.

Moulton, in setting this aside as solitary and dubious,

observes that the scholiast took the passage this way—in

his day of course the usage was common.a An ex. for the 1st

person may be added: BU 48 A.D.) e]a>n a]nab^?j t^? e[ort^?,

i!na o[mo33

h[ de> gunh> i!na fobh?tai to>n a@ndra, which is correlated with

a]gapa29, 2 Co 87, Mk 523:

Gal 210 is the same construction put indirectly. Mk 1051

and parallels have really the same: qe

coalesce in Mk 625 1035, Jn 1724. The combination qe

i!na,b which of course is not confined to quasi-imperative use,

gave birth ultimately to the MGr auxiliary qa< (qena<, etc.),

(3) Optative; forming the future tense. The Optative can

express commands through either of its main

constructions, but its evanescence in the Koinh< naturally

limits NT illustrations. The Optative proper (neg. mh<),

however, does occur in Mk 1114: note that Mt (2119) sub-

stitutes the familiar construction ou] mh<; c. subj. The Poten-

tial with a@n (neg. ou]), as le
(4) Infinitive; found in NT at all.1 The imperatival

Infinitive has been needlessly objected to.

It is unquestionable in Phil 316, Rom 1215, and highly pro-

bable in Tit 22-10: we must not add Lk 93, which is merely

a case of mixed. direct and indirect speech. The epistolary

xai23 2326, Jas 11, is the same in origin. We no

longer need Winer's reminder (p. 397) that the verbs in

1 Th 311, 2 Th 217 35 are optatives; but it is well to note

that our assurance rests on something better than the

accentuation, which any one of us may emend, if he sees fit,

without any MS that counts saying him nay. The infin. for

imper. was familiar in Greek, especially in laws and in

maxims. It survives in the Koinh<, as the papyri show;

on AP 86 (i/A.D.), e]cei?nai, and misqw?sai, cf Radermacher in

RhM lvii. 147, who notes it as a popular use.c Hatzidakis
1 An ex. perhaps occurs in Par P 42 (ii/B.C.), xari tou?

swa b c See p. 248.


shows (p. 192) that in the Pontic dialect, the only form

of MGr in which the infinitive form survives, the infin. is

still used as an imperative for all numbers and persons. We

have therefore every reason to expect it in the NT, and its

rarity there is the only matter for surprise.1 Last among

(5) Participle. these substitutes for the imperative comes the

Participle, the admission of which, despite

Winer's objections (p. 441), is established beyond question by

the papyri. The proof of this will be given when we deal with

the Participle in its place. Here it is sufficient to point out

that a passage like 1 Pet 38f., where adjectives and participles

alike obviously demand the unexpressed e]ste<, gives us the

rationale of the usage clearly enough. It is a curious fact

that while i@sqi occurs 5 times in NT, e@stw (h@tw) 14, and

e@stwsan twice, e]ste<, which we should have expected to be

common, does not appear at all. Gi

but it seems more idiomatic to drop the copula: compare

the normal absence of the verb with predicates like


doubts whether an indicative or an imperative (optative) is

understood. We are accordingly absolved from inventing an

anacoluthon, or some other grammatical device when we come

to such a passage as Rom 129-19, where adjectives and parti-

ciples, positive and negative, in imperative sense are inter-

rupted by imperatives in vv. 14. 16. 19 and infinitives in v.15.

The participles are obviously durative in their action: this is

well seen in v.19, where e]kdikou?ntej, meaning either "do not

avenge yourselves (whenever wronged)" iterative sense—

or "do not (as your tendency is)" (supr. p. 125), is strongly

contrasted with the decisive aorist do

make room for the Wrath2 (which alone can do justice on

wrong)." The infinitives are appropriate in the concise

maxim of v.15. Assuming the cogency of the vernacular

1 See Deissmann BS 344. I do not however think there is any real ellipsis

of a verb of command: see below, p. 203. Historically there is probably no

ellipsis even in the epistolary xai

claims this also as a Hebraism! See Thumb, Hellen. 130 f.; also Meisterhans3

244-6, for its use in decrees.

2 So the RV in the First Revision, and the American Revisers, beyond all

question rightly. It is one more example of the baneful effects of the two-

thirds rule upon the RV.


evidence given on p. 223 below, we may select the following

as probable exx. of imperatival participle from the list of

passages in which the absence of such evidence compelled

Winer l.c. to adopt other interpretations1 :--1 Pet 31.7 218

48ff.: in this last passage e@xontej might of course be con-

structed with nh

this way to avoid an asyndeton. But pro> pa

duces a series of asyndetic precepts, in which filo

diakonou?ntej must have the same construction. To supply

the imperative idea (as in 411) seems simplest, though of

course vv.8-11 are all still dependent on the imperatives of

v.7. Since Peter is evidently given to this construction, we

may take 212 in the same way, though it would pass as an

easy constr. ad sensum with v. 11: one would be inclined to add

114, but Hort's alternative must be noted.2 These are all the

passages we can accept from Winer's list of exx. proposed; a

glance at the unrecorded remainder will vividly show what

astounding fatuities, current in his day, the great grammarian

had to waste his space in refuting. But we may extend the

list somewhat. Paul was not so fond of this construction as

his brother apostle: note how in 1 Pet 31, echoing Eph 522,

the u[potasso

(according to B and Jerome) left an ellipsis, having used the

verb just before in a regular sequence. But the exx. we have

already had are conclusive for Paul's usage. Add Col 313

(note the imperative to be supplied after pa17),

2 Co 911.13 and Eph 42.3 (cf 1 Pet 212).3 In 2 Co 824 e]ndei-


the reason why WH relegate it to the margin): it is how-

ever obvious that the e]ndei

is not likely to be original as against the participle, which

would challenge correction. The imper. in Versions counts

for little, if we are right in our account of the idiom; but

the participle ustaiknyandans in Wulfila is a noteworthy piece

1 We follow Winer's order, tacitly agreeing with his explanation when we

pass over a passage cited. The exx. in which the ptc. would be indicatival will

be dealt with below. (An important ex. is added on p. 240.)

2 I must withdraw 57, cited in Expos. VI. x. 450: the participle there goes

closely with tapeinw7 was meant—"sed mnhmoniko>n a[ma

as Cicero says. 3 2 Co l.c. may be for indic. (so virtually RV).

of evidence on the other side. 2 Co 911 is more simply ex-

plained this way than by the assumption of a long parenthesis.

Rom 1311 means "and this (do) with knowledge," the parti-

ciple being rather the complement of an understood imperative

than imperative itself. Heb 135 gives us an ex. outside

Peter and Paul. With great hesitation, I incline to add

Lk 2447, punctuating with WHmg: "Begin ye from Jeru-

salem as witnesses of these things." The emphatic u[mei?j,

repeated in v.49, thus marks the contrast between the Twelve,

for whom Jerusalem would always be the centre, and one to

be raised up soon who would make the world his parish:

the hint is a preparation for Luke's Book II. There are

difficulties, but they seem less than the astonishing breach of

concord which the other punctuation forces on so correct a

writer. (See p. 240.) On this usage in general W. F. Moulton

(WM 732 n.) sided with Winer, especially against T. S. Green's

suggestion that it was an Aramaism; but he ends with

saying "In Heb 135, Rom 129ff., it must not be forgotten

that by the side of the participles stand adjectives, with

which the imperative of ei#nai is confessedly to be supplied."

This is, as we have seen, the most probable reason of a use

which new evidence allows us to accept without the mis-

givings that held back both Winer and his editor. It is not

however really inconsistent with Lightfoot's suggestive note

on Col 316, in which he says, "The absolute participle, being

(so far as regards mood) neutral in itself, takes its colour

from the general complexion of the sentence. Thus it is

sometimes indicative (e.g. 2 Co 75, and frequently), some-

times imperative (as in the passages quoted [Rom 129f. 16f.,

Eph 42f., Heb 135, 1 Pet 212(?) 31. 7. 9. 15. 16,]), sometimes opta-

tive (as [Col] 22, 2 Co 911, cf Eph 317)." The fact is, when

we speak of a part of ei#nai being "understood," we are

really using inexact language, as even English will show.

I take the index to my hymn-book and note the first line of

three of Charles Wesley's hymns: "Happy the souls that

first believed," "Happy soul that free from harms," "Happy

soul, thy days are ended." In the first, on this grammatical

principle, we should supply were, in the second is (the), while

we call the third a vocative, that is, an interjection. But

the very "!"-mark which concludes the stanza in each case


shows that all three are on the same footing: "the general

complexion of the sentence," as Lightfoot says, determines

in what sense we are to take a grammatical form which is

indeterminate in itself.

Some Elliptical A few more words are called for upon

Imperative the subject of defective clauses made into

Clauses commands, prayers, imprecations, etc., by the

exclamatory form in which they are cast, or

by the nature of their context. In Rom 1311 and Col 317 we

have already met with imperatives needing to be supplied

from the context: Mt 2719.25, Col 46, Gal 15 (see Lightfoot)

and Jn 2019 are interjectional clauses, and there is nothing

conclusive to show whether imperative or optative, or in

some like clauses (e.g. Lk 128) indicative, of ei#nai would be

inserted if the sentence were expressed in full logical form.

Other exx. may be seen in WM 732 But there is one

case of heaped-up ellipses on which we must tarry a little,

that of Rom 126-8. There is much to attract, despite all the

weight of contrary authority, in the punctuation which

places only a comma at end of v.5, or—what comes to nearly

the same thing—the treatment of e@xontej as virtually equi-

valent to e@xomen: "But we have grace-gifts which differ

according to the grace that was given us, whether that of

prophecy (differing) according to the measure of our faith, or

that of service (differing) in the sphere of the service, or he

that teaches (exercising—e@xwn—his gift) in his teaching, or

he that exhorts in his exhorting, he who gives (exercising this

charism) in si gleness of purpose, he who holds office in a

deep sense of responsibility, he who shows compassion in

cheerfulness." In this way we have dia


is taken up in each successive clause, in nearly the same

sense throughout: the durative sense of e@xw, hold and so

exercise, must be once more remembered. But as by advanc-

ing this view we shall certainly fall under the condemnation

for "hardihood pronounced by such paramount authorities

as SH, we had better state the alternative, which is the justi-

fication for dealing with this well-known crux here. The

imperatival idea, which on the usual view is understood in

the several classes, must be derived from the fact that the


prepositional phrases are successively thrown out as inter-

jections. If we put into words the sense thus created,

perhaps e@stw will express as much as we have the right to

express: we may have to change it to w#men, with e]n t^?

diakoni<%, ("let us be wrapped up in," like e]n tou

1 Ti 415). In this way we arrive at the meaning given in

paraphrase by the RV.

The We take next the most live of the

Subjunctive. Moods, the only one which has actually

increased its activities during the thirty-two

centuries of the history of the Greek language.1 According to

the classification adopted by Brugmann,2 there are three main

divisions of the subjunctive, the volitive, the deliberative, and

the futuristic. Brugmann separates the last two, against W.

G. Hale, because the former has mh< as its negative, while the

latter originally had ou]. But the question may well be

asked whether the first two are radically separable. Prof.

Sonnenschein well points out (CR xvi. 16 6) that the "deli-

berative" is only "a question as to what is or was to be done."

A command may easily be put in to the interrogative tone:

witness oi#sq ] ou]#n o{ dra?son; quin redeamus? (= why should

we not? answering to redeamus = let us), and our own "Have

some?" The objection to the term "deliberative," and to the

separation of the first two classes, appears to be well grounded.

It should further be observed that the future indicative has

carried off not only the futuristic but also the volitive and deli-

berative subjunctives; cf such a sentence as ei@pwmen h} sigw?men;

h} ti< dra3 With the caveat already suggested, we may

(1) Volitive; outline the triple division. The Volitive has

been treated largely under the substitutes for

the imperative. We must add the use with mh< in warning,

which lies near that in prohibition; cf Mt 259. Intro-

ductory words like fobou?mai, sko
1 So if we start from the mention of the Achaians on an Egyptian monu-

ment of 1275 B. C.— ]Akaiwasa= ]AxaiFw?j, the prehistoric form of ]Axaioi<. See

Hess and Streitberg in Indog. Forsch. vi. 123 ff.

2 Gram.3 490 ff.

3 Eurip. Ion 771. On the subjunctive element in the Greek future see

above, p. 149. Lat. ero, faxo, Greek pi

e@domai and e@fagon), xe


determine the construction: thus Heb 41 was really "Let us

fear! haply one of you may . . !"a out of the Volitive

arose the great class of dependent clauses of Purpose, also

paratactic in origin. The closeness of relation between

future and subjunctive is seen in the fact that final clauses

with o!pwj c. fut. were negatived with mh<: the future did not

by any means restrict itself to the futuristic use of the mood

which it pillaged. On the so-called Deliberative we have

(2) Deliberative; already said nearly enough for our purpose.

It is seen in questions, as Mk 1214 dw?men h}

mh> dw?men; Mt, 2333 pw?j fu14 pw?j e]pikale

The question may be dependent, as Lk 954 qe1

ib. 58, with cf Marcus viii. 50, e@xousi pou? au]ta> r[iWe see it both with and without i!na in Lk 1841. In the

form of the future we meet it in sentences like Lk 2249 ei]


be recognised in Mt 113 e!teron prsdokw?men; Finally, the

(3) Futuristic. Futuristic is seen still separate from the

future tense in the Homeric kai> pote< tij


Its primitive use reappears in the Koinh<, where in the later

papyri the subjunctive may be seen for the simple future.

Blass (p. 208) quotes it occurring as early as the LXX,

Is 3324 a]feq^? ga>r au]toij h[ a[marti2 So Ac 734 (LXX).

From the futuristic subjunctive the dependent clauses with


from this division of the subjunctive, has trespassed here

from the earliest times. There is one passage where the

old use of the subjunctive in comparisons seems to outcrop,

Mk 426 w[j a@nqrwpoj ban spo kaqeu

all pres. subj).3b Mr Thackeray quotes Is 72 1711 314. To

place this use is hard—note Brugmann's remarks on the impossi-

bility of determining the classification of dependent clauses in

general,—but perhaps the futuristic suits best: cf our "as a man

will sow," etc. The survival of this out-of-the-way subjunc-

tive in the artless Greek of LXX and Mk is somewhat curious;

1 MGr. qa> ei]pou?me; is simple future, shall we say? 2 See p. 240.

3 It must be noted that Blass2 (p. 321) calls this impossible, and inserts e]aBut xBDLD and the best cursives agree on this reading: why should they agree

on the lectio ardua? [Wj e]a
a See p. 248. b See p. 249.


it is indeed hardly likely, in the absence of evidence from the

intermediate period, that there is any real continuity of

usage. But the root-ideas of the subjunctive changed

remarkably little in the millennium or so separating Homer

from the Gospels; and the mood which was more and more

winning back its old domain from the future tense may well

have come to be used again as a "gnomic future" without

any knowledge of the antiquity of such a usage. Other

examples of this encroachment will occur as we go on.

Tenses. The kind of action found in the present,

aorist, and perfect subjunctive hardly needs

further comment, the less as we shall have to return to

them when we deal with the dependent clauses. One result

of the aorist action has important exegetical consequences,

which have been very insufficiently observed. It affects rela-

tive, temporal or conditional clauses introduced by pronoun or

conjunction with a@n (often e]a

are all futuristic, and the a@n ties them up to particular occur-

rences. The present accordingly is conative or continuous or

iterative: Mt 62 o!tan poi^?j e]lehmosuart

for doing alms," o!tan nhsteu

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