Tuesday, October 27, 2009


Yesterday marked the two-week anniversary of truly learning subjunctive tense. Funny how it took me this long to learn a common part of everyday language.

In grammar, the subjunctive mood is a verb mood typically used in dependent clauses to express wishes, commands, emotion, possibility, judgment, opinion, necessity, or statements that are contrary to fact at present. It is sometimes referred to as the conjunctive mood, as it often follows a conjunction. The details of subjunctive use vary from language to language.

So, you'd say things like, "if I were a painter, I'd probably die from lead poisoning." Even though "were" isn't the proper tense for the subject, "I," you use "were" to indicate that what you're talking about hasn't happened.

1 comment:

  1. If I were someone who had to speak in formal circumstances on a regular basis, I would make more of an effort to use the subjunctive. But I think I'm one of the only people I know who even tries at all. You are not alone.