Date: Wed, 11 Oct 1995 10:31:57 -0700 From: Sylvia Swift Subject: Re: as it were i love this list! i thought this thread was just fun, but it has turned out to be very useful to me; i had completely failed to notice that a form such as "if i was" *is* marked compared to indicative. even before bill smith's useful post, i had been bothered by my inability to completely account for the relation of subjunctive (especially in if constructions) to sequence of tenses. when i have studied foreign languages (french, latin, russian), the units introducing subjunctive have focussed on sequence of tenses and temporal relationship between clauses. i think this is underemphasized in the teaching of subjunctive in english (kevin, if you're still on the list, crews' _random house handbook_ is better at this than o'hare's handbook). i now wonder if most americans who think the subjunctive is dead or dying made my mistake, or if they're talking about the death of such constructions as "if this be treason," etc. sylvia swift madonna[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]