Date: Fri, 13 Oct 1995 16:08:50 CDT From: "Donald M. Lance" Subject: Re: If I was When I referred to "old grammar books" in my recent posting on the subjunctive, I was maintaining a slight amount of apico-buccal contact, because lots of recent books like those used in introductory linguistics classes tend to dismiss the subjunctive as something that is almost dead anyway. But we can see from ads-l postings that those reports are, as Twain said once about some other reported demise, somewhat exaggerated. For a recent book to look at, try the big Quirk et al., _A_Comprehensive_ Grammar_of_the_English_Language_ (Longman, 1985). This book has lots of the terminology that Bill Smith was looking for in his posting -- terms like mandative and optative. Quirk et al. describe both British and American usage, including the "should + v" for American present subjunctive. Bill wondered about calling both instances of 'would + v' subjunctive in "If I would have x'd, you wouldn't have y'd." If you say that the first 'would' is subjunctive, you're mixing reference to meaning and reference to the traditional name for the form of a verb. But since on occasion one finds new grammar books dissing old ones, should fogies continue stickling over mere terminology? An unstated part of my suggestion that one compare the examples in Spanish and German review grammar books with their English translations was that in making these comparsons one will find that what is treated as "subjunctive" morphologically in each language will vary to a surprising extent. Another good source for terminology to use in discussing English subjunctive constructions is Marianne Celce-Murcia & Diane Larsen-Freeman, _The_Grammar_ Book:_An_ESL/EFL_Teacher's_Course_ (Newbury House, now Heinle, 1983) -- Ch 25, "Conditional Sentences" pp. 340-359, and the section titled "Verbs, adje ctives, and nouns taking subjunctive complements" on pp. 482-84. If your university library does not have the Quirk book in its reference section, you should make sure they get it. It'll be hard to get a library to buy The Grammar Book as the reference work that it is, because it has "Teacher's" in the title, but a grammarian looking for examples and terminology will find it to be a valuable reference work. The Quirk book has just under 2000 pages and costs somewhere around a hundred bucks. Well worth it. DMLance