Thrasymachus CHAPTER XVIII


a$ mh\ oi}da ou0d' oi!omai ei0de/nai * 

Those things I do not know, I do not think I know. 


You have now learned to form and use the following verbs:

Continuous action (stem coming from the first principal part): present and imperfect indicative, active, middle / passive; present imperative; present infinitive and participle, active, middle / passive.

Future tense (stem coming from the second principal part for active and middle, sixth principal part for passive): indicative, infinitive, participle, active, middle, and passive.

Punctual action (stem coming from the third principal part for active and middle, sixth principal part for passive): aorist indicative, active, middle, and passive; infinitive and participle, active, middle, and passive.

In addition to verbs in the indicative, infinitive, and participle mood, you have also seen verbs in the imperative mood, active middle and passive voice. These verbs give direct commands.





As you would expect, the future participle (i.e., the verbal adjective that expresses future action) is formed from the future stem (second principal part for active and middle, last principal part for passive):



 lu/swn -ousa -on  luso/menoj -h -on  luqhso/menoj -h -on

While its literal translation is "about to set free," or "going to set free," the future participle, sometimes following w(j, often expresses the purpose for which some other action is taken.

o( Qrasu/maxoj siga~| w(j maqhso/menoj pa/nta.

Thrasymachus is quiet in order to learn everything.

or so that he might learn

or to learn





Subjunctive and optative are two more moods of the Greek verb. Like the other moods, they can be continuous, made from the present stem, or punctual, made from the aorist stem. They use easily identifiable personal endings. They do not use the augment.

The general idea of the subjunctive and optative moods is that they express actions that may or may not actually take place, as opposed to the indicative mood, used for actions that do actually take place. In English, we often use helping verbs such as "may," "might," "should'" or "would" to express the "iffy" meaning of a verb.

You are familiar with the idea that it is a verb's mood that indicates its function. Subjunctive and optative moods have several different functions, occurring in several different types of independent and dependent clauses. In Thrasymachus Chapter XVIII you have seen some examples of these two moods used to express the purpose for which some other action is taken. Look at Thrasymachus page 266, number 57, for some examples of sentences with subjunctive and optative verbs expressing purpose.

ai( gunai~kej a)pofe/rousi ta\ i(ma/tia i#na lou/swsin.

The women carry off the clothes in order to wash (them) or to wash (them) or so that they might wash (them.)

e)/rxontai oi( filo/sofoi i#na paideu/wsi ta\ paidi/a.

The philosophers are coming to teach the children

In English, we can use a number of different expressions to give the idea of purpose. Very commonly, we just use an infinitive, "to wash." In Greek, unlike in English, the verb that expresses purpose, in the subjunctive or optative mood, will have a distinctive personal ending. A clause that expresses purpose will usually start with i#na, w(j, or o#pwj.

If the verb in the main clause is in a past tense, the verb in the purpose clause may be in the optative mood:

ai( gunai~kej a)pe/feron ta\ i(ma/tia o#pwj lou/saien.

The women were carrying off the clothes in order to wash them.

h!lqon oi( filo/sofoi i#na paideu/oien ta\ paidi/a.

The philosophers came to teach the children.





The subjunctive endings, which follow patterns you know, are characterized by long vowel sounds:


 Active  Middle/Passive
 lu/-w  lu/-wmai
 lu/-h|j  lu/-h| (-hsai)
 lu/-h|  lu/-htai
 lu/-wmen lu-w/meqa
 lu/-hte  lu/-hsqe
 lu/-wsi  lu/-wntai

See Thrasymachus page 67 for the vowel patterns of the contracted verbs in the present subjunctive.


 Active  Middle  Passive
 lu/s-w  lu/s-wmai  luqw~
 lu/s-h|j  lu/s-h| (-hsai)  luqh~|j
 lu/s-h|  lu/s-htai  luqh|~
 lu/s-wmen  lus-w/meqa  luqw~men
 lu/s-hte  lu/s-hsqe  luqh~te
 lu/s-wsi  lu/s-wntai  luqw~si




The optative endings, which also follow familiar patterns, are characterized by the sound of the iota:

 Active  Middle/Passive
 lu/-oimi  lu-oimhn
 lu-oij  lu/-oio (oiso)
 lu/-oi  lu/-oito
 lu/-oimen lu-oi/meqa
 lu/-oite  lu/-oisqe
 lu/-oien  lu/-ointo

See Thrasymachus page 68 for the vowel patterns of the contracted verbs in the present optative.

Aorist optative forms will be introduced in Chapter XIX.

















Look at these forms very carefully to see familiar patterns and new ones. Notice the accents and breathing marks that will help you distinguish these forms from others. Now compare these forms to those of the verb ei}mi (the verb "to go"), Thrasymachus page 68. What Greek letter shows up as the stem of most of the forms of ei}mi? Learning to recognize correctly all of the forms of ei}mi and ei)mi/ is important, so it is worth the trouble to pause and identify each form as you meet it in reading, until you have learned them all thoroughly.



Reread Thrasymachus Chapter XVIII very carefully and notice each verb form. Identify all of the future participles, subjunctives and optatives. Look for expressions of purpose throughout the chapter.



 h( Nausika/a

 h( Nausika/a in Perseus

Forward to Chapters XIX and XX

Back to Contents