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Subjunctive / conditional participles?

Discussion in 'All Languages' started by Gavril, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. Gavril Senior Member

    English, USA
    Hello,

    I don't know if I've ever seen a language that uses a special participle for the subjunctive or conditional -- i.e., a participle that indicates what might happen or could have happened, rather than what has happened/is happening.

    For example, take a sentence like,

    The winning team will receive a prize of $1,000.

    Here, "winning" refers to something that hasn't happened yet, and indeed might never happen (perhaps the match/tournament will be cancelled, etc.). If "winning" were converted into a finite verb ("The team that wins ..."), some languages might translate it with the subjunctive: e.g., in Spanish,

    El equipo que gane [subjunctive] recibirá un premio de $1,000.

    Do you know of any languages that would translate "que gane" with a special participial form, meaning something like "maybe-winning"?
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2012
  2. fdb Senior Member

    Cambridge, UK
    French (France)
    An interesting question. In classical Indo-European languages like Sanskrit, Avestan, Greek subjunctive, optative and participle are separate verbal modes. Thus there can be no “subjunctive participle”. But Greek does have a future participle, which would be used in sentences like yours: “the to-be-winning team”.
     
  3. merquiades

    merquiades Senior Member

    France
    USA Northeast
    Hello,
    I'm not sure this is what you're looking for, Gavril. French has a present participle paralleling the English sentence but it's not subjuntive/conditional.

    L'équipe gagnante recevra un prix de mille dollars.

    I'm not sure what "ganador" would qualify as in a sentence like this .... El equipo ganador recibirá un premio de mil dólares.

    I've read that Russian has a lot of participles with different nuances but I'm not sure how to use them. Perhaps Slavic languages would be a place to start your research.
     
  4. Gavril Senior Member

    English, USA
    Hi fdb,

    What do you mean by verbal modes? The term "participle" normally refers to a syntactic category (i.e., a participle can modify a noun in the same way that an adjective can) rather than a modal category like subjunctive/indicative/etc.

    Now that I think about it, the Greek verbal adjective in -téos may normally function like a debitive (= "should") participle rather than an indicative one: e.g., brōtéon deîpnon might normally mean "a meal that should/must be eaten" (debitive) rather than "a meal that will be eaten" (indicative). However, I've forgotten too much of my Greek to be sure if this is the normal pattern.

    Similarly, the Latin future passive participles (-endus / -andus) may tend to have an implication of "should"/"must": thus edendus cibus would tend to mean "food that must be eaten" rather than "food that will be eaten". However, I think that the future active participle (e.g., esurus "one who will eat") is solidly indicative as long as the surrounding verbal context is indicative. (Again, someone more versed in Latin will have to confirm all of this.)
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2012
  5. Gavril Senior Member

    English, USA
    The form gagnante looks like Sp. ganante, which can be indicative or subjunctive depending on the context. Could you also use équipe gagnante to mean, e.g., "a winning team" = "a team that wins a lot"?
     
  6. e2-e4 X Senior Member

    Русский
    I don't think so. Russian does indeed have six types of participle (and I guess it is a "champion" among Slavic languages in this respect), but no future participles and no conditional/subjunctive ones. Sometimes we do attach the conditional particle "бы" to participles, but it is rather experimental, not part of the standard language.


    ---------

    The six types are: adjectival active past participle, adjectival active present participle, adjectival passive past participle, adjectival passive present participle, adverbial active past participle, adverbial active present participle.

    Adverbial active participles have a special name in Russian, we don't call them «причастия» ("participles"), but «деепричастия» (roughly, "participles of action"), which refers to their adverbial nature.
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2012
  7. fdb Senior Member

    Cambridge, UK
    French (France)
    What I was trying to say is that the IE participle is neutral with regard to mode (indicative, subjunctive, optative, imperative).This is true of French “gagnante” as well.
     
  8. LilianaB Senior Member

    US New York
    Lithuanian
    I don't think Russian, Polish or the Baltic languages have anything like that, although there are about 13 different participles in Lithuanian.
     
  9. 涼宮

    涼宮 Senior Member

    Sbaeneg/Castellano (Venezuela)
    El equipo que gane recibirá un premio de $1,000.

    Well, you can perfectly say el equipo que ganare recibirá un premio de $1,000, using the future subjunctive. To me, there are 2 nuances, if I use the present subjunctive it means that there will definitely be a winner, however, with the future subjunctive it's uncertain whether there will be any winner, in case the contest allows no winners, of course.

    Japanese would use 2 nouns for expressing ''winning team'' and they don't come from verbs. Nevertheless, those participles can be rendered in JP by using the passive voice, passive continuous voice, continuous tense or potential form, which would work as an adjective. Japanese doesn't have participles as such but relies on the passive voice. But I don't think what you're looking for exists in JP. What I can think of is: 勝てるチーム kateru chiimu, which means ''team that can win', being the nuance one of certainty. 勝つ katsu is the verb in its infinitive/future form, while 勝てる kateru is its potential form, meaning ''can win''.
     
  10. olaszinho Senior Member

    Italy
    Central Italian

    Are all these participles commonly used in spoken Lithuanian?


    If you used the future subjunctive you would sound like Don Quijote :)
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2012
  11. merquiades

    merquiades Senior Member

    France
    USA Northeast
    French wikipedia says Latin, Esperanto and Lithuanian have future participles.

    @Suzumiya. Do you still use the future subjunctive actively that way in Venezuela or is it literary use?
     
  12. 涼宮

    涼宮 Senior Member

    Sbaeneg/Castellano (Venezuela)
    No, unfortunately the future subjunctive in Spanish is only used in religion, literature and legal documents in all Spanish speaking countries. I use it whenever I can because I love it and I don't like that the present or even imperfect subjunctive is used to talk about the future, it's illogical to me. Only Portuguese uses it actively, that I envy.
     
  13. fdb Senior Member

    Cambridge, UK
    French (France)
    Bizarre that they mention a totally artificial language (Esperanto), but not Greek.
     
  14. merquiades

    merquiades Senior Member

    France
    USA Northeast
    Yes, I agree. Bizarre. The people who write the Wikipedia articles mention what they know, not what they don't. That's why I always try to compare the Wikipedia versions in as many languages as possible.
    If I only knew the other languages well enough and had time to do research. :)
    I also found it funny that such a future participle would exist in Esperanto. I thought it was supposed to be a simple language.
     
  15. 涼宮

    涼宮 Senior Member

    Sbaeneg/Castellano (Venezuela)
    It is simple in terms of ''keep it simple, but if you need a wide range of complex nuances, Esperanto does that, too''. Esperanto has many verb conjugations for a lot of things, but the usual thinking is to talk in a simple way.

    You may find this interesting, Merquiades.

    http://esperanto.50webs.com/EsrGrammar-3_08.html
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2012
  16. Gavril Senior Member

    English, USA
    I think it has to do with the desire for symmetry/regularity: Esperanto has a future tense, so it has a future participle to go with that tense.

    To get back on the main topic, does anyone know if the future participle in Lithuanian or Esperanto can have a non-indicative force? E.g., if you wanted to say "That prisoner must be released!", could you use a participial form analogous to Lat. solvendus "one who will/must be released"?
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2012
  17. LilianaB Senior Member

    US New York
    Lithuanian
    Yes, I think they are used -- it depends by whom. The people who use simpler -- more direct language use fewer participles, I think, although I am not sure. Some are used more than others, but all are used.
     
  18. LilianaB Senior Member

    US New York
    Lithuanian
    This will be the participle of necessity, not so much the one of the future. It really depends. You can create a negative or non-indicative form of the participle as nevalgytinas, for example -- one that should not be eaten, but it really depends on the sentence. Many times you have to negate the auxiliary verb rather than the participle. Some that behave more like adjectives can be negated, other's should be used as apart of a construction where an auxiliary verb is negated. Must does not indicate the future, but the necessity, at least in Lithuanian, if you were to translate it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2012

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