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subordinate verbs incipiant errent.
The only grammatical point he touches in this Eclogue is the peculiar ellipse 74, which he supplies correctly.
In his first volume, indeed, he has generally neglected to deal with questions of mood. In the two others he is somewhat more alive to their importance. Aen. ii. 94:
me, fors siqua tulisset,
Here he says: 'the pluperfect is used on account of the oratio obliqua, as in l. 189, iii. 652, ix. 41, which confirms Donaldson's opinion that the so-called futurum exactum is really only the perf. subj.''
This note is strange. Since oratio obliqua affects mood more than tense in a subordinate verb, we might suppose pluperfect a lapse for pluperfect subjunctive, if the context did not shew tense to be in the writer's mind rather than mood.
As the other two passages which C. cites (also cited by me in Virg. Syntax) likewise have a pluperf. subj. (fuisset), this adds to the probability that he was thinking of tense more than of mood. At iii. 652, he merely refers to ii. 94, though in that place the construction (huic me quaecumque fuisset addisi) is not actual but virtual oratio obl., of which, however, Conington had no clearly defined notion. On ix. 41, indeed, where the oratio obliqua is of the form will-speech (neu auderent), he does say correctly that 'fuisset' in the oratio recta would be fuerit. The conclusion in his mind was
1 The opinion said here to be confirmed is quite untenable. All tenses of the Thought-mood may indeed on occasion convey the idea of futurity : but this does not prove that the Fact-mood has no tense of its own conveying exact futurity, while instances may be cited by the hundred to prove that it has. It is more philosophically true to complete the cycle of tenses alike in each mood thus :
Pres. Fut. 1. Imperf. Perf. Fut. 2. Plup. F.M. rego regam
regebam rexi Th. M. regam (regam) regerem rexerim (rexerim) rexissem.
Aen. vii. 272:
hunc illum poscere fata. He says, 'hunc illum esse quem fata poscunt,' betraying unfamiliarity with the laws of suboblique construction : he should have written poscant.' Aen. vii. 427 :
Haec adeo tibi me, placida cum nocte iaceres,
Ipsa palam fari omnipotens Saturnia iussit. His note is: 'Cum iaceres connected with fari, and so marking not the time when Juno gave the commission, but the time when the commission was to be exercised.'
This is true, but inadequately explained : for the connection with fari has little to do with it: 'iubet me fari cum iaceas' would be as correct as iussit me fari cum iaceres.' Iussit' determines tense, iussit fari' mood. Aen. vii. 766 :
Namque ferunt fama Hippolytum, postquam arte novercae
caeli venisse sub auras &c.
Here C. simply and truly says: the subj. is accounted
. for by the oratio obliqua.' It is curious, however, that here
occidisset, explesset,' would be more normally correct : but as Virgil could not get in the former word, he compromises the tenses by making them aoristic.
In the remaining places cited by me (V. S.) under this head (which are twenty in number), C. makes no remark about mood.
(2) Mood in subordination to virtual oratio obliqua.
(See p. 664, and Appendix II. to 'Public School Latin Primer.')
Of this subject Conington evidently had no definite knowledge, but only vague glimpses, here and there appearing. Nor could he gain more than this from such a Syntax as Madvig's; the use of which in English schools and colleges
has been seriously detrimental to the thorough knowledge of Latin compound construction.
Geo. i. 415:
Haud, equidem credo, quia sit divinitus illis
So C. prints, and says, 'it seems better to follow Reiske in pointing "haud, equidem credo" than to keep the common punctuation "haud equidem credo." Equidem credo is thrown in modestly.'
This is strange: for, in any case, the reason denied is denied by one who believes the denial just, and that could only be the poet here. Haud equidem occurs four times elsewhere in V., non equidem thrice, and in no place is there any stop between the two adverbs. But he gives no account of the mood in 'sit.' This is left for his reader to discover. Non quod, non quia, it is true, often take a subj. where no verb appears. But why? because the denial of an invalid reason contains in itself a virtual oratio obliqua, after which usually follows an adversative conjunction, as 'verum' here, with the true reason. But here, where the denial is accompanied with the verb expressing the poet's personal belief, for my own part I do not believe (that the rooks caw and rustle in the boughs because &c.: but &c.'), the words of the oratio obliqua may be at once supplied; viz. 'ingeminare &c. et strepitare' &c. See Append. II. to 'P. S. L. Primer.'
Aen. v. 621:
Here, taught, as he owns, by Jahn and Forbiger, he has a glimpse of the true reason of the mood: 'it makes us think of Beroe as Iris thought of her.' Yes: it makes V. say virtually of Iris: 'voluit se esse eam Beroen, cui . . . fuissent.' This is a good instance of virtual oratio obliqua.
Aen. vi. 199:
illae tantum prodire volando Quantum acie possent oculi servare sequentum.
Here, again, he says, 'possent is rightly explained by Forbiger, as indicating the object of the doves in flying onwards.' Yes: but if asked how does possent' indicate this, could he have answered, 'because its mood shews it to be in dependence on a virtual oratio obliqua, i.e. that the hist. infin. prodire prodire se voluerunt?' No: for he had not a clear rule in mind enabling him to do so.
Aen. viii. 129:
Non equidem extimui Danaum quod ductor et Arcas
C. says: 'fores seems to be used on the analogy of those cases where quod with subj. gives a reason which the speaker denies to be the true one, though what is denied here is not the reason, but the fact which the reason might have justified.' On the ground so stated the analogy fails altogether. Here is contained a virtual oratio obliqua, 'non extimescendum mihi putavi.'
Aen. viii. 650:
Illum indignanti similem similemque minanti
C. merely says: 'auderet the subj. expressing Porsenna's feeling. Too curtly stated. The subjunctives depend on words expressing Porsenna's feeling: indignanti, minanti = indignari se monstranti, minari se monstranti.
Aen. ix. 289:
In my preface to the Public School Latin Grammar' 'Ed. 4), I have pointed out the error of Madvig and Conington especting this passage. See also my note upon it showing that 'quod' depends on the virtual oratio obliqua contained in testis (me hanc insalutatam linquere).
In nine other passages cited by me in V. Syntax the mood is not touched in Conington's notes. Among these 'possent' in Aen. i. 367 is a very notable omission. SeePublic School Latin Primer,' p. 160.