What Is A Subjunctive?

What Is A Subjunctive?


I Am Almost Ashamed To Admit That I Will Stutter When Asked What Is A Figure Of Speech And What Are Parts Of Speech...Though I Speak English As My First Language=/

updated NOV 11, 2009
posted by ChrisDierxoxo

4 Answers


The best way the subjunctive has been explained to me, as a native English speaker, is in reference to the movie The Wizard of Oz. When the Cowardly Lion is singing about being king of the forest, he starts with "If I were king of the forest...". If I were expresses a wish, which may or may not be true or realized at the moment it is stated. Wishes are one use of the subjunctive in Spanish. If you read into it, the subjunctive can be very philosophical, but one of the things the subjunctive emphasizes is uncertainty: looking for someone, wishing for something. I hope this helps!

updated NOV 11, 2009
posted by carolinita
:S I've Never Watched The Wizards Of Oz=/...But You Did Help, Thanks Alot...But I Think I Will Ask My TeacherO.o=] - ChrisDierxoxo, NOV 11, 2009

This is a very common problem for Americans (not sure if also elsewhere). A Spanish teacher at my school says we probably are forced to take foreign language so we have another chance to learn the English grammar they do not make time for.

In any case (hehe), the Wikipedia article seems actually quite fitting for English.

For Spanish, I would check out this

Sorry I can't give you a better answer, but I hope I at least pointed you towards the right direction.

updated NOV 9, 2009
posted by Anajo
That MIght Just Be The Case...Its A Problem In My Country...Well Atleast For Me...English Isn't My Strongest Area I Must Admit...Thanks For Answering=] - ChrisDierxoxo, NOV 9, 2009

alt text ChrisDierxox:

This question about the subjunctive comes up from time to time. Here is a link to an answer that was given at the end of October.

Here is the link ----> The Subjunctive.

I hope this is some help to you. If you still have any more specific or focused questions when you finish reading, please come on back, open a new question thread and ask away. Someone will help.

Chris, I looked at your profile page and I saw that you have asked 3 really "big bite" questions about conjugating verbs, the past (or preterit) tense of verbs and now the subjunctive. Please slow down. I suggest you're moving too fast and that needed information will run through your fingers like water. Span¡shD!ct will still be here when you learn these "big bite" issues one at a time. Lighten up, take it easy, relax and enjoy the learning.



updated NOV 9, 2009
edited by Moe
posted by Moe
Lol...I Agree I Have Asked Three Huge QuestionsO.o And Well Its After 9 And I Am Extremely Tired...So No Knowledge Is Staying With Me. I Am Extremely Grateful For The Answers That You Guys Give And I Will I HAve To Check Out All The LInks Given To Me... - ChrisDierxoxo, NOV 9, 2009
^^ I Ran Out Of Characaters=/...I Just Wanted To End WIth A Thank You=] - ChrisDierxoxo, NOV 9, 2009

Hi Chris. Your questions are good ones and are the basics of understanding grammar. They cannot possibly be dealt with fully here, but I can give you a short overview.

A "figure of speech" is a phrase or short saying whose true meaning goes beyond the phrase´s literal meaning. For example, the saying "a bird in the hand is better than two in the bush" is literally about birds but figuratively it is used to mean roughly "it is better to be satisfied with what you already have than to give that up in order to go chasing greater things that you have little chance at obtaining."

Shorter figures of speech would include things like "he's a blockhead." We don't mean he literally has a block for a head, we mean he seems unintelligent.

Parts of speech refers to how words function in a sentence. In English, generally, there are eight recognized parts of speech, which also have corresponding abbreviations in the dictionary:

  1. verb (vt or vi) -- vt = transitive verb; vi = intransitive verb
  2. noun (n)
  3. pronoun (pron.)
  4. adjective (adj.)
  5. adverb (adv.)
  6. preposition (prep)
  7. conjunction (conj.)
  8. interjection (interj.)

One word can have several different parts of speech depending on how it is used in a sentence, usually it will have between 1 to 3 different parts of speech. The word's dictionary entry will usually be separated based on the word's various possible parts of speech.

Subjunctive is a verb mood, which most English speakers don't really learn about. I had a thorough education but it was not until I studied other languages that I encountered the subjunctive mood. Even now I barely understand it. I am just now starting to learn it in earnest because it is very important in Spanish. Don't worry about subjunctive now. But studying verb conjugation is a good idea.

Good luck in your study of English and Spanish.

updated NOV 11, 2009
edited by webdunce
posted by webdunce
Teach Me English!!![Was Originally In Caps] You Have Helped Me Understand A Lil More Of F.O.S...Thanks For Answering=D - ChrisDierxoxo, NOV 11, 2009
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