English Verb: Mood
Mood in verbs refers to one of three attitude of a writer or speaker towards a particular statement when he makes it. There are three types of moods:
ii. Imperative .
The verb in the first three types of sentences is always in finite form.
1. The indicative mood is a statement of fact or strong probability. It is a declarative sentence.
i. Ali left the college two years ago.
ii. A leopard runs faster than any other animal of prey.
iii. Hassan reads the Quran daily.
iv. I am a teacher.
v. He is a good student.
vi. He does run three miles a day.
2. This mood is also used to ask question i.e. interrogative sentences.
i. Where do you go every Sunday?
ii. What is your name?
iii. Are you a student of this college?
iv. Why have you not studied English well?
3. This mood is also used to express a supposition which is assumed as a fact.
i. If he is a cheat, he deserves to be punished.
(assuming as a fact that he is a cheat)
If the if-clause in a conditional sentence has likehood of the condition, even barely possible, the mood is indicative.
(Condition) If wages are increased, (result) prices will rise.
An increase in wages is more than likely, so the mood is indicative the verb is are. If the condition is impossible or contrary to fact, the mood is subjunctive.
1. The imperative mood is used to express, commands, requests, advice, prayer, suggest etc. (It is simply an imperative sentence beginning with a verb).
i. Fight pollution!
ii. Please send us the following items.
iii. Let us work hard.
iv. Let us help the poor.
v. Have mercy on us.
vi. Show us the right path.
2. The imperative mood is used when we’re feeling sort of bossish and want to give a directive, strong suggestion, order or request. For example:
i. Get your homework done before you watch television tonight.
ii. Please include cash payment with your order form.
iii. Get out of the town!
Note: There is no subject in these imperative sentences. The pronoun you is the “understood subject” in imperative sentences.
The subjunctive is used in formal English when we wish to express the importance of something. It usually follows verbs like recommend, insist or suggest, and other words that express these ideas, such as vital, important or essential.
The subjunctive looks - like the infinitive form of the verb and all persons (including the third person singular) are written or spoken without an “s”. It takes the same form whether we are referring to the present, future or past.
We recommend that all staff acknowledge receipt of this memo.
i. They insisted that we go with them.
ii. It is vital that children remain in the school grounds, until their parents arrive.
iii. They claimed it was essential that the security system be checked.
In the negative form, the subjunctive does not take the word do:
i. They insisted that we not stay behind.
ii It is vital that children not leave the school grounds until their parents arrive. . .
Note that the subjunctive form of the verb to, be is be for all persons:
I be / you be/he be / she be, etc.
We do not have to use the subjunctive, and in fact we commonly avoid it (especially in British English) by using the structure should + infinitive:
i. We recommend that all staff should acknowledge receipt of this memo.
ii. They insisted that we should go with them.
iii. It is vital that children should remain in the school grounds until their parents arrive.
iv. They claimed it was essential that the security system should be checked.
The subjunctive is also used in some fixed phrases:
i. Be that as it may, you are still required to attend,
ii. If they insist on that attitude, then so be it. . .
iii. Heaven forbid!
iv. God save the Queen!
The use of the verb form were in some conditional sentences is also a form of the subjunctive:
i. If I were you, I’d see a doctor.
ii. He wishes he were here with you.
The subjunctive mood is used in dependent clauses that do the following:
1. express a wish; i. I wish he were here.
2. begin with if and express a condition that does not exist (is contrary to fact)
i. If only I were rich.
3. begin with as if and as though clauses when such clauses describe a speculation or condition contrary to fact;
i. She sings if/as though she were a singer.
4. Express a demand, requirement, request, or suggestion.
i. She wishes her mother were here.
ii. If Alt were more aggressive, he’d be a better hockey player.
iii. We would have passed if we had studied harder.
iv. He acted as if he were guilty.
v. I requested that he be present at the hearing.
5. The present tense of the subjunctive uses only the base form of the verb:
i. He demanded that the student use two-inch margins in his copies.
ii. She suggested that we be on time tomorrow.
6. The past tense of the subjunctive has the same forms as the indicative except for the verb to be, which uses were regardless of the number of the subject.
i. If I were seven feet tall, I’d be a great basketball player.
ii. He wishes he were a better student.
iii. If you were rich, we wouldn’t be in this mess.
iv. If they were faster, we could have won that race.
The subjunctive mood is. used to express statements of hypothetical conditions or express wishes, recommendations, requirements or suggestions. We use different modal auxiliaries. Such as can, could, may, might, ought, must, should, would.
and India ever make peace? Pakistan
Permission: Boys cannot go to girls' branch.
The object of wish: I wish I could go to
every year. Mecca
Advice: Students hoping to get into medical college should take biology.
ought to increase budget for education. Pakistan
These sentences are examples of the Subjunctive Mode, which refers to the expression of a hypothetical, wishful, or imaginary thought. Sentences using wish and if usually indicate. Subjunctive Mode and require using were as the to be verb form.
When using Subjunctive Mode with verbs besides were, use the past tense or past perfect tense.
i. I wish I had studied more for the test.
ii. It would be better if you had brought the ice cream in a cooler.
Subjunctive - Special Verb Forms:
The present subjective uses first form (bare infinitive form) for all subjects, (even with he she it or singular noun. it doesn’t use ‘s’ or ‘es’.
God have mercy on us.) It is used to express a hope, a requirement a recommendation or a suggestion. Look at the following examples which give a difference between subjective and indicative moods.
God has mercy on us. The Prime Minister lives.
A commerce student takes accounting.
The board’s meetings are closed. .
God have mercy on us! Long live the Prime Minister.
The college requires that every commerce student take accounting.
The employees demand that the meetings be closed.
2. The past subjunctive uses the second form (past tense form) of the verb. Only were is used as past form of the verb to be with both singular and plural subjects. I wish’ll were a great man.
Past subjunctive is used to express a wish for something in present.
I have five million.
I am a poor man.
I am an uneducated person.
I live in
I wish (that) I had five million.
I wish (that) I were a millionaire. I wish (that) I were an educated man.
I wish (that) I lived in
3. The Past Perfect subjunctive uses’ the same form as the common past perfect. It is used to express a wish for something in the past.
I studied a little in my life.
I was in
I wish (that) I had studied a lot.
I wish (that) I had been in
The uses of Subjunctive Mood:
The Indicative mood expresses a. fact and some times a condition; the Imperative expresses an order; the Subjunctive a purpose, a wish, a condition, or a doubt.
The auxiliaries may, might, should, would, are used to form Subjunctive equivalents.
In this case the verb in the Subjunctive mood is preceded by the conjunction that or lest (lest == that not). The Auxiliary verbs “may” and “might” are used after “that” and “should” after “lest.”
I gave you a prize.
I shall keep your book.
That you may work well again.
Lest you should lose it.
That you may not lost it.
I gave you a prize.
I kept your book.
That you might work well again.
Lest you should lost it.
That you might not lose it.