Conditions and Conditionals: An Investigation of Ancient Greek
 9050631967, 9789050631969

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GERRY W AKKER

CONDITIONS AND CONDITIONALS AN INVESTIGATION

OF ANCIENT GREEK

J.C. GIEBEN, PUBLISHER AMSTERDAM 1 994

No part of this book may be translated or reproduced in any form, by print, photoprint, microfilm, or any other means, without written permission from the publisher. © by G.C. Wakker, 1994 / Printed in The Netherlands / ISBN 90 5063 196 7

To my mother and the memory of my father

CONTENTS

Acknowledgements xi

1.

Introduction 1 1.1 Preliminary remarks 1 1.1.1 Subject matter 1 1.1.2 Theoretical framework 2 1.1.3 A note on the terminology and data used 3 1.2 A survey of the contents of the present study 6 1.3 Introduction to Functional Grammar 12

2.

Conditional clauses in general: state of research 21 2.1 Terminology: condition vs. hypothesis 21 2.2 State of research: theories about conditionals in general 23 2.3 State of research: studies on conditionals in Ancient Greek 35

3.

Theoretical preliminaries for a linguistic description of conditionals in Ancient Greek 43 3.1 Definition of a conditional relationship 43 3.2 Position and function of conditionals 50 3.2.1 Factors adduced to explain Greenberg's Universal of Word Order 14 50 3.2.2 Claims in later studies 52 3.2.3 Position of Greek conditionals: statistics 57 3.2.4 Predicational conditionals 61 3.2.4.1 Predicational conditionals preceding the main clause 61 3.2.4.2 Predicational conditionals following the main clause 72 3.2.4.3 Predicational conditionals interrupting the main clause 77 3.2.4.4 Summarizing remarks 82 3.2.5 Propositional and illocutionary conditionals 84 3.2.6 Main conclusions 88 3.2.7 Excursus: An FG representation of conditionals 90 3.2.7.1 Conditionals and the typology of satellites 90 3.2.7.2 Restrictive conditionals within the layered typology of satellites 95 3.2.7.3 Non-restrictive conditionals and illocutionary operators 98 3.2.7.4 The underlying structure of conditionals 100 3.2.7.5 Conclusion 103

viii

CONTENTS

3.3

4.

Concluding remarks: factors relevant to a formal classification of Ancient Greek conditionals 104 3.3.1 Restrictiveness vs. non-restrictiveness 104 3.3.2 Hypothesis vs. condition 105 3.3.3 Necessary vs. sufficient condition 105 3.3.4 Specific/particular vs. generic/general conditionals 106 3.3.5 Choice of the moods: degrees of probability 111 3.3.6 1ype of discourse 113 3.3.7 Time reference 116 3.3.8 Semantic types of conditional 116 3.3.9 Conclusion: basic factors for a classification of Greek conditionals 117

Preclicational conditionals .and temporals 121 4.1 Introduction 121 4.2 Interactive speech: subordinate clauses with present reference 125 4.2.1 £i with.present indicative 125 4.2.2 e1td etc. with present indicative 130 4.2.3 Counterfactual conditional with present reference 132 4.3 Interactive speech (continued); subordinate clauses with past reference 142 4.3.1 £i with secondary indicative (neutral value) 142 4.3.2 £i with secondary indicative (counterfactual value) 144 4.3.3 Form of counterfactuals 146 4.3.4 The implications of counterfactuals 150 4.3.5 Neutral or counterfactual interpretation 154 4.3.6 e1td etc. with secondary indicative 155 4.3.7 Potential conditional with past reference? 156 4.4 Interactive speech (continued); subordinate clauses with future reference 167 4.4.1 £i with future indicative 167 4.4.2 with (futural) subjunctive 174 4.4.3 £i with optative 176 4.4.4 £1t£ q will be to say something logically weaker than to deny that p or to assert that q, and so less informative; to make a less informative rather than a more informative statement is to offend against the first maxim of Quantity, provided that the more informative statement, if made, would be of interest. There is a general presumption that in the case of p > q a more informative statement would be of interest; no one would be interested in knowing that a particular relation (truth-functional or otherwise) held between two propositions without being interested in the truth-value of at least one of the propositions concerned. The violation of the first maxim of quantity is best explained by the fact that if the speaker would observe the first maxim of quantity and would thus be more informative and would simply assert/deny p or assert q. he would be in conflict with the second maxim of quality (have adequate evidence for what you say). He does not know the truth of p nor of q. only the truth of their relationship. If p, then q is, thus, equivalent with p > q, together with the extra implicature of non-truth-functional reasons for the assertion p > q. Particular types of conditionals are also explained via the maxims and the CP, e.g. the type 'if you're thirsty there is some beer in the fridge'. Here the use of the if-clause is explained· as a device not to violate a maxim, i.e. it is added by the speaker to be in agreement with the maxim of relation (be relevant). I will come back to this in eh. 5. 11

[ •••

]

11

11

speakers are seeking to provide useful information.

32

STATE OF RESEARCH

Grice's theory may be considered •a first step towards a logic of the ordinary language, because he has developed a bridge between formal logic and natural language. In emphasizing the importance of the Cooperative Principle in language use he profoundly influenced the study of pragmatics. There will be ample occasion to point to his work in my description of Greek ei (notably in eh. 5). (iib) What (i) and (iia) have in common is that they both assume the relevance of the material implication for the description of if-then, whether they emphasize the difference ((i)) or the similarity ((ii)) between the two. Although in (iib), just as in (iia), it is assumed that there is no fundamental difference between logic and natural language, in (iib) the material implication is wholly rejected. The main representative of this second theory is S.C. Dik. He offers a synthesis between a logical and a linguistic approach (Dik 1990). Within the framework of FG (see eh. 1.3) he claims that there is no difference between the underlying grammatical form and the logical form of a linguistic expression.18 To explain this he introduces the notion picture .19 Functional Logic (FL) recognizes three truth values: T (true), F (false) and ? (uncer-

18. This view is expressed in the following two hypotheses (Dik 1990: 234): "Hl: underlying linguistic structures, pieces of non-perceptual knowledge, and logical forms can be expressed in one and the same unified cognitive representation language. H2: the representation language used for underlying predications in FG is a good approximation to this cognitive representation language." 19. Pictures are said to have the following properties (Dik 1990: 235-6): (i) they consist of perceptual representations ('images') and conceptual representations; the latter are coded in propositions of the format defined by FG; (ii) they are subject dependent; any picture is somebody's picture; (iii) they are dynamic structures: they may be created, modified and discarded; (iv) they are fmite: they do not contain everything that can be known, but only what X knows at lj; (v) they can be nested: X's picture XP may contain an 'image' of Y's picture YP; (vi) more than one picture may be considered at the same time. An example of a picture representation might run as follows:

YPfo______ T___ a XPfo____

T~a"'---------

In X' s picture at to a is true and in X' s picture of Y' s picture at fo, a is also true (Ta is shared knowledge of X and Y, according to X).

CoNDmONALS

IN GENERAL

33

°

tain).2 Conditionals are considered a means through which a speaker can create a hypothetical picture (HP) which differs in certain crucial ways from his current picture, e.g.

(8)

HP

Ta ➔ TB

?a '0---=---------

SJ>t.L

The speaker S is uncertain about the truth of a at the moment of speaking (to) and creates a hypothetical picture (HP) in which the truth of a entails the truth of ~- Dile makes thus a basic distinction between the current picture of a speaker and a hypothetical picture which he may create alongside his current picture. Apart from the speaker's picture there is also the addressee's picture (cf. n.19) as well as the general picture.21 All these may play a role in the understanding of a particular conditional. Different conditional types (often with different communicative effects) are distinguished and described in terms of different picture constellations. Dile thus provides a systematic account for the relations between form, meaning and communicative usage, while at the same time avoiding the notion of material implication with all its problems. Without going into detail here (see eh. 3.1) I will sketch Dik's main divisions (Dile 1990: 242):

20. 'Uncertainty' may be subdivided according to the degree of probability that is somewhere in the range between 1 and 0, e.g. 'p (fa) = n' means 'it is n probable that a is true'. 21. The general picture may be characterized as the picture which the speaker thinks 'everybody' accepts as being true, cf. Dile (1990: 236).

34

STATE OF RESEARCH

(9) conditional propositional

illocutionary

(condition for the truth of the apodosis)

(condition for the 'relevance' of the truth of the information presented in the main clause to the addressee, e.g. 'if you're thirsty, there is some beer in the fridge')

HP Ta ➔ TJ3

?a; HP Ta ➔ R (TJ3)

potentialis

irrealis

?a; HP Ta ➔ TJ3

Fa; HP Ta ➔ TJ3

Although the notion 'picture' is not totally new22 and the tenn 'hypothetical' in 'hypothetical picture' is perhaps not wholly adequate (cf. eh. 2.1 and 3.1), Dile has, in my opinion, rather successfully created a theoretical framework that ties together logic and linguistics and that is not itself too complicated to function as a descriptive apparatus. I will discuss his division of conditionals in more detail in eh. 3.1 and will come back to his picture constellations when treating the various types of conditionals in Ancient Greek (eh. 4-5). All in all, one may conclude that most philosophical-logical theories about conditionals are not directly applicable to a description of ordinary language conditionals, not even if they try to account for the difference between logic and linguistics. This holds especially for the 'possible world' -approach (see (i) above), since it does not at all address the subject of the relationship between the if-clause and the main clause, which seems essential to account for differences between ordinary language conditionals such as 'if it rains, I'll take an umbrella' and 'if it rains, there is an umbrella in my wardrobe'. If one surveys all attempts to bridge the gap between logic and linguistics,

22. Cf. e.g. the notions 'mental model' modeVrepresentation', see Dile (1990: 258n2).

(Johnson-Laird 1986), and

'discourse

CONDITIONALSIN GENERAL

35

Dik's proposal (iib) seems to have the advantage of being directly applicable to linguistic analysis. Therefore, in the subsequent sections I will often refer to his theoretical framework, while using only those elements of the other approaches that are directly relevant for descriptive linguistics.

2.3 State of research: studies on conditionals in Ancient Greek Most studies on conditionals in Ancient Greek are descriptive, and largely synchronic (i.e. they describe Classical Greek, Homeric Greek or both). Nevertheless, nearly all of them also contain a more or less detailed description of the prehistoric origins and later development of ei-clauses (see eh. 8.4). As I have already indicated (eh. 1.1.1), most descriptive linguistic studies do not, generally speaking, bother about such theoretical questions as the exact definition of a conditional relation or its position and precise function in the sentence. This also applies to Ancient Greek: most grammars (Chantraine, Goodwin, Humbert, KG, Monro, SD, Stahl) and monographs or articles (van Pottelbergh 1939; Pritchett 1955; Tabachovitz; Ruijgh}23 do not have a theoretical substructure. They limit themselves to the prototypical construction that expresses if-then-sequences in Greek (eVeav) and at best mention other possibilities of expressing conditional relations and other semantic values expressed by the eVeav-clauses. 24 As for the description of the conditional et-clause the above-mentioned studies take the morpho-syntactic form of the conditional as a starting-point: the morpho-syntactic form, especially the mood chosen in the ei-clause, is said to be essential in determining the semantic value of the conditional period as a whole; the description is thus based on the idea that there is a correlation between the (morpho-syntactic) form and the meaning of conditionals. There are, of course, minor differences in terminology and in the semantic values attributed to the different ei-clauses, but, all in all, the

23. Cf. Chantraine (274-84); Goodwin (137-95);Humbert (219-25);KG (2,463-88);Monro (265-7, 284-6, 290-1); Ruijgh (280-2;SD 682-8); Stahl (376-444). 24. Cf. Chantraine (245-6, 248, 319-25);Goodwin (173-5, 197-216);Humbert (241-3); KG (2,425-9, 483, 488-90); Monro (258-60,278-9); SD (387-8, 683, 688); Stahl (414-8, 427-31, 531-3, 682-3).

36

STATE OF RESEARCH

description of the grammars may be summarized as follows (see also my sketch in eh. 1.2): ei with indicative: there is no indication as to the (chance oO fulfilment of the condition. This type is sometimes called 'realis', which is misleading since the term 'realis' might suggest that the ei-clause concerns reality. A better term is 'neutral condition'. ei with avand subjunctive: a) (main clause marked by a tense with future reference): fulfilment of the condition is plausible/expected/anticipated. b) (with present indicative in the main clause): the conditional expresses a repeated or generic event/action. ei with optative: fulfilment of the condition is thought possible, but exists only in the imagination. ei with secondary indicative (and secondary indicative with avin the main clause): fulfilment of the condition is not possible. Non-fulfilment is presupposed (counterfactual conditional). All in all, then, the mood chosen (the 'form') is thought to be the factor par excellence for the description of the 'meaning' of the conditional (formmeaning correlation). The choice of the mood is determined in its tum by the speaker, and depends on the view he has concerning the fulfilment of the condition. This choice does not, of course, necessarily correspond to the chances of fulfilment in the real world. Most recent studies adopt this kind of form-meaning based description and are mainly concerned with making some further refinements (Brunel 1980; Greenberg 1986; Rijksbaron 1980, 1986). In this study I will likewise adopt a form-meaning based method of description; however, I will argue that apart from the mood chosen there are at least three other factors which seem relevant to an adequate description: the level of the main clause to which the if-clause is attached, the time ref erred to in the subordinate clause, and the type of discourse (cf. eh. 3.3). Only a few recent studies show an interest in theoretical questions as well: Rijksbaron (1986); Houben (1976) (both accepting the above sketched traditional form-meaning based kind of description) and Bakker (1988a) (rejecting the traditional view). Rijksbaron (1986) elaborately discusses the sentence-initial position of (Dutch and Greek) conditionals within the framework of FG. I will discuss his ideas in some detail in eh. 3.2. In a transformational framework Greek conditionals have been studied as well,

CoNDmONALS IN ANCIENT GREEK

37

e.g. in Houben (1976). Because Houben's study exhibits a number of peculiarities I will discuss it here at some length. There are two essential points in Houben's study with which I wholly agree. First, he tries to show that even in the oldest extant Greek literature (i.e. Homer) conditional £i-clauses are subordinate clauses (as against the view that £i-clauses prehistorically were paratactic main clauses, and that this may still be seen in some types of Homeric £i-clauses; see eh. 8.4 below). He subscribes to contemporary theories that consider the process of subordination as a) a device for sentence expansion in all languages and b) an operational fact pertaining to sentence-structure levels (Houben 1976: 2). Second, within this framework he suggests a disjunctive deep structure for Ancient Greek conditionals. 25 The idea of considering a conditional a (potential) disjunction will tum out to be very fruitful (cf. Lehmann 1977; see also eh. 8.4-8.6, where I suggest a kindred hypothesis). However, although I agree with these two general theoretical ideas about conditionals, I have my doubts about the validity of Houben's description of conditionals in Attic and in Homer (Houben 1976: eh. II and ill). As is done in most studies that take as a starting-point for their description the idea that form and meaning of conditionals are interrelated, Houben divides the conditionals into several groups with each a different form and meaning. Although the factors he uses to make his divisions (mood, time referred to in the subordinate clause) seem relevant, I think his description as a whole is far from satisfactory: his method of describing and comparing Attic and Homeric Greek seems so inconsistent that his conclusions are, in my opinion, wholly unwarranted. First, starting with Attic Greek, he says that he describes only simple conditionals, not mixed ones (i.e. combinations of a protasis of one conditional sentence type plus the apodosis of another type).

25. He does so on the basis of the - comparable - surface marking (use of negation, modals, pronominals, etc.) of conditionals and prototypical disjunctive clauses with it ('or'), and the (semantic) interchangeability of d (conditional 'if) and ii (disjunctive 'or') (Houben 1976: eh. IV). To support his view be adduces the logical equivalence p > q • -p v q (cf. however also my note 9 above). The deep structure he suggests is said to be universal. He furthermore introduces language specific transformational rules that are responsible for the subordination of the protases and for their surface markings. As already said_(eh. 1.3) a TG framework does not seem very fruitful for a study giving a description of language use. (f o be fair, this is not Houben's principal aim; I will, therefore, not pronounce a judgement about the relevance of a TG framework for his aim). For some criticism on Houben's ideas, see also Pino Campos (1992).

38

STATE OF RESEARCH

As parameters he uses the moods used in the subordinate and main clauses, the time referred to, and (un)reality.26 The choice of the mood in the ifclause is said to be essential to determine the semantic value of the conditional as a whole. Houben subsequently describes the whole Homeric corpus and compares it with the Attic scheme. His conclusion is, first, that the Homeric conditional does not fit into the scheme for Attic Greek because there are too many mixed conditionals (which, however, he excluded from his description of Attic Greek!) and, second, that mood alternation in Homer is purely a syntactic-metrical phenomenon, and not a signal of differing degrees of likelihood of realization, unlike in Attic Greek. Because he compares incongruous corpora (the whole Homeric corpus vs. only simple conditionals in Attic Greek) his conclusions seem unwarranted, and I will, therefore, not take his description further into consideration.

26. Houben's scheme for Attic Greek runs as follows:

I. non-unreal 1. contemporary: if X is, then Y is: el + pr.ind., pr.ind. 2. previous: if X was, then Y was: el + ind. Il, ind. II 3. subsequent: if X will be, then Y will be: el + fut.ind., fut.ind. II. half-unreal 4. contemporary: if ever X be, then Y is: tav + subj., pr.ind. 5. previous: if ever X were, then Y was: el + opt., ind. Il 6. subsequent: if ever X be, then Y will be: iav + subj., fut.ind. III. unreal 7. contemporary: if X were, then Y would be: Ei + ind. II, ind. Il + 8. previous: if X had been, then Y would have been: Ei + aor.ind., aor.ind. + 9. subsequent: if X should be, then Y would be: el + opt., opt + Without going into details I advance the following points of criticism: - Toe scheme seems not apt to describe the Attic conditional, because mixed conditionals (i.e. a mixture of moods, e.g. el + ind., opt + el + opt, pr./futind; et + opt, ind. Il + El + ind. II, opt. + or a mixture of tenses, e.g. 'if he did this yesterday, he will do it again tomorrow') constitute a large part of Attic conditionals. is unreal. In terms of reality I should - I fail to see the reason why El + opt, opt. + rather prefer the term half-unreal: this conditional type expresses a potential conditional and potentiality implies that at the moment of speaking the SoA involved is not realized, but that realization is presented as possible. - Group II seems to consist of heterogeneous types. Houben nowhere satisfactorily explains the similarities between 4-5 at the one hand and 6 at the other (he only says that they are all marked by a non-indicative mood in the if-clause and translates them all by 'if ever'). In my terms 4 and 5 express iteration, 6 likelihood of fulfilment of the condition. They cannot be grouped together without comment. Toe characterii.ation 'half-unreal' seems, moreover, doubtful in the case of 6. See further eh. 4.

av

av

av,

av;

av

av

av;

CoNDmONALS IN ANCIENT GREEK

39

A view which is at variance with all studies mentioned above is proposed by Balcker (1988a). He rejects the widely-accepted view about the semantic value of the moods in conditional clauses. He mentions two difficulties in the current descriptions which make, in his opinion, the traditional view unacceptable: 1. the fact that ecxv has been split up in two "disparate and heterogeneous parts" (1988a: 6), i.e. into futural e&v which expresses anticipation as to the fulfilment of the condition; and distributive-iterative ecxv, which expresses iteration; 2. the question of how to differentiate between e&v with subjunctive and £i with - especially future - indicative. The current opinion (cf. eh. 1.2 and 4.4), namely that in the case of the indicative the speaker does not convey anything about the probability of fulfilment of the condition, whereas in the case of e&v the speaker presents fulfilment as likely, is, in his opinion, unwarranted and circular, because it is crucially based on the interpretation of 'representative' instances, the characteristics of which thereupon get the status of a theory and are used as criteria to explain other instances (Bakker 1988a: 6-7). To start with the latter point, I do not believe that this point of criticism is justified. Thus, to mention only one thing, the relevance of a semantic difference between e&v with subjunctive and ei with indicative can, in fact, be proved: adverbs like CXAT18roc; ('really', 'in truth') occur with the indicative (see eh. 1.2, n.12), but not with the subjunctive with av.From this fact we may infer that there is a semantic difference and in particular that the indicative does, indeed, indicate that the speaker does not commit himself to the likelihood of fulfilment of the condition. Moreover, I do not think Balcker's criticism that the existing descriptions are circular is justified either. Even if the characteristics of some instances are promoted to the status of a theory, what objections can be made if it can be proved that all instances have the same characteristics? I believe that such a proof can be found in recent studies like Ruijgh (1971) and Rijksbaron (1980, 1986) and usually also in older handbooks.27

27. Sometimes objections may, however, be raised on minor points. Thus it is often suggested that Ei with future indicative has a minatory (or warning) value on the basis of instances like Ei tama At;e1.;,ex()apftµeve; eµou ('if you say that, you will be hated by me', S. Ant. 93). The minatory value of the future indicative only results from the context in question (fulfilment of the condition is not hoped for by the speaker; the apodosis refers to

40

STATE OF RESEARCH

As to Bakker's own solution, it may be criticized on several points. In

summary his argumentation is the following. Bakker first argues (Bakker 1988a: 8-11) that at the syntactic level a distinction must be made between 'embedded' vs. 'non-embedded' subordination. He illustrates this claim with the following example: (10) If linguists hate formalism they love empiricism (10) is said to have two different readings. On the first reading, an implicative relationship is said to be expressed between two generic sentences (linguists hate formalism; linguists love empiricism), which are in themselves complete and convey information of their own. On the second reading (paraphrasable as 'linguists who hate formalism love empiricism'), "the main clause and the conditional clause together form a complete generic statement. In isolation they are not complete" (Bakker 1988a: 10). In the latter case embedded subordination is involved: "the subordinate, conditional, clause has a function within the main clause" (ibidem). The main clause is not complete without the addition of the conditional clause. Next Bakker (1988a: 11-3), wrongly, as I hope to show, links the notion of embeddedness to e&v with subjunctive and of non-embeddednessto ei with indicative (or optative or secondary indicative with counterfactual value). He does so by means of the semantic notion of completeness.28 His argumentation is as follows. The main clauses of eciv always have a generic or habitual or a future predicate, i.e. a non-fact modality. To create a complete reference to a specific, existing, factual SoA the subordinate clause is, therefore, needed. Consequently, such eciv-clauses are embedded subordinate clauses. Main clauses of ei with indicative, on the other hand, have completed reference; the ei-clause, therefore, is non-embedded. My main objections run as follows: 1. In passages in which both ei with future indicative and eav with subjunctive occur I fail to see on the basis of which criteria a distinction can be made (in (11)) between the presumed completeness of 'tt mpeac;a1tatpftaeat

something undesirable or unpleasant for the addressee). It is, therefore, unwarranted to use this example to prove that such a 'minatory value' is the semantic value of the future indicative in general or that it cannot be expressed by other moods. See further eh. 4.4. 28. A proposition is called complete if it bas completed reference to a (specific, existing, factual) SoA and does not need additional information to refer to this (specific, existing, factual) SoA. See Bakker (1988a: 15-23).

CONDITIONALSIN ANCIENT GREEK

41

and the incompleteness of oaa aya0a a1to~aA-eet~or, to put it differently, and the embeddedbetween the presumed non-embeddedness of ei VtKTtCJEt~ ness of ftv vi1cr10ft~: (11)

·tou'to µh, 6ti, ei VtKTtCJEt~, 'tt mpea~ a1tatptiaeat, 'toia{ ye µ11 emt µ116ev;'tOU'tO6e, 11vvi1cr10ft~.µ, chc;ElCElVTt pooA.etm

POSITION AND FUNCTION OF CONDmONALS

51

2. The principle of what might be called argumentativeiconicity: argumentation progresses step by step. Participants must gain common ground before going on. In this process of gaining common ground, conditionals indicate which of the possibilities involved in the, in principle, disjunctive situation is taken into consideration. It is only after this has been established that the argumentation (found in the main clause) can proceed (Lehmann 1974). 3. Conditionals often present given information. As a rule given information precedes new information (Haiman 1980: 528; 1983a). 4. (related to 3) Conditionals often resume information provided by the preceding context (anaphoric relation). As such they prefer initial position. 5. From crosslinguistic research it appears that, in conditionals with a nonfactual value, it is usually the if-clause that is overtly marked as non-factual, not the main clause. The placing of the if-clause in front of the unmarked main clause prevents the main clause from receiving a factual interpretation (cf. Comrie 1986: 84-5).13 6. Many languages have paratactic sequences with a conditional value, e.g. 'Do that and I'll punish you', cf. oµucpov ACX~£ mxpa6eiyµcx, x:cxi1t«xvtcx e1c:rn& ~ouAoµcxt ('take a small example, and you'll know all the ones I want', Pl. 1ht. 154cl-2), cf. KG (1,236-7). Wishes followed by a clause which expresses the consequences of the fulfilment of the wish may also be interpreted as having a conditional value, cf. outro vuv Zru; 8eill ...· I tq> ('May Zeus bring that; then also there 1eevtot x:cxix:ei0t 0eq>~ ~UXEtocpµTtV I will pray to you as to a god,' Od. 15.180-1). In such cases the 'conditional' clause always precedes the consequent. It is sometimes inferred that this

(.'Well, my notion was that we ought to follow nature to the utmost and to link together the parts of speech [i.e. the words] according to her promptings', D.H. Comp. 5.5-6); cf. also 1C(X1 -c6a£tpµ'llVa£iv µ11 1tap!pycoc; q>\)A o (45) 6ox:ei 6e f3ouA.e-ueo8at, O'tta6tKOUOtV; - emro, Eq>TI. - 1tO't£pov,f\V6' eyro, ei ei>1tpA£'Y'OV'tOA£'Y'OV'tOA£'Y'OV'toµ&c;..., 8eooc;av6i6aoicoiµi µTIi\yeto8m i>µ&c; etvm ('surely/it is obvious that if I tried to persuade you, I should be teaching you to believe that there are no gods', Pl. Ap. 35d2-4). Here the propositional (attitudinal) adverb oacp&c; and the modal particle avseem by their very position to dominate both subordinate and main clause, thus making it possible for the et-clause to be analysed as restrictive and intra-clausal. However, the et-clause may also be considered an extra-clausal one interrupting the (intonation flow of the) main clause. There are only few examples of the latter kind.

POSITION AND FUNCTION OF CONDIDONALS

79

perspective. 61 Perhaps one may attribute such ei-clauses a Delayed Theme · 62 e.g. function, (51) "f\lCOO£'t(xt yap, iiv1tep ion,'tou 'tOV~crtPl>XOV('for she will recognize, if she sees it, the lock of her brother's hair', Ar. Nu. 536) 63 (52) 1tpotTtv).In between the Theme and the d-clause an Address is parenthetically inserted. The whole complex of Theme and d-clause functions itself as a Theme with regard to the main clause oi>xl6t1ea{avEX£t1:i1eµapowto tKcpo~aat, and it is an exceptional Theme, in that it is interrupted by the parenthetical Address. 76. Dile (1990: 237-8) mentions only four possible positions. He does not discuss conditionals in parenthetical position.

POSITION AND FUNCTION OF CONDITIONALS

83

positions. To show in which positions conditionals occur, the schema presented in ( 10) above should be modified as follows: (61) P2, [Pl ... ,(P0 ),

...

X], P3

This schema differs from (10) in two respects. First, P0 is introduced to symbolize the various positions a parenthetical conditional may take, the brackets and commas indicating that this position falls outside the clause proper. Second, ...X is used to symbolize the final position in the clause proper. The if-clause may, first of all, be placed inside the clause proper as an essential component (restrictive conditional); in that case it is either in Pl or in final position of the clause proper (X). When placed in Pl the if.,clause has either Focus-function (e.g. 'On what condition will Peter leave? :: If John comes (Peter will leave)', cf. (29)-(33)) or Topic function (e.g. 'If John comes, that is terrible', cf. (36)-(37)); when placed in position X in the clause proper the if-clause is focal in that it provides completive, restricting or selecting information ((43)-(46), (32)) or in that it specifies some pronominal constituent in the main clause the referent of which is not inferrable from the preceding context/situation (47)-(48). In addition, the if-clause is sometimes topical in that the SoA designated by the if-clause is evaluated by the main clause (49). Second, the if-clause may not belong to the clause proper (non-restrictive conditional); it may occur in pre-clausal (P2) or post-clausal (P3) position or in Pn interrupting the clause proper (n indicates that its position may vary). When placed in P2 the if-clause has Theme-like features: it specifies the framework within which the following clause must be interpreted (e.g. 'If John comes, will Peter leave?', cf. (11)-(16), (21)-(27)). Since if-clauses point to disjunctive situations these Theme-like if-clauses may be characterized as Provisional Themes, because unlike nominal Themes they do not present a factual entity, but a possible world as the framework for the following clause. When placed in P3 the if-clause has Tail function and presents - as an afterthought - information meant to clarify or modify (some constituent in) the main clause (e.g.'In that case Peter will leave, if John comes, I mean', cf. (38)-(42)). When they are parenthetical, finally, the ifclause interrupts the main clause to add the framework within which the cooccurring clause must be interpreted (e.g. 'Will Peter, if John comes, leave the house?', cf. (51)-(54), (56)).

84

THEORETICALPRELIMINARIES

The picture sketched above of the positions and functions of predicational conditionals is for the greater part in accordance with the conclusions of a number of articles that deal with the discourse function of preposed and postposed predicational adverbial clauses in other languages (Chafe 1984; Thompson 1984; Marchese 1987; Ramsay 1987). Their conclusions may be roughly summarized as follows. Preposed conditionals (Marchese, Ramsay), purpose clauses (Thompson) and adverbial clauses in general (Chafe) are thematically linked to both the preceding discourse and to the main clause. They present a framework within which the following information is to be understood, i.e. within which the occurrence of the SoA designated by the main clause must be placed. Postposed conditionals etc., on the other hand, present an addition to the assertion in the main clause or modify part of what was stated there. They are thus linked to the main clause only. I fully agree with this description, but only on the understanding that it is not complete. The characteristics mentioned seem to hold true only for extraclausal preposed and postposed conditionals. The studies in question seem to ignore three categories of conditional (discussed above): 1. restrictive preposed conditionals with Topic or Focus function; 2. restrictive postposed conditionals; 3. internal conditionals ('Delayed Themes').

3.2.5 Propositionaland illocutionaryconditionals As argued in eh. 3.2.3, propositional ((65)) and illocutionary conditionals

((62)-(64)) are inherently non-restrictive and, consequently, extra-clausal. Therefore, in considering the question of their position with regard to the main clause, they may be dealt with together, cf. the following examples:77 (62) eav 6e (3ouAneic; 0ettw..iav ievat, eialv eµol e1eei~evot o'i ae 1tepl 1t0Mou 1tot11aovtat ('and if you wish to go to Thessaly, I have friends there who will make much of you', Pl. Cri. 45c2-3) (63) o 6e O'Cpayeuc; tic;;ei tci.6' iatopeiv µe XP'll('and who will be my slaughterer, if I may ask this', E. IT 623) eµol 0avatou µh µ0..et, £i µn cxypotKot£povnv (64) eve6£t;6£lc;6e 8v11trovtaic; tuxaic; vrivocplp ([I pray that] 'if/though through Hellas I bear evil fame, may I [= my body] here take no stain of shame', E. Hel. 66-7). The 'causal' or 'concessive meaning' of d, however, is due to the context and is not part of the meaning of

Ei.

130

PREDICATIONAL CONDITIONALS

interpretation ranges somewhere between (nearly)-causal and (nearly)counterfactual. The interpretation may be guided by attitudinal modifiers.16

4.2.2 e1ee{etc. with present indicative17 One could call e1ee{with present indicative the presuppositional counterpart of (resumptive) ei with present indicative: like d, e1td takes up information presented earlier or supposed to be otherwise known; unlike ei, however, this piece of information is always presupposed, i.e. presented as taken for granted. It can therefore serve as a basis for the main predication: 'I consider a certain SoA p that we both know to be an established fact. Now that/ Given/Since p, q' .18 In contrast to £i with present indicative, by using e1tei the speaker explicitly takes responsibility for the truth of the information presented. These e1eei-clausesare not strictly temporal. It is not so much 'the moment at which' that is involved here; rather, such clauses express the circumstances under which the SoA expressed in the main clause takes place. As such they usually have a causal nuance.19 Rijksbaron (1976) neatly calls them inferential (defined as "leading to an inference", ibid. 180n30): on the 16. E.g. nearly-causal et yap&I\o Aiyroomros EX£t- EX£taeµaii.tota. 1tClV'tCOV outros -, ... 'For if what I say is the case - and it is supremely true -•, Pl. Prt. 327a2). The if-clause is used for the sake of the argument ('suppose that'), whereas the speaker makes his own opinion clear by adding a parenthesis. For the use of if-clauses in situations where e.g. 'since' seems apt, see eh. 4.5.2. 17. 'Ent:to,\, endtt: (Ionic), ott:, on6te, itv{x:a.and roe; (seldom) can also be used in this way. 18. Note that of these English translations since and given seem to be used in all situations in which btd is found, whereas the use of now that is restricted. 'End may be used when reference is involved to the words of the interlocutor, to the situation at the speech moment or to some general knowledge. For English sinceand given (just as for Dutch aangezien)the same seems to be true, whereas now that (just as Dutch nu) cannot be used in the latter case, cf. - 'now that/since (as you say/ the situation shows) p, q' - 'since (as is a general observation) p, q' - *'now that (as is a general observation) p, q' Now that and nu, then, only occur when there is reference to the speech moment (in the wide sense) of speaker and bearer, whereas since and aangezienare used - just like end and the like - in all these cases. For further observations on the semantics of since and now that, see Rijksbaron (1976: 47-64). 19. In some contexts they may also have a concessive nuance, e.g. 'When it rained, you wanted to go out for a walk. Now that the sun is shining, you are staying home'. The context determines which nuance is expressed.

INrERACTIVE SPEECH: PRESENT REFERENCE

131

basis of the SoA designated in the £1t£i-clausethe speaker infers that this SoA will be or ought to be followed by the SoA designated in the main clause. The main clause often has an imperative, but it may have any other mood with non-past tense, cf. 1CIX1&6iacp8op6v£CJ'ttV, aUo n 'V'>XTl ft, £i (21) 07tO't£6n 'tO &8av«x'tOV &0avcx'tooto; fon, ... · d 6e µ,\, ...). Potential and counterfactual conditionals can only figure in oppositions if they are not primarily used to point to a contrast with a factual SoA, but if, instead, several possibilities are contrasted (which are all in contrast with the factual situation) (e.g. Pl. Pit. 300d9-el; Cra. 423al.3.4.) 31. Cf. Wakker(1986b).

µev

136

PREDICATIONALCONDITIONALS

drastic than simply allowing for a possibility (potential conditional) (cf. Brunel 1980: 235). This semantic-pragmatic character of counterfactuals determines to a high extent the contexts in which they typically occur. First, there are contexts which require the explicit expression of the impossibility of realization, cf. A below. In such contexts potential conditionals are not found. Second, there are contexts in which a speaker exploits, for rhetorical reasons, the fact that a counterfactual involves a more drastic assessment of reality than other conditional types (see B). As I hope to show, identical as the contexts of (24)-(27) may seem, the contexts of (24)-(25) may be categorized as groups A and B, whereas those of (26)-(27) cannot. A. Contexts in which only counterfactuals can occur: Al. Contexts in which the factual situation appears to be not only the opposite of the condition, but also of such a nature that it cannot change any more, cf.

'te ecxc;xp11µci'troV l((X\ cxicrxpo1eep6ftc;, OUK&v ve1ep&v (29) Ei µit