Mood
A. The Indicative Mood
1. Declarative Indicative
2. Interrogative Indicative
3. Conditional Indicative
4. Potential Indicative
5. Cohortative (Command, Volitive) Indicative
B. The Subjunctive Mood
1. Hortatory (Volitive) Subjunctive
2. Deliberative (Dubitative) Subjunctive
3. Emphatic Negation Subjunctive
4. Prophibitive Subjunctive
5. Subjuncitive in Conditional Sentences
6. "Ina" + the Subjunctive
7. Subjunctive with Verbs of Fearing, etc.
8. Subjunctive in Indirect Questions
9. Subjunctive in Indefinite Relative Clause
10. Subjunctive in Indefinite Temporal Clause
C. The Optative Mood
1. Voluntative Optative (Obtainable Wish)
2. Potential Optative
D. The Imperative Mood
1. Command
2. Prohibition
3. Request (Entreaty, Polite Command)
4. Permissive Imperative (Imperative of Tolerance)
5. As a Stereotyped Greeting


In general, mood is the feature of the verb that presents the verbal action or state with reference to its actuality or potentiality. Voice indicates how the subject relates to the action or state of the verb; tense is used primarily to portray the kind of action. There are four moods in Greek: indicative, subjunctive, optative, and imperative. See further qualifications in Wallace.

A. The Indicative Mood

The indicative mood is, in general, the mood of assertion, or presentation of certainty. It is not correct to say that it is the mood of certainty or reality. This belongs to the presentation (i.e., the indicative may present something as being certain or real, though the speaker might not believe it).

1. Declarative Indicative

2. Interrogative Indicative

3. Conditional Indicative

4. Potential Indicative

5. Cohortative (Command, Volitive) Indicative


B. The Subjunctive Mood

The subjunctive is the most common of the oblique moods in the N.T. In general, the subjunctive can be said to represent the verbal action (or state) as uncertain but probable. It is not correct to call this the mood of uncertainty because the optative also presents the verb as uncertain. Rather, it is better to call it the mood of probability so as to distinguish it from the optative. Still, this is an overly simplistic definition in light of its usage in the NT.

[Wallace breaks the discussion down into the use of the subjunctive in independent (categories 1-4) and dependent (categories 5-10) clauses.]

1. Hortatory (Volitive) Subjunctive [let us]

2. Deliberative (Dubitative) Subjunctive

3. Emphatic Negation Subjunctive

4. Prohibitive Subjunctive

5. Subjunctive in Conditional Sentences

6. Ina + the Subjunctive

7. Subjuctive with Verbs of Fearing, Etc.

8. Subjunctive in Indirect Questions

9. Subjunctive in Indefinite Relative Clause

10. Subjunctive in Indefinite Temporal Clause


C. The Optative Mood

There are less than 70 optatives in the entire NT. In general, it can be said that the optative is the mood used when a speaker wishes to portray an action as possible. It usually addresses cognition, but may be used to appeal to the volition. Along with the subjunctive and imperative, the optative is one of potential or oblique moods.

1. Voluntative Optative (Optative of Obtainable Wish, Volitive Optative)

2. Potential Optative


D. The Imperative Mood

The imperative mood is the mood of intention. It is the mood furthest removed from certainty. Ontologically, as one of the potential or oblique moods, the imperative moves into the realm of volition (involving the imposition of one's will upon another) and possibility.

1. Command

2. Prohibition

3. Request (Entreaty, Polite Command)

4. Permissive Imperative (Imperative of Toleration)

5. As a Stereotyped Greeting


Edition: Feb 10,2009