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Subjunctive mood

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Subjunctive mood engleski
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The lesson that I wanted to get into today was about the subjunctive again and let’s go to the blog that I wrote and we will kind of go over this now this is something okay this is kind of unscheduled because I actually just recently wrote this blog and I thought it would be interesting for us to do it because the subjunctive mood is not normally taught and especially it’s not taught for English as a foreign language it is one of these subjects that is kind of foregone and why because it’s not as commonly used in today’s speech in today’s common tongue and for the reason it it does resemble a more formal type of English the subjunctive mood however is used indirectly with a lot of well with one thing at least that we’ve already drilled with over and over again and that is when we’re talking about hypotheticals now the subjunctive has many forms okay and one of these forms which we have already talked about is dealing with hypotheticals specifically if I were okay you remember and this is usually it pertains to second conditional when we’re talking about this but if you’ve ever asked yourself or me the reason why we use were this is part of subjunctive mood and it clearly indicates it’s clearly indicative of a hypothetical situation that’s why we like to use were instead of was for a present hypothetical because it differentiates reality from unreality okay so that’s one facet of the subjunctive which we have already learned but you actually didn’t know that we were learning this so we will talk about that a little later on because we’ve probably already pretty familiar with it and you are actually pretty good with your conditionals congratulations so that’s number one now number two really that will focus more on today is something that you’ve probably never I’m sure that you’ve never heard of before this is more dealing with the Mandative subjunctive and the Mandative subjunctive well if something first okay if something is mandated okay let me get my I just have to go to the big one (whiteboard) okay so mandative is an adjective but to mandate now this type of subjunctive that again we’re covering is called the mandated subjunctive there are other forms of subjunctive but this is a common well more common form and the name of it kind of gives or foretells what or how we use it um mandate okay an official command okay this is very important because the subjunctive this type of learning is very similar to an imperative which you are familiar with ‘daj mi’ (Croatian for give me) right this sort of thing it is a command essentially so that’s kind of the background gives us a little bit of information of what we’re dealing with okay now um that being said let’s get back into the form okay now listen very closely to what I’m about to say I’m going to give you an example sentence okay all right now do I have your ears okay all right I know it’s early but I think we can we can push through this man all right all right so listen to the sentence it is important that you do your homework okay let me write this all right I’ll tract it’s important that you do your I’ll abbreviate oh well okay homework okay now does anything look strange about this this is not this can be a trick question because I’ll help nothing really looks strange about this right it looks kind of like a normal sentence okay we have an adjective here have another clause here that that Clause that you do your homework yeah it looks it looks normal right does it yeah okay all right now let me change something okay let me let me scratch out you and let me put let me put Jamie okay now read that since it’s for me please hmm I have to change this possessive yes I have to change the possess yes yes okay it’s important that Jamey know well don’t change the the sentence read it as it is written yeah okay Bravo now does that or do you see anything that looks rather odd about this yeah the verb do okay yeah that’s strange isn’t it? is this correct first of all? well that’s not what subjunctive states okay and now we are treading in the waters of mandative subjunctive here or just let’s call it subjunctive mood okay this is a very interesting form here now this verb in green or this infinitive actually is nothing is wrong with it this is this is fine this is how we use this form of subjunctive okay now often time you know many times many times people will use this form of subjunctive however it is cloaked or it is masked or that means that you can’t really see it because of the subjects we use we use maybe a plural subject like you or they or we right and the infinitive the natural the bare infinitive seems to have agreement with this okay it’s important we do our homework okay so this looks normal this actually looks like it’s present simple right however it is really not okay so it is really not present simple it is really a bare infinitive now it really stands out when we changed this subject to a third person singular like Jamey or he or she okay her it really stands out in this case now you may ask yourself and and you may ask me what’s the point of this is that a question that you might have conjured up we should invent something correctly to do it correctly okay we are correct we do things correctly yes now this subjunctive in this form it is not as commonly used today and especially in British English instead of this subjunctive you will often find the use of should do okay they substitute should many in many cases instead of this present subjunctive form okay but however this is a very nice form it is a…. I would say a formal form it’s a very refined way of speaking it’s a very polished way of speaking it sounds nice I think it’s music to the ears that’s just me I’m kind of a weirdo when it comes to this however we often use this subjunctive in phrases for example um we use subjunctive with phrases like may the force be with you right have you heard of that may the force be with you that’s kind of a that’s kind of you know a pretty big movie quote right may the force be with you right what about god bless you god save the king okay god sitter the queen okay all of these are actually subjunctive forms um be that as it may that’s another one but okay we do use this form often okay well no excuse me we don’t use it often we use the hypothetical subjunctive or the the subjunctive with were more often but what this does mr. D mr. mr. Dom (student) okay this places emphasis importance it stresses the necessity the the pure essence of something it again is very synonymous with an imperative form okay and as a matter of fact an imperative form also uses this bare infinitive do okay so you can think of it very closely to an imperative alright now let’s go to the are you following me are you still here have you got your coffee alright okay all right your your you’re following me very closely yes yes yes remember about our adjectives and adverbs okay if you’re listening okay never mind that’s that’s another subject okay okay um now we have already covered the base form of this type of subjunctive um it’s essentially the verb be excuse me the the infinitive without to of the verb okay it’s as simple as that as you can see in this chart and we have three verbs we have be having – okay the subjunctive does not change at all it stays the exact same for every form subject singular plural first person second person does it matter it stays the same so that’s the easy thing right that’s the very easy thing it’s it’s actually a pretty easy form to to implement because it’s just the bare infinitive okay did you notice okay let me click on this read that for me yes so okay that means that oops I’m lost okay yeah here we were okay here okay we have we have future we have present we have present we have past okay it doesn’t matter okay the subjunctive functions independently of time has nothing to do with the tense or time we use we keep it’s always the infinitive and that’s that’s that um it is an infinitive it’s it’s like any other infinitive you can think of even infinitives with – I want you to do I wanted you to do I will want you to do So it’s the same premise, it’s the same concept


The subjunctive mood in English is a very unique and relatively rare verb form that expresses something desired or imagined.

It is a subject that is often overlooked or even skipped, resulting in its misuse or total avoidance.  We can consider the subjunctive a bit inconspicuous; it appears subtly in phrases and indirectly over conditional subjects such as unreal conditional types.  

Using the subjunctive efficiently can provide a great variation in our language and can lead to better-refined speech and writing; it is like icing on the cake! 

We use the subjunctive mainly when talking about events that are not certain to happen. For example, we use the subjunctive when talking about events that somebody:

Base Subjunctive

Form of base subjunctive

Forming the base subjunctive is very simple – it is simply the basic infinitive without ‘to’. For example: be, have, do, go, sing, work. The base subjunctive does not use any other forms (goes, sings, works). This table shows the base subjunctive in all persons, using the verbs be, work and sing as examples:
be have do
I be have do
you be have do
he, she, it be have do
we be have do
you be have do
they be have do

Use of base subjunctive

In certain that clauses

The base subjunctive is typically used in that clauses after two structures:

suggest –
verb / noun + that

suggest, advise, ask, command, demand, desire, insist, order, prefer, propose, recommend, request

suggestion, command, demand, order, proposal, recommendation, request

2. advisable / anxious – adjective + that
advisable, best, crucial, desirable, essential, imperative, important, necessary, unthinkable, urgent, vital

anxious, adamant, determined, eager, keen

Look at these sentences which include examples of the above:

main clause suggest-verb that clause with subjunctive
He will suggest (future) that you be present during the call.
The board recommend (present) that she join the firm.
He requested (past) that the motorcycle not be parked in front.
main clause suggest-noun that clause with subjunctive
She made (past) a suggestion that we arrive earlier.
He made (past) a proposal that the company buy more land.
The CEO has issued (present perfect) an order that the secretary resign next month.
main clause advisable-adjective that clause with subjunctive
It is (present) advisable that he take off for a week.
It was (past) essential that the forces make an advancement.
It will be (future) vital that every soldier not use a radio.
main clause anxious-adjective that clause with subjunctive
Tara is anxious that you return soon.
They are keen that he not be hurt.
We were determined that it remain secret.


That subjunctives function outside (independently) of time. The three examples above use all past, present, and future tenses; yet, the subjunctive remains unchanged.

More examples including that clauses in negative and continuous forms:

  1. Have you seen my suggestion that our work hours be reduced?
  2. The judge ordered that he stay the execution.
  3. I’ve requested that I not be disturbed.
  4. It is important that a taxi be waiting when we arrive.
  5. The manager was eager that his visitor see the new attraction.
  6. The board recommended that he not be reprimanded.

be after if

We sometimes use subjunctive be after if/whether, though this is rather formal, especially in British English:

If thatbe(not)the case,I intend to report the matter.
Whether hebe prepared or not,

If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.William Shakespeare

Fixed expressions

Note the following fixed expressions with the subjunctive:

  • Bless you!
  • God bless America!
  • God save the Queen.
  • Long live the President!
  • Heaven forbid!
  • Heaven help us!
  • Peace be with you.

were – Subjunctive

Form of were-subjunctive

 were – subjunctive
he, she, itwere
Note that the subjunctive does not change according to person (I, you, he etc).

Use of were – subjunctive

In the following examples, you can see that we sometimes use the were-subjunctive (instead of was) after:

  • if
  • as if
  • wish
  • suppose

Note that in these cases were is always correct, but was is possible in informal language:

Formal with wereInformal with was
I would go if I were younger.I would go if I was younger.
If he were not so mean, he would buy one.If he wasn’t so mean, he would buy one.
I’d tell her if I were you.We do not normally say “if I was you” even in colloquial language.
It’s not as if I were ugly.It’s not as if I was ugly.
She acts as if she were the Queen.She acts as if she was the Queen.
wish I weren’t so slow!I wish I wasn’t so slow!
wish the computer were working.I wish the computer was working.
Suppose she were here. What would you say?Suppose she was here. What would you say?

Wish you were here -Pink Floyd

If I Were a Rich Man   –Fiddler on the Roof

If I were a boy   –Beyoncé


May you put your skills to the test!