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hellog〜英語史ブログ / 2018-12-13

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2018-12-13 Thu

#3517. if を使わずに V + S とする条件節 [syntax][word_order][conjunction][construction_grammar][conditional][subjunctive][inversion]

 現代英語には,条件節を表わすのに if を用いずに,主語と動詞の倒置で代用する構文がある.例文を挙げよう.

 ・ Were I to take over my father's business, I would make a drastic reform.
 ・ Had World War II ended two years earlier, how many lives would have been saved!
 ・ Should anything happen to him, call me at once.


 現代英語では,were, should, had で始まるものに限定されており,意味的にも反事実的条件に強く傾いているが,かつては疑問文の形成と同様に一般の動詞が前置されることもあったし,中立的条件にも用いられた.Leuschner and Nest (2) より,古英語や中英語からの例を挙げよう.

 ・ Fulga nu se mete ðære wambe willan, & sio wamb ðæs metes, ðonne towyrpð God ægðer. (YCOE: Cura Pastoralis, late 9th cent.)
   "If the food now follow.SUBJ the will of the belly and the belly that of the food, God annihilates both."
 ・ Do þu hit eanes awei; ne schalt tu neauer nan oðer swuch acourin. (PPCME2: Hali Meidhad, c. 1225)
   "If you get rid of it once, you will never (re)gain anything like it."
 ・ Deceyueth me the foxe / so haue I ylle lerned my casus (PPCME2: Caxton's History of Reynard the Fox, 1481)
   "If the fox deceives me, I have learned my lesson badly."


 最初の2つの例文において,前置されている動詞は接続法の形式である.
 なぜ条件節を表わすのに倒置が起こるのかという問題については,Jespersen (373--74) が「疑問文からの派生」説を紹介している.

A condition is very often denoted by a clause without any conjunction, but containing a verb placed before its subject. This construction, which is found in all the Gothonic language, is often explained from a question with implied positive answer: Will you come? [Yes, then] we can start at once.---A clear instance of this is AV 1. Cor. 7.27 Art thou bound vnto a wife? seeke not to bee loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seeke not a wife.


 しかし,Jespersen (374) は,「疑問文からの派生」説だけでは説明しきれないとも考えており,続けて「接続法としての用法」説の可能性にも言及している.

But interrogative sentences, though undoubtedly explaining much, are not the only sources of our construction. Pretty frequently we find a subjunctive used in such a way that it cannot have arisen from a question, but must be due to a main sentence expressing a desire, permission, or the like: AR 164 uor beo hit enes tobroken, ibet ne bið hit neuer | Towneley 171 Gett I those land lepars, I breke ilka bone | Sh Merch III. 2.61 Liue thou, I liue with much more dismay | Cymb IV. 3.30 come more, for more you're ready | John III. 3.31 and creep the time nere so slow, Yet it shall come, for me to doe these good.


 「疑問」「接続法」「願望」「条件」というキーワードが,何らかの形で互いに結びついていそうだという感覚がある.VS 条件節の発達は,最近取り上げてきた may 祈願の発達の問題にも光を投げかけてくれるかもしれない (cf. 「#3515. 現代英語の祈願文,2種」 [2018-12-11-1],「#3516. 仮定法祈願と may 祈願の同居」 ([2018-12-12-1])) .

 ・ Leuschner, Torsten and Daan Van den Nest. "Asynchronous Grammaticalization: V1-Conditionals in Present-Day English and German." Languages in Contrast 15 (2015): 34--63.
 ・ Jespersen, Otto. A Modern English Grammar on Historical Principles. Part 5. Copenhagen: Munksgaard, 1954.

Referrer (Inside): [2018-12-15-1] [2018-12-14-1]

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