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573. Optative appears to have

The optative appears to have as its primary office the expression of wish or desire; in the oldest language, its prevailing use in independent clauses is that to which the name "optative" properly belongs.

a. But the expression of desire, on the one hand, passes naturally over into that of request or entreaty, so that the optative becomes a softened imperative; and, on the other hand, it comes to signify what is generally desirable or proper, what should or ought to be, and so becomes the mode of prescription; or, yet again, it is weakened into signifying what may or can be, what is likely or usual, and so becomes at last a softened statement of what is.

b. Further, the optative in dependent clauses, with relative pronouns and conjunctions, becomes a regular means of expression of the conditional and contingent, in a wide and increasing variety of uses.

c. The so-called precative forms (567) are ordinarily used in the proper optative sense. But in the later language they are occasionally met with in the other uses of the optative: thus, na hi prapaçyāmi mamā ’panudyād yac chokam (Bh G.) for I do not perceive what should dispel my grief; yad bhūyāsur vibhūtayaḥ (BhP.)that there should be changes. Also rarely with : see 579 b.