Chapter 30

Chapter 30
Indirect Questions
Sequence of Tenses
Indirect Questions
Another subordinate use of the
 Reports what someone asks without
directly quoting that person.
 Similar to the concept of the Indirect
Statement with a Subjunctive verb instead
of an accusative-infinitive construction.
Indirect Questions
Identified by:
– a main verb of asking, telling, thinking
(similar to indirect statement)
– an interrogative word
– a subjunctive verb in the subordinate clause
– quis, quid / quī, quae, quod
– quam, quandō, cūr, ubi, unde, uter, utrum,
an, -ne
English Examples
Dad asked us where we were going today.
The class wondered what questions would
be on the next test.
The children debated whether Santa Claus
brought the presents or not.
Latin Examples
ille auctor narrābat nōbīs quantā cum cūrā
Rōmulus moenia urbis condidisset.
ōrātor repente rogāvit cūr cēterī cīvēs
ingenium huius virī nōn cognōvissent.
nesciō utrum vīvī an mortuī plūs honōris
crās acceptūrī sint.
Sequence of Tenses
This describes the way in which a
speaker/writer proceeds from the main
clause into a subordinate clause.
 So, in English one can’t say, “I was there
when he is here.” To be correct, one must
say, “I was there when he was here.”
 Because the main clause contains a past
tense verb the subordinate clause agrees
in its tense.
Latin Sequence Structure
Because subordination is often indicated
by the subjunctive mood in Latin, the
sequence of tenses begins with an
indicative verb (usually) and then contains
a subjunctive in the subordinate clause.
 There are two groupings in Latin sequence
of tenses: Primary and Secondary
Primary Sequence
This sequence is made up of incomplete
action tenses
– Present
– Future
The subordinates for primary sequence
are either
– Present subjunctive – action at the same time
– Perfect subjunctive – action previous to
Secondary Sequence
This sequence is made up of complete
action tenses
– All past tenses
The subordinates for secondary sequence
– Imperfect subjunct. – action at the same time
– Pluperfect subjunct. – action previous to
The Main Point
The main thing to remember is that the
subjunctive in the subordinate clause will
translate to English differently depending
upon its main clause verb.