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'If it is on this account.' Peah is added by the translator to emphasize the point; he means, 'in spite of your complaint.
There is a stronger concessive sense in the following passages, but the gif-clause must, in my judgment, be regarded as having a double use. It is seen first as a condition : 'take the case when.' As, however, it refers to an exceptional case, the writer views it also as a concession, and adds an adversative. All the following conditions translate Latin si, without any adversative following. BR. 53. 14 Gif he þænne eft for his undeawum utfærð oþhe adræfed bið, he þeah sy onfangen oð þan þriddan siðe (quod si); 54. 13 gif hwylc broðor unsceаdelice hwes bidde, he peah hine ne geunrotsige (si quis frater); 73. 16 Gif ... swa micel þearf . beo ne beon hy peah . ; Inst. 360. 1 Gif swyn etað merten flæsc ... we gelyfað þ hi swa þeah ne synt to awurpanne. In these passages the presence of the adversative shows a desire to mark the implied conflict between protasis and apodosis more clearly than was done in the Latin text.
A similar double use of the clause, with an adversative appearing in the Latin : Inst. 368. 16 gif heo (the woman) þonne gewitnysse hebbe, Þ heo (the maidservant] scyldig wære, feste heo þeah III gear (si autem testimonium habeat ... nihilominus jejunet).
The same double use of a clause, in a passage not from the Latin : Laws 62. 19 Gif at dissa misdæda hwelcere se hund losige, ga deos bot hwædre forð. Of the same nature is the interpolated sentence in PPs. 40. 1 se þe ongyt þæs þearfan ... and him þonne gefultumað, gif hine to onhagað (pure condition); gif hine ne onhagað (condition), þonne ne licað him beah [adversative to condition) his earfoðu.
Cases where gif before an adversative is equivalent
to simple beah are rare. In L. 11. 8, gyf he ne arist and him syld ... þeah hwæbere represents etsi non dabit illi surgens ... tamen of the Vulgate. This is very likely based on si in some faulty manuscript, for confusion between etsi and si is very natural. The same explanation may be offered for Bo. 20. 21, discussed under C below. In L. 11. 8, however, the use of gif with the indicative may be due (since Jeah is usually followed by the optative), to a desire to render the future of the Latin.
C. Condition without Adversative. It is among clauses without a following adversative that we must chiefly look for examples of gif introducing a simple concession. Accordingly, it is among the same clauses that we can observe the distinction, already discussed, between gif meaning "even if it is (or be) true that, and meaning 'granted. Most examples of the former use are due to the influence of Latin si, concessively used. Gif in the passages following translates si: CP. 437. 10 gif hi oferhycgen Gæt hi him ondræden hiora lytlan synna donne donne hi hi gesioð, ondræden hi him huru, donne hi hi hrimað; John 21. 22,23 Gif ic wylle þæt he wunige dus oð ic cume, hwæt to þe? etc. In these cases, Modern English tends to use if; but the adversative sense is present. In Old English, when uninfluenced by Latin, the tendency is rather to use Jeah.
There is one curious instance of and gif apparently meaning although,' in a quotation from a Latin source. ÆH. 2. 322. 10 Helpað ofsettum ... and Greagað me siððan. pis sæde Drihten, and gif eowere synna wæron wolon-reade ær dan, hi beoð scinende on hwitnysse. The Vulg. has: et arguite me, dicit Dominus: si fuerint peccata vestra ut coccinum, quasi nix dealbabuntur. It is possible that and is here an intensive; cf. HL. 142. 96 and þeah þu mare næbbe. It is probably, however, simply continuative, connecting the two parts of the quotation. In either case, gif stands for concessive si.
Another concession introduced by gif is in Bo. 20. 21, gif hit on ænegum ænige hwile fæstlice wunað, se deaþ hit huru aferred-death, at any rate, removes it.' The Latin has : etsi rara est fortuitis manendi fides ... tamen ... This may be a deliberate use of gif in the sense of although’; or it may be a free translation, or a copying of a variant in the Latin manuscript-reading si for etsi. On this point, cf. B above.
It is evident that gif and deah do not interchange, in simple concessions, so freely as Modern English if and although. We find gif translating etsi, for which si would be a natural variant, but not, so far as I have observed, translating the unmistakable concessive conjunctions quamvis, quamquam, and licet, and only exceptionally translating cum.
The looser concessive use of gif, 'granted,' never mind though, with no clear logical opposition between subordinate and principal clause, I have noted chiefly in the works of Ælfric: AH. 1. 56. 3 Ne wiðcwede we þæt hit micel gedeorf ne sy; ac gif hit is hefigtyme on dyssere worulde, hit becymð to micelre mede on Jære toweardan; 350. 2 gif sume beoð strengran on geearnungum þæt heora nan ne beo geælfremod fram dam micclan huse; LS. 1.360. 350 gif we forleosað þas lænan woruld-ðingc, bonne sceole we witan þæt ure wunung nis na her; 2. 440. 232 gif ic ofer-swiðan ne mihte hine er cucene, ic hine witnige deadne.
One example, at least, occurs as a reproduction of the Latin idiom: CP. 337. 20 Gif we nauht ðæs ne dooð đe us mon mid goode leanian Gyrfe, ne do we
eac nan woh de us mon fore tælan ðurfe (et (copula] si digna misericordiae retributione non agimus, nulla tamen perversa perpetramus). It is noticeable here that the adversative of the Latin is replaced by the weaker eac-neither do we commit
A similar construction is fairly common in modern usage. For example: Leigh Hunt, Wishing-Cap Papers (London, 1830), p. 240 Garth was often at Hampstead, if he never lived there.
D. Inadvertent Concessive Conditions. A sentence may begin with a conditional protasis, pointing towards a conclusion of some kind, and continue in the same form with a concessive protasis, bringing forward something in the way of that conclusion. Bo. 112. 10 þær he hit a anginnan wolde, 7 þon on þam gewinne þurhwunian ne mihte, þon næfde he his nane scylde; “if he had ever made a beginning, he would not be blamed, even though he could not endure in the fight.' Another instance is due to a similar construction in a Latin text: John 10. 38 Gif ic wyrce mines Fæder weorc, and gif ge me nellað gelyfan, gelyfað þam weorcum (Vulg. : Si autem facio, et si mihi non vultis credere, operibus credite). This construction is natural in unstudied speech, and is evidently related to the coördinate concessions to be considered in Chapter VII.
CORRELATED COMPARATIVE CLAUSES. Old English has a well-developed correlative construction-analogous to the Latin quo plus ... eo plus -in which two comparatives are balanced by means of swa ... swa. The generic sense of this idiom is quantitative; it implies that some one notion is true in the same degree as some other. According to the exact relation between the two implied by the context, the construction may be termed modal, causal, or concessive. All these uses are clearly established in Old English, although the concessive use is the least common. And all are inherited by Modern English, but with swa replaced by adverbial the. Hazlitt says, for example, the more he strives, is but the more enveloped “in the crust of formality”.? In Old English, although dy is much used with comparatives, it is only beginning to invade the correlative construction. I have found only one instance —and that very late-of dy in place of swa in a concessive sentence of this form : Chron. 266. 18 æfre þe mare he iaf heom, þe wærse hi wæron him.
An approach to the concessive use of the comparative may be seen in simple contrasts of quantity. We find the latter representing the antithetic Latin verbs of Orosius : O. 246. 8 Antonius hæfde eahtatig scipa, on þæm wæron farende x legian, for þon swa micle swa he læs hæfde, swa micle hie wäron beteran 7 maran (quantum numero cedens, tantum magnitudine praecellens). Here there is a balancing of facts, but hardly concession, for neither fact is definitely represented as in conflict with the other. When the first clause gives a reason or circumstance naturally leading to a certain result, and the second gives the opposite result which actually does follow, we have concession. Swa ic swypor drince, swa me swypor þyrsted (Dial. 116. 21) is a more emphatic way of saying, “Although I drink, I thirst.' But a temporal element also is usually present in concessions of this sort; the opposition of two facts is stated not
1 English Comic Writers (London, 1900) p. 55 (Shakespeare and Ben Jonson).