You are here

ὅπως with indicative future in main clause: urgent hortation


ἀλλ’ ὅπως ἀνὴρ ἔσῃ

‘Come on, be a man.’ (Eur. Cycl. 595)

A main clause in the indicative future, preceded by ὅπως (or, rarely, ὡς), signals an urgent hortation. This construction is typical of spoken language.

Lexical usage

In the classical period only the conjunctions ὅπως and, less frequently, ὡς are used. In other periods ἵνα also occurs.

Syntactic usage

The indicative future is the most usual construction; in rare cases the subjunctive may also occur.

Historical background

This construction is typical of late Ionic and Attic texts, particularly when spoken language is being presented.
This use of ὅπως can be explained as the result of an elliptic construction: '[See to it] that ...' (Greek: σκόπει (σκοπεῖτε), ὅρᾱ (ὁρᾶτε)); '[Watch out] that ... not ...'


The construction with the future indicative occurs around eighty times, while the construction with the subjective only occurs six times (Amigues, apud Duhoux).

Example Sentences: 

ὅπως τοίνυν μὴ φανήσεται ἐν τῷ λόγῳ τοῖς τριάκοντα ἐναντιούμενος

Then he should not give the impression that he opposed the thirty in a discussion.

γῆς μ’ ὅπως πέμψεις ἄποικον.

See to it that you send me uprooted from this land.

καὶ ὅπως μὴ ἐκεῖνο ἐρεῖς, ὅτι ἐμὸς ἀδελφιδοῦς.

Take good care not to say that he is my nephew.

λαβὲ τὴν μάχαιραν· εἶθ’ ὅπως μαγειρικῶς σφάξεις τὸν οἶν.

Take the knife; slaughter the lamb like a real cook.