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INFINITIVE AS OBJECT IN INDIRECT DISCOURSE
The infinitive is used as the object of verbs of saying and thinking. Such infinitives denote both time and stage of action (cp. cross1866).
a. The finite verb of a sentence placed in dependence on a verb of saying or thinking that requires the infinitive, becomes infinitive, which infinitive stands in the relation of a substantive as subject or object of the leading verb. Commonly as object: thus, Κῦρος νι_κᾷ Cyrus is victorious, when made the object of φησί he says, becomes a part of a new sentence φησὶ Κῦρον νι_κᾶν, in which Κῦρον νικᾶν is the object of φησί. As subject, when the verb of saying is passive: thus, in λέγεται Κῦρον νι_κᾶν, the last two words form the subject of λέγεται.
Verbs of saying are e.g.: say φημί, φάσκω, λέγω; confess ὁμολογῶ; promise ὑπισχνοῦμαι, ὑποδέχομαι, ἐπαγγέλλομαι, ὑφίσταμαι; pretend προσποιοῦμαι; swear ὄμνυ_μι; deny ἀπαρνοῦμαι; gainsay ἀντιλέγω; dispute ἀμφισβητῶ, etc.
Some verbs of saying admit other constructions than the infinitive, and especially ὅτι or ὡς ( cross2579). λέγω, εἶπον, φράζω, φωνῶ with ὅτι or ὡς mean say, with the infinitive command ( cross1997).
a. φημί say, assert, express the opinion that in classical Greek is almost always followed by the infinitive, but by ὅτι very often in the later language. φημὶ ὅτι occurs in X. A. 7.1.5 (φημὶ ὡς in L. 7.19, X. H. 6.3.7; D. 4.48, 27. 19 by anacoluthon).
b. λέγω state (impart a fact) takes either the infinitive or ὅτι or ὡς. The infinitive occurs usually with the passive (λέγεται, etc.) either in the personal or impersonal construction ( cross1982 a). The active forms of λέγω with the infinitive mean command ( cross1997).
c. εἶπον said usually takes ὅτι or ὡς; with the infinitive, it commonly means commanded ( cross1997). Cp. the double use of told.
N.—εἶπον meaning said with the infinitive is rare, but occurs in good Attic prose: And. 1.57, 80; Thuc. 7. 35; Lys. 10. 6, 10. 9, 10. 12; Xen. H. 1. 6. 7, 2. 2. 15, C. 5. 5. 24, S. 2. 13; Is. 2.29; Lyc. 50; Aes. 3.37, 3. 59; Dem. 15. 18; Plato, G. 473 a, 503 d, Lach. 192 b, Charm. 174 a, Hipp. Maj. 291 b, Pol. 263 c, 290 b, L. 654 a, Clitoph. 409 a, 410 b. In poetry this use is frequent.
Verbs of thinking almost always take the infinitive. Such are: think ἡγοῦμαι, οἴομαι, δοκῶ, νομίζω; hope ἐλπίζω; suppose ὑπολαμβάνω; suspect ὑποπτεύω; guess εἰκάζω; feel confident πιστεύω; disbelieve ἀπιστῶ. The use of ὡς is rare, while ὅτι is very rare ( cross2580).
a. Verbs of perceiving sometimes take the infinitive by analogy to verbs of thinking; as ἀκούω, αἰσθάνομαι, πυνθάνομαι ( cross2144).
Each tense of direct discourse is retained (with its proper meaning as regards stage of action) when it becomes infinitive in indirect discourse; but an imperfect is represented by the present infinitive; a pluperfect, by the perfect infinitive. See cross1866, cross1867.
An original οὐ of direct discourse is generally, an original μή is always, retained in indirect discourse. But in some cases οὐ becomes μή ( cross2723 ff.).
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The infinitive is the subject of the passive of verbs of saying and thinking ( cross1982 a). So with δοκεῖ it seems, φαίνεται it is plain, etc.
The infinitive represents a finite verb after verbs of saying and thinking.
L. 12.49, οὐδεὶς ἔφασκεν γιγνώσκειν αὐτόν nobody said that he knew him 23. 3, οἱ ἡγεμόνες οὔ φα_σιν ( cross2692)
εὖνοί φα_σιν εἶναι they assert that they are loyal
X. A. 4.1.21,
εἶναι ἄλλην ὁδόν the guides say there is no other road
X. C. 7.1.18. Other examples 1867.
πάντες ἐροῦσι τὸ λοιπὸν μηδὲν εἶναι κερδαλεώτερον τῆς ἀρετῆς everybody in time to come will say that there is nothing more profitable than bravery
b. βασιλεὺς νι_κᾶν ἡγεῖται the king thinks he is victorious ( = νι_κῶ, cp. cross1887) X. A. 2.1.11, οἴομαι βέλτιστον εἶναι I think it is best 5. 1. 8, ὑπώπτευον ἐπὶ βασιλέα_ ἰέναι they suspected that they were to go against the king 1. 3. 1, (Σωκράτης)
X. M. 3.9.6.
τὸ ἀγνοεῖν ἑαυτὸν ἐγγυτάτω . . . μανία_ς ἐλογίζετο εἶναι Socrates was of the opinion that for a man not to know himself was very near to madness
c. When a word of saying is expressed or implied in what precedes, several infinitives may be used where the indicative is employed in translation. So in the narration in X. C. 1.3.5-6.
The infinitive with ἄν represents an indicative with ἄν or a potential optative with ἄν. See cross1846, cross1848, cross1849, cross2270.
Verbs signifying to hope, expect, promise, threaten , and swear take the future infinitive in indirect discourse, and the aorist (less often the present) infinitive not in indirect discourse (like verbs of will or desire, 1868, cross1999). ἐλπίζω ταῦτα ποιήσειν I hope that I shall do this, ἐλπίζω ταῦτα ποιῆσαι or ποιεῖν I hope to do this.