The KISS Printable Books Page
(Code and Color Key)

The Subjunctive Mood
Lassie, Come Home, by Eric Knight 
Analysis Key

1. Joe did not know why (DO), | but it seemed [Adv. to "seemed" as though 

the oatmeal were stuck (PA) [#1] {in his throat}]. |

2. "Before, I were working [#2] . | But now I'll have to face ye (DO) {wit it} | 

-- I'm {on the dole}. [#3]" |

3. Now she looked [Adv. to "looked" as if she were using [#4] all four feet (DO)]. |

4. [Adv. (subjunctive) to "might have let" Had the man walked {toward her}], she 

might have let him place his hand [#5] {on her}. |

5. He shouted it (DO) {with an air} {of proud ownership}, [Adv. to "shouted" 

as if he alone [#6] , the Duke [#7] {of Rudling}, were [#8] responsible (PA)

{for the tang} {in the air} and {*for* the gentle warmth} {of the sun}]. |

1. I have explained "stuck" as a (gerundive) that functions as a predicate adjective rather than considering "were stuck" as a passive verb because the sentence implies the state of the oatmeal rather than someone or some thing sticking it. The "oatmeal were" is subjunctive because it wasn't stuck. [Remember that the major reason for studying the subjunctive is to note that these verbs are not subject/verb agreement errors.]
2. Grammarians would have fun with this one. It is spoken by Sam Carralough," and is probably more a question of dialect than it is of the subjunctive. I've included it because it can be used as a starting point for the dialect present in Lassie, Come Home.
3. Note how this main clause explains what "it" is, and thus can also be viewed as functioning as an appositive to "it."
4. "She were" because she wasn't.
5.  "Hand" is the direct object, and "him" is the subject of the infinitive "place." The infinitive phrase functions as the direct object of "might have let."
6. "Alone" will evoke multiple explanations from grammarians. Within KISS, we can explain it as a post-positioned adjective to "he," or as an adverb to "were." (It is not a major question for students, who can all use "alone" in this sense correctly, so there is no sense in belaboring the point.)
7. "Duke" is an appositive to "he."
8. "He were" because he wasn't.