Chapter 10. Informational status and the semantics
of mood in Spanish preposed complement clauses
This corpus-based study examines the principles of mood selection in Spanish preposed complement clauses. It tries to prove that the relevant factor for mood selection is not the informational status of the preposed complement clause but its semantic nature or, more precisely, the contrast between intensional and referential readings. This contrast constitutes a specific principle of the Spanish (and that of Romance in general) mood system which comes to bear whenever the subordinate complement clause is not under the scope of a modal operator. This article also shows how the speakers exploit this specific mood contrast in order to produce certain pragmatic and/or stylistic effects.