§ 134. Opt. particles. — The common opt. part. is לוּ, less usually אִם. The perf. or impf. will be used according to reference. Nu. 14:2 לוּ־מַתְנוּ בְּאֶרֶץ מ׳ would we had died in the land of Egypt; Nu. 20:3, Jos. 7:7. Is. 63:19 לוּא קָרַעְתָּ שָׁמַיִם would thou hadst rent (i.e. wouldst rend. — perf. caused by the importunity. So 48:18 — hardly a real past). — With impf., Gen. 17:18 לוּ ישׁ׳ יִֽחְיֶה O that Ishmael might live; Job 6:2 לוּ שָׁקוֹל יִשָּׁקְל כַּעְשִׂי O that my trouble were weighed (apod. כִּי עַתָּה). With imper., Gen. 23:13; ptcp., Ps. 81:14. — Ps. 139:19 אִם תִּקְטֹל רָשָׁע O that thou wouldst kill the wicked. Ps. 81:9; 95:7; Pr. 24:11.
§ 135. An interrog. sent. with מִי who? expresses a wish. 2 S. 23:15 מִי יַשְׁקֵנִי מַיִם O that I had water to drink! (lit., who will let me drink!). Ps. 4:7 מִי יַרְאֵנוּ טוֹב O that we saw some success! Nu. 11:4, 2 S. 15:4, cf. Mal. 1:10. — Particularly the phrase מִי יִתֵּן who will give? 2 S. 19:1 מִי יִתֵּן מוּתִי אֲנִי תַחְתֶּיךָ would that I had died for thee! Ex. 16:3. With impf., Job 6:8 מִי יִתֵּן תָּבוֹא שֶֽׁאֱלָתִי O that my request might come! Job 13:5; 14:13.
Rem. 1. The opt. sense of לוּ, אִם, has arisen out of the conditional use; cf. Gen. 24:42, Ex. 32:32, where the transition is seen.
Rem. 2. A rare opt. part. is אַֽחֲלֵי, אַחְלַי (out of אח and לי = לו), 2 K. 5:3, Ps. 119:5 (אָז in apod).
Rem. 3. The consn. of מי יתן varies. (1</?LLS nbr?>) One acc., Jud. 9:29, Deu. 28:67, Ps. 14:7; 55:7, Job 14:4; 29:2 (suff.), 31:31, 35 (ptcp.). (2) Two acc., Nu. 11:29, Jer. 8:23; 9:1 (verbs of granting, 2 acc. § 78, R. 1; unless the consn. be who will set me in the wild, (in) a lodge, as Jos. 15:19, Jud. 1:15 where ארן might be acc. of place). (3) inf. cons. 2 S. 19:1, Ex. 16:3; acc. and inf., Job 11:5 מִי יִתֵּן אֱלוֹהַּ דַּבֵּר that God would speak (anomalous order perhaps due to emph. on God). (4) Simple impf., Job 6:8; 13:5; 14:13; impf. with vav, Job 19:23; vav conv. perf., Deu. 5:26