Quoting Carsten Becker <[log in to unmask]>:

> Maybe I'm a little late with my response and it has already been answered
> what I'm writing... It's just about "Ich möchte".
> From: "Andreas Johansson" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Sunday, January 11, 2004 12:43 PM
> Subject: Re: The phrase 'I'd like...'
> Quoting Roger Mills <[log in to unmask]>:
> > > I seem to recall that the French equivalent is "Je voudrais . . ."
> > literally
> > > "I would want . . ."  That strikes me as a slightly less indirect way of
> > > getting the point across.
> > >
> > And Spanish yo quisiera, Germ. ich möchte (?)(subjunctives) , probably
> Ital.
> > io vorebbe (?)...(conditional, like French)
> >
> >
> > German indeed has _ich möchte_ and so on. It's pretty literally "I would
> > like" - cf indicative _ich mag_ "I like".
> >
> >                                                 Andreas
> Yes, "je voudrais" is conditionel I (future I + imparfait). As for German, I
> don't know what mood "ich möchte" is, I must admit. I don't believe ?möchten
> exists ... *looks up in the Duden* ... no, it doesn't exist (although
> wouldn't be impossible I think!). I haven't got an etymologic dictionary at
> hand, so then I *guess* "möchte" comes from "mögen" (to like). Would be
> sensible, because indicative = mögen, past = mochte, Konjunktiv I = ich
> möge, Konjunktiv II = ich möchte(/würde mögen*). The Konjunktiv II forms are
> always derived from the past form, Konjunktiv II is derived from the
> indicative form. Besides, you can also say "Ich hätte gerne ..." (I would
> like to have... => I'd like (to have)...). So from my assumptions: "ich
> möchte" is subjunctive and thus kind of an indirect expression.

It feels rather funny saying this to a native speaker (tm), but yes, _möchte_
is formally past subjunctive ('Konjunktiv II') of _mögen_. One could no doubt
make a case it's a separate lexeme in modern German - I'm in no position to
tell whether it would be a _good_ case.

The form _möchten_ exists, of course - past subjunctive plural; _wir
möchten_ "we would like".