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“There is no rule” vs. “there isn’t rule”

If I'm not mistaken, both "There isn't a storm." and "There is no storm." have the same meaning.

I understand that the first one is the "contraction" of the second one, but what I can't understand is that if it is the contraction of the second, why the is second "There is no storm" and not "There is not storm"?

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marked as duplicate by RegDwigнt Nov 7 '12 at 23:28

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

    
It's a contraction of There is not a storm, which is also correct, if odd. –  McGarnagle Nov 7 '12 at 22:19
    
I know that isn't is the contraction of is not. Maybe I should have answered on other way. Both there is no and there is not are right? –  yzT Nov 7 '12 at 22:23
    
The contraction of the second sentence in your question would be There's no storm. Both there isn't a storm and there is not a storm are not incorrect, but sound a bit off. –  McGarnagle Nov 7 '12 at 22:34

3 Answers 3

"Isn't" is a contraction of "is not". (Not "is no".)

The correct long form of "there isn't a storm" is "there is not a storm."

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The possibility of using contractions is irrelevant here. OP's examples could be reversed by contrasting there is not a storm with there's no storm - it's all the same.

In such constructions, "no" stands in for "not any". It's possible that with any given formulation, some people might perceive a distinction in either nuance of meaning or "euphony/acceptability". For example...

There is not a God.

There's not a God.

There is no God.

There's no God.

...but I can't say any of those seem inherently "ungrammatical" to me, or mean anything different.

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Because the contraction expands to

  • there is not a storm

The meaning is the same even if the wording is different.

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