17
votes
8answers
3k views

What does 'infinitesimally small' mean?

If infinite is the opposite of infinitesimal, and small is the opposite of large, then: infinitely large ---------- Means "very large" infinitely small --------- Means "very small" infinitesimally ...
0
votes
2answers
129 views

Negating ‘to’-infinitive in negative clause

The sentence: There aren't any reasons to do it. I'd like to say other form of this phrase with opposite meaning. Something like this: There aren't any reasons to don't do it. How to say this form ...
2
votes
3answers
221 views

Can a double negative be used to express caution or uncertainty?

In the following statement, what is the effect of the double negative? Is it necessarily emphasis? Or could it be a kind of cautious statement implying a degree of uncertainty? If a double negative ...
5
votes
1answer
346 views

Double negation “does not any”

I understand that any has negative connotations, as can be seen in the above link, but I need to say that there are no pages in a book. I've come up with the following sentence: That book does not ...
2
votes
2answers
486 views

Does double negation turn “neither” into “either”?

Peter Guess posted tongue twister with a construct where something occurs that creates what looks like a paradox to me. neither either...or...or nor neither...nor...nor are either particularly ...
2
votes
1answer
228 views

Double 'not' in questions - how is it correct?

Suppose the following sentence: "Aren't the headers not covered by copyright?" Is this sentence correct?
3
votes
2answers
3k views

What exactly is meant by “This is not to say it's not a bad system”?

Someone on a forum wrote This is not to say it's not a bad system. With some context, This is not a component system. This is not to say it's not a bad system, but in this case you should be ...
0
votes
2answers
5k views

“Like” versus “not unlike”

Just out of curiousity, how did this double negative come to be? When I use it, it's often because I want to emphasise the fact that x is not y but is still similar in some way, whereas "like" ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

Are “not uncommon” and similar phrases double negatives? Should their use be avoided?

When I think of double negatives I think of phrases that grate on the ears, like: I'm not going to do no homework. I'm never going to not go visit Graceland. There are some phrases that ...
5
votes
3answers
185 views

Parenthetical double negation?

Is this a double negation? Is it still grammatically correct? If not, what is a better form? He cannot go outside (legally, not physically), because he is under house arrest. The meaning is that ...
7
votes
1answer
6k views

“Not bad either” versus “not bad neither”

There are more Google matches for the first sentence, but the last one sounds better to me. Which one is correct?