Negation is the process that turns an affirmative statement (e.g. "I am American") into its opposite denial (e.g. "I am not American").

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Negative form of “Here comes the guy” [closed]

Consider the sentence: Here comes the guy. What would be the best negative form of this sentence--not normal negative like "The guy doesn't come here", but both inverted and negative? One ...
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4answers
3k views

What's the distinction between “nonessential” and “inessential”?

I'm revising a text that uses the word "nonessential", but my ear is telling me "inessential." Usually when there are two very similar words like this, there is some subtle (or not so subtle) ...
4
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2answers
101 views

It Is Imperative That You Be Not Afraid?

A question closed recently as proofreading asked about the grammaticality of the following subjunctive statement: They suggested that the washing machine not be put in that place. To my ear, that ...
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1answer
77 views

“So shouldn't you”?

So shouldn't you: is this grammatically correct? Or is you shouldn't either the only appropriate response?
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1answer
104 views

reporting statements: that-clauses [closed]

How would you write the negative statement of: She declared the item to be faulty, the police reported the girl to be missing. Would it be: She declared the item not to be faulty, the ...
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1answer
34 views

Possessive followed by negative gerund

Is it correct to say this? Her not paying attention to the class annoys me.
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2answers
59 views

Which one is better?

" They want nobody's sympathy." Or " They don't want anyone's sympathy." I know they're grammatically correct, but I guess they suit at separate occasions. I mean, one means slightly diffetent. Am i ...
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5answers
5k views

“Undistinguishable” vs. “indistinguishable”

Is there a difference between these two words? To me, it seems that undistinguishable is more where you can't tell what it is, and indistinguishable seems to be where they're the same. It seems a lot ...
3
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2answers
586 views

Can I use 'better still' in negative sentences?

Can I use 'better still' in a negative sentence? I'm especially interested in American English usage. Does it sound natural to say: You may not have the access to a trusted counselling, or better ...
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5answers
3k views

Is “incomplex” a legitimate word?

I want to create a poster titled "An Incomplex Introduction to Complexity-based Cryptography." As you see, it contrasts the words incomplex and complexity. (Words like simple or easy do not provide ...
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2answers
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Negation in English

In English, there are at least two ways to express negation, for example: — I don't have money — I have no money or — No objects were found — Objects were not found or — No restrictions are applied ...
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Usage of “no more” in a sentence

I would need help with the following sentence: It may be no more difficult to claim in words a feeling not felt than one that is. The “no more” is related to the whole sentence or just to the ...
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2answers
5k views

Interpreting “not bad”

In conversations people often use "not bad". How to interpret this? Are they feeling good or just not bad or somewhere in the middle? Does it depend on the context? E.g.: X: How are you doing ...
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3answers
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Why do we say INcomplete but UNcompleted?

I'm a native speaker and it's just occurred to me that this is a strange irregularity: "The work is incomplete." < Fine "The work is uncompleted." < Less common but still sounds ...
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1answer
141 views

“I don't agree totally” vs. “I don't totally agree” vs. “I totally don't agree”

What is the difference between the following? I don't agree with him totally. I don't totally agree with him. I totally don't agree with him. I'm puzzled at the meaning of negative ...
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1answer
51 views

On the target of “not”

I would like to know the target of the word "not" in the following sentence. The problem is that Britons were never given a chance to vote on whether they wanted the CCTV cameras set up or not. ...
2
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3answers
120 views

“or not” vs. “or no”: Which one is correct? [closed]

Which of the following is correct? Are you coming to the gym or not? Are you coming to the gym or no?
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3answers
3k views

Is “Stick no bills” correct English?

'Stick no bills' sounds awkward. Shouldn't it be something like 'Do not stick any bills'?
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2answers
838 views

What are the meanings of the sentences where “Not that” is followed by an object-missing expression?

According to my observation, there are at least two types of using "Not that....". And my question is: what does "not that" mean in its second type of usage? In the first usage, "not that" is ...
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3answers
215 views

Negative form of “satisfy”, correct usage of “such”, difference between “quick” and “fast”

I just did an English test on the Internet because I have an entry exam tomorrow and I wanted to recap. I got 91% right, but I wanted to find out why I made these mistakes and what the correct way to ...
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2answers
49 views

Does the phrase “so long as” have a negative sense?

Can I use neither . . . nor following the phrase so long as? I read this sentence in an article: When I was in college a Marwari friend of mine told me that her parents would be totally open to ...
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3answers
56 views

Negation of a chain of verbs conjoined with “and”

Let's consider the following sentence: Ducks are things that walk like ducks and quack like ducks. Now, I wanna negate it to describe something that is not a duck. The most verbose way to do it ...
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4answers
1k views

What exactly does “All Items Not On Sale” mean?

Here's a quote from Bill Bryson's "The Mother Tongue": Imagine being a foreigner and having to learn ... , that a sign in the store saying ALL ITEMS NOT ON SALE doesn't mean literally what it ...
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3answers
2k views

“May not have [noun]” or “may have not [noun]”

Which of the following is correct: may not have or may have not? For example, which sentence should one write? They may not have apples. They may have not apples.
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6answers
208 views

Shift to “must” for negation of “have to”?

According to englishpage.com, if have to or must expresses certainty, the negative form uses must not. Example: That has to be Jerry. They said he was tall with bright red hair. => That must not ...
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1answer
123 views

Most accurate affirmative form of a sentence

The sentence is I can never forget you. We have to find the affirmative form of this sentence without changing its meaning. I can think of two answers for this question. 1.I will always remember ...
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2answers
1k views

Is “will never have been” valid English?

I was reading this phrase "will never have been" and I was wondering what grammatical structure does it belong to / is it grammatical? I'm not sure why but it sounds weird. What is the difference ...
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2answers
2k views

“Would have not” vs. “would not have”

That would not have happened if John had completed his work. That would have not happened if John had completed his work. The former seems correct. The latter doesn't seem incorrect. ...
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1answer
55 views

A word for words that are often seen in their negative forms

Words like "misconstrue" or "disgruntled" are fairly common. But you much less commonly see the word "construe" or "gruntled" Is there a term for words like this?
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5answers
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“Can’t help but” vs. “can help but”

Is "can’t help but" considered to be a confused mix of the expressions "can but" and "can’t help"? If not, what is the difference between "can help but" and "can’t help but"?
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1answer
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“No, I don't” or “No, I do not” in responding English questions

Consider: A: Do you like ice cream? B: No, I don't. Usually in a grammar book when you answer someone's question with negation you'll use shortened answer as in "I don't". I know you can ...
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3answers
83 views

Correct usage of 'not'

I wrote this sentence as the email subject this morning - "Will login not before 12 pm". This has got me thinking if what I wrote is correct or the sentence should have been - "Will not login before ...
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1answer
36 views

Negative granting [closed]

I want to say for example to my kid that tomorrow he has the option to not wear formal shirts in school. What is the best way to say that ? "You can not to wear formal shirt tomorrow" ? Or in some ...
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5answers
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What is the difference between “can't” and “mustn't” in the expressing of prohibition?

You [verb] use your mobile phone while you're driving. It's against the law. What verb should be used? don't have to needn't mustn't can't Is can't correct, or only mustn't is correct? What ...
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3answers
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The word “but” used as negation

I would like to know the grammatical term for using the word but in the following context: John speaks loudly, but he's a nice guy. The word but is used to signify a negation, to create ...
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1answer
610 views

“Unauthentic” vs. “inauthentic” [closed]

Is there really no difference between inauthentic and unauthentic? If there is, which is more correct?
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2answers
497 views

Are there many words that come with “a” as the prefix to mean “no, non” like “asymptomatic” and “apolitical”?

I didn’t know the word, “asymptomatic” to my shame, until I heard the following narration in AP Radio news aired on October 27 through AFN network: “Dr. Anthony Fauci with the NIH says CDC ...
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4answers
855 views

Why do not we ask negative questions without a contraction on the not after the verb?

I have found multiple questions touching on this but not a single one that has a comprehensive answer. The information is all there but in little bits. "Do you not" vs. "Don't ...
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2answers
65 views

about 'couldn't' [closed]

Does anyone know what's wrong with 'couldn't' in the following? I think there couldn’t be any trains today due to the strike, so I’m going by bus. What's interesting is that, There ...
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2answers
71 views

Conjunctive usage with negative imperatives: i.e., 'and' and 'or.' Don't eat and drink on the bus vs. Don't eat or drink on the bus

I tried searching for conjunctive usage within negative imperatives but was unable to find any results. I may have just used the wrong search string. My question is as follows. In the following ...
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2answers
121 views

Using “I don't think” to express an opinion

This morning, I used the phrase "I didn't sleep very well, I don't think" when speaking to my Colombian friend and he asked me what on earth I was talking about. I thought about it and realised that ...
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0answers
75 views

What is the meaning of “no” in “I am no…”? [closed]

What is the difference between "I am no financial expert." and "I am not a financial expert." Are they grammatically correct?
0
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1answer
59 views

In certain case, double negation doesn't cancel the negation?

From time to time I come across a sentence with double negation, but where the meaning is still negative. For example : I don't need no man. I suppose that this sentence means I don't need ...
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1answer
191 views

“I think she is not right” - is this sentence correct?

I know you can say "I don't think she's right" but I was wondering whether there is another way to say that.
6
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3answers
440 views

What is the origin of auxiliary verbs?

When and why did we start using auxiliary verbs, particularly "do", to ask questions and make negatives?
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1answer
195 views

“Why don't you” . . . with. . . “be” . . .?

I confuse about how to use "Why don't you" with "be". I know that we can use "Why don't you" with "Verb" such as Why don't you go with me? However I confuse that if we can use these two sentences. ...
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1answer
60 views

Complex usage of “nor” and explanation

I'm positive this is an acceptable usage of "nor," but I can't find a rule that explains the usage. Please help! He was too tired to walk to the next open crossing. Nor to start an argument.
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8answers
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Is my worst enemy my best friend (interpreting negative adjectives applied to negative nouns)? [closed]

"The worst student" is the student who is bad at things. In this case, "worst" simply describes the noun. Following this logic, your "worst enemy" would be the person who is very bad at being your ...
2
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1answer
210 views

When do I use non-, ir-/i-, dis-, a-, or un-?

Between using the prefixes non-, ir-, i-, and dis-, a-, or un-, meaning "not (root word) to do something", when is the best time to use each?