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In a common exchange, one might give one answer, and then change their response on new information.

For example,

A: Want to see movie X tonight?

B: Yes.

A: It starts at 11pm.

B: Then no.

.

Is the above usage of "Then no" proper or should it instead be "Than no"? Obviously, there are other grammatical usages possible, but this question is specifically asking whether "than" or "then" is proper in an exchange like the above.

Thank you.

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  • 6
    Have you looked each of these words up in a dictionary? They mean different things. – Davo Mar 28 '17 at 13:49
  • @Davo I have, but their separate definitions do not clearly suggest to me an answer to this common phrase. – Q-Dot Mar 28 '17 at 13:58
  • 2
    Then = "in that case". Than = "in comparison to". Which of the two fits grammatically? – oerkelens Mar 28 '17 at 13:59
  • You'd only use "than" if you were being wishy-washy and said "More yes than no". – Hot Licks Mar 28 '17 at 17:20
4

Now, I think you're mixing two different things with varied meanings over here.

Than

  1. Used in introducing the second element in comparisons
  2. Used in introducing an exception or contrast

Then

  1. At the time in question
  2. After or next to to something
  3. In that case; therefore

References:
[1] https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/than
[2] https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/then

  • 2
    Right. Than is a special-use word; it only occurs in special constructions like the comparative (holier than thou). Then, however, is a part of the grammatical paradigms; it's a time-word related to the time-word when the same way the place-word there is related to the place-words where and here. – John Lawler Mar 28 '17 at 14:25

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