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There is no friend not invited to my party.

In this sentence, the writer uses "reduced negative passive relative clause". But it is too complicated for me to understand. Is this sentence"grammatically correct"?

  • Isn't this a double negative? The possible correction: There is no friend which has not been invited to my party. – Michael Login Aug 20 '17 at 17:46
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    As a language learning matter (ELL, after all) I don't see where improvement will happen unless you tell us why it "is too complicated for me to understand". – user3169 Aug 20 '17 at 17:56
  • @MvLog "friend" is a person, so you should use "who", NOT "which", after it. – Gustavson Aug 20 '17 at 18:12
  • @AungThu The sentence sounds very strange as it is. It would be more usual to say something like: I have invited all of my friends to my party. "not + past /present participle" can be used as a reduced relative clause after certain structures, like: I'm the only one not invited to his party (= the only one who has not been invited) – Gustavson Aug 20 '17 at 18:17
  • @Gustavson Yes, you are right, it should be who in this case (in the relative construction). But as a question word it's quite possible: Which teacher do you like best? – Michael Login Aug 20 '17 at 18:25
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This is a "double-negative" expression, as @MvLog stated.

If you have trouble understanding it, a good start is to do as @Gustavson suggests -- change both negatives to positives.

There is no friend not invited to my party.

This is the same in meaning:

No friend is not invited to my party.

And now you can cancel out the two negatives to make a positive statement.

Every friend is invited to my party.

This is similar in meaning to the double negative, but there is a difference. If someone accuses you of not inviting your ex-wife, for example, you might feel defensive and say No friend is not invited. This is more emphatic and specific to the accusation than the more general phrase every friend is invited. Also, the double-negative in this case might sound impolite, whereas the positive statement connotes more optimism and may be a more tactful or agreeable way to communicate with your ex-wife, who you secretly despise.

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