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She was never the same person Frank met before.

or:

She was not the same person Frank met before.

Is the two sentence exchangeable? Can the “never” replace the “not”?

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They do not necessarily mean the same thing.

(Note that "the same person" is used figuratively. Obviously, she is the same person—unless it's a different identical twin that's being discussed and the wording is being deliberately misleading. But here, it's talking about behaviour, beliefs, and so on.)

She was not the same person Frank had met before.

This means that her, or her behaviour, has changed between their current meeting and their previous meeting or meetings. Before can be taken to mean a single most recent meeting in the past or it can refer to a series of past meetings.


She was never the same person Frank had met before.

This is actually ungrammatical—although mostly understandable. However, there are two possible interpretations, and it should be rephrased to match the one that's intended.

She had never before been the person Frank now met.

This means that not only had she not been the the same person in her last meeting with Frank, but she had also not been the same person with him at any of their meetings (if there had been more than one).

If there had been more than a single past meeting, never is applied to them all as a whole. Without never (as in the first example sentence) it may only be talking about a specific meeting in the past—leaving open the possibility that she could could have been the same person at some others.

There is another possible interpretation:

She would never again be the same person Frank met before.

This means that something has permanently changed and she won't go back to being who she had been.

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