0

There is a pair of sentences:

I have not yet been to that city.
I have yet not been to that city.

Are both sentences grammatically correct? If not, which is correct?

Thank you!

1
  • 1
    The usual place for not is after the first auxiliary verb (have in this sentence), so the first one is fine. The second one moves yet to that position and follows it with not, which is odd and should have a reason. No obvious reason presents itself, however, so I would avoid that one. Sep 5, 2022 at 16:06

1 Answer 1

0

In normal use the first sentence "I have not yet been to that city" is used and means the same as "I have not been to that city yet". Both of those sentences mean that the speaker has, up to the time of speaking, not been to the city in question but there is a possibility that they might go in the future.

"I have yet not been to that city" is just about grammatical but so unusual that it sounds very odd. Not only does it sound odd but it has a different meaning, it would only make sense as a statement that the speaker has never visited the city at all in spite of a suggestion or evidence to the contrary. It would have the same meaning as "Yet I have not been to that city" which is much more normal.

A possible use for it would be in a police investigation involving a photograph of the speaker next to a famous landmark in the city (for example they might be shown near the Leaning Tower of Pisa standing with a known criminal who lives there). The suspect might say "I have yet not been to that city, the picture must have been Photoshopped." However they would be much more likely to say "Yet I have not been to that city, the picture must have been Photoshopped." The "I have yet not..." version would be just about grammatical but is very unlikely to be used. Do not use it, you will sound like a non-native speaker.

1
  • Thank you very much! Indeed, I am really not a non-native speaker. Sep 6, 2022 at 2:35

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .