Should one answer the question "Do you have any brothers or sisters?" saying "I have one brother AND no sisters." or "I have one brother BUT no sisters."?

  • 1
    Both are fine. It's just a very slight shift in nuance / emphasis whether to call attention to the contrast between the existence of brothers and the absence of sisters. Commented Apr 16, 2023 at 10:24
  • Note that if the question had been "Who else lives in your house besides you and your parents?, it might be just about okay to use but, but really weird to use and in the reply There's one brother and two sisters and no dog. Commented Apr 16, 2023 at 10:28

1 Answer 1


Both are fine. You can view the second clause (I have no sisters) as being in addition to the first one, or in contrast with the first one. So both "and" and "but" are reasonable choices for the conjunction.

In a normal colloquial conversation, I would choose to emphasise the contrast and use "but".

  • I think most native speakers would just answer "I have one brother"; you don't need to specify "and/but no sisters."
    – alphabet
    Commented Apr 16, 2023 at 13:04

You must log in to answer this question.

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