4

We use short forms for verb + not like isn't, aren't, hasn't, won't, wasn't etc. But I haven't seen any short form used for am+not. So, I want to know if any short form exists for am not.

Note: In one book I had seen that aren't can be used for am+not. Is this right?

  • Aren't for am not has its own special rule: it's only possible with inversion. Aren't I is perfectly grammatical, but *I aren't is ungrammatical. – snailboat Nov 1 '15 at 4:28
  • "Amn't" is used only Scotland. – Takahiro Waki Sep 6 '16 at 10:34
5

If you're using very informal language you can use ain't.

I ain't happy about this.

But even native speakers wouldn't necessarily say that, as it's a colloquialism that not everyone uses. I would say:

I'm not happy about this.

  • 1
    To add, I've seen the form "aren't" following a statement, like "I am trying to be useful today, aren't I?" – Victor Bazarov Aug 20 '15 at 13:04
  • 2
    "Ain't" is grammatical, but it carries more cultural associations than most contractions: it can suggest the speaker is uneducated, rural, or low-class (or a combination of those). People sometimes avoid it for this reason alone, and either avoid a contraction entirely, or use a not-quite-correct substitution like "aren't" (as Victor Bazarov notes). If a novelist writes dialog with the word "ain't" they are almost certainly trying to convey something about the speaker's demeanor or background. I have seen the contraction "amn't" used instead of "ain't" but I don't think it is widely accepted. – Wim Lewis Aug 20 '15 at 18:36

protected by snailboat Jan 11 '18 at 15:09

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count).

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.