Questions tagged [negation]

"Negation" is the process that turns an affirmative statement into its opposite denial.

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Negation of gapping coordination - some doubts related to “or” and negation

Please refer to page no. 791 of The Cambridge Grammar of the English Language. Both in chapter 15 and in this snippet it says or implies that either one or some of the coordinated elements are true. ...
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was not arrogant and

a. He was not arrogant and helpful. b. He was not arrogant, and helpful. c. He was not arrogant and very helpful. d. He was not arrogant, and very helpful. Are the above sentences grammatically ...
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How to make this hypothesis in a negative form?

I'm learning conditional statements in Math and I am tasked to make the hypothesis and the conclusion rewritten in a negative form. This one is where I have trouble with: If a polygon has exactly ...
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“I don't think there's someone home.” vs “I don't think there's anyone home.”

I saw this question on a test: "I don't think there's _________ home." One has to put a word in the empty space. So I thought to myself: someone or anyone? On one hand, my first reaction ...
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What does 'not' mean in a positive sentence?

“Let’s go, then,” he said, taking his cloak, his sword, and his three pistols, and uselessly opening three or four drawers to see if he might not find a stray pistole. How can I understand the usage ...
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Can “You, too” be a negative short reply to a negative command, if you want to tell him not to do what he has just wanted you not to

Suppose there are two people. One of them tells the other to do something and the other wants the other person to do the same. So, A tells B "Eat an apple", B wants A to do the same thing. ...
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need help understanding the function of 'not' [duplicate]

I will go to school, but not if it is snowing, if I finish my homework. Can "not" serve as a substitute for "I will not go to school"? If so, does the "if I finish my homework&...
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can “not” substitute a negative independent clause

If I said, "I will dance in the production (pause and sigh) not because my mom wants me to..." is "not" negating "because my mom wants me to" or is it serving as a ...
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what is “not” serving as?

I will go to the beach, but not if it is raining. What is the independent clause(s) in the above sentence to which "if it is raining" is/are attaching to. Is "not" serving as the ...
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if you add “not” before a dependent clause does it become an independent clause? [duplicate]

Original sentence: "I will go to school, but not when it is snowing." If "not" serves as a substitute for the negative clause as "I will not go school", then I see 2 ...
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Negative sentences understand [closed]

How do we understand negative sentences? Are these sentences a negative sentence? 1-It's not what their parents want for them either. 2-There are bright spots of hope though - newcomers such as ...
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How to negate “I told everyone everything about the event.”?

I found several ways to negate the sentence "I told everyone everything about the event.": I told someone everything about the event. I told everyone something but not all about the event. ...
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Using “but” with modals

Friend: John, can you come to the party tonight? John: Sorry, no. I could come, but my mum is very ill and I have to take care of her. John: Sorry, no. I could've come, but my mum is very ill and I ...
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Is it correct to say “I am in the wrong”?

as in "I assume to have good knowledge on his biography (example). But now I realize I am in the wrong."
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the reason he left the country

a. The reason he left the country was not to deal with this problem. Is that sentence ambiguous? I see two possible meanings: The reason he left the country wasn't to deal with this problem. The ...
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word order in the negative infinitive [duplicate]

Is there any rule that regulates the word order in the negative infinitive form? If the infinitive follows certain verbs in a sentence, it's clear that it should be 'not+to+inf'. For example, We ...
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Not only negative A but on the contrary B

Not only does she not support this plan, but, on the contrary, (she?) tries to prevent it. Not only will the change not deteriorate the conditions, but, on the contrary, (it?) will improve them. Not ...
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with not a lot of choices

a. He owned a small bookshop with not a lot of choices. b. I travelled in Europe with not a lot of money. c. With not a lot of time left, I had to do things rapidly. Are the above sentences ...
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Negation of sentences containing modals and auxiliary verbs

This question drew my attention to something that seems perfectly clear to native English speakers, but leaves English learners bewildered. When you negate a sentence containing a modal or an ...
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Why do positives and negatives not usually co-exist?

If I drink half of a bottle of water, there's half of a bottle of water and there's not half of a bottle of water. However, why is the negative sentence not usually used? Is it a wrong sentence?
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How can I use “can” with negation words (such as “can … not”) instead of antonym verbs? [duplicate]

In the following sentence: They can disagree. what I want to say is that the subject, they, can possibly reach a state when they no longer agree. Of course, it can be the opposite - they can agree ...
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anyone who has not done their homework

a. Anyone who has not done their homework can't watch television tonight. b. Anyone who has not done their homework will not be allowed to watch television tonight. c. Anyone who has not done their ...
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a lot to eat/much to eat

a. All we have is two cans of beans. It isn't a lot to eat, but it will have to do for now. b. All we have is two cans of beans. It isn't much to eat, but it will have to do for now. Are the above ...
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What does “can never” mean

I am a English learner from Poland. One thing confuses me often while reading in English. It is the sentence "can never". Does that sentence mean that one will never be/do something 100 ...
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2answers
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'I was trying to eat hot food, but I didn't eat the hot food'

I was trying to eat hot food, but I didn't eat the hot food Isn't it contradictory? There are 'eat' and 'didn't eat' in this structure. However, in informal, I think people use this kind of ...
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He is not, like his father, optimistic about future

The sentence goes, "He is not, like his father, optimistic about future." It means he is not optimistic but his father is. But I dont' understand the logic of negation here because it says'...
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Simple “Yes” or “No” answers to “Is there no …?” questions. What do the answers really mean?

My new job requires me to deal with regulatory document and checklists containing "Is there no ......?" questions with Yes/No answer sections, and I wonder how to read what the Yes/No really ...
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I don't think you should have done that

a. I don't think you should have done that. b. I think you shouldn't have done that. c. I don't think you should go there. d. I think you shouldn't go there. Is there any difference between the ...
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How to handle con­di­tional clauses where it’s un­known whether the pro­ta­sis’s con­di­tion ac­tu­ally got ful­filled or not?

I have a ques­tion re­gard­ing con­di­tional sen­tences, as far I know the “third con­di­tional” is used when we’re talk­ing about a con­di­tion from the past that never ac­tu­ally hap­pened af­ter ...
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have no experience

a. Each of these drinks have no calories. b. Each of these workers have no experience. Are the sentences grammatically correct? Are they natural?
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After “could not”, is it “help but notice” or “help noticing”?

I have read and heard examples of both "could not help but notice" and "could not help noticing". Hello, penguins. I could not help but notice that you have a hat that magically ...
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Is that correct? James Wilson's Sentence in House MD TV Sereies

I am asking about the sentence this guy (James Wilson, House's best friend) says at 7:00 in this video. The transcription is: Okay, maybe. But he's our friend and this is his one chance to not be ...
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Why is “gusting” not the opposite of “disgusting”?

The prefix dis often makes a word negative. It is a negative prefix. For example: courage and discourage, the latter is the opposite of the former. Continue and discontinue, honest and dishonest and ...
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Negative form of “it is all about” + NOUN

Consider the following sentence: It is all about being lucky. meaning that being lucky is the main point, reason or factor. How would you put it in a negative form? It is NOT all about being lucky. ...
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Contractions on a negative sentence in present

More specifically I'm talking about the present simple and continuous, for example I know you can answer a yes/no question whose answer is negative like this: Is he in college? No, he isn't. Are ...
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Scope and usage of 'not' in a sentence

I intend to say in the following statement that good people should pledge not to be silent and the righteous should win over the non-deserving. I'm not sure if the 'not' is being extended to the ...
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Which is correct: “A that involves neither X, Y nor Z” or “A that does neither involve X, Y nor Z” or both?

I wonder which is correct in the standard varities of English: "A problem that involves neither you, (nor) me, nor him" or "A problem that does neither involve you, (nor) me, nor him&...
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There's no wrong answer. double negative

A dictionary says wrong means not right, then does there's no wrong answer have a double negative?
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Can I change “Is there” to negative?

I have not seen the case of using the following expressions. Is/Are there no problem? Is/Aren't there (any) problems? Is it possible to make "Is there" a negative question? There are too ...
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Does “nor” replace “not even”?

I have recently learned to use nor in sentences and according to me, as I personally evaluated, nor replaces not even in many situations. For example: He does not like studying, nor does he bring ...
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don't like all of your friends

Could one ever use a) I don't like all of your friends. instead of b) I dislike all of your friends. (I don't like any of them) ? Could one use c) She can't stand all of the shows I like. instead of d)...
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Why is, “If I don't use the microphone, nobody will hear me,” not considered a double negative

I understand that you can't have a double negative...but also, 'anyone/anybody' in this sentence wouldn't make sense: If I don't use the microphone, nobody will hear me So why is this not considered ...
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What should be used here? Me too or me either?

Seems like people have previously asked somehow a question like this, but the answers to me don't seem convincing because the source of the answer is not mentioned that's why I've decided to ask it ...
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“If you don't think that X, which I personally do…” Does the speaker think X or not think X?

I am puzzled with a meaning of a sentence with negation and referring to it. When someone says: If you don't think that our case has been won, which I, personally do, then... Is the person saying ...
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Confused by partial negation

Live bacteria are not present in all yogurt brands. Does it mean "live bacteria are present in some yogurt brands, but not all" or "there is no bacterium in any yogurt brand"? Or ...
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What's the correct order of negated adjectives?

Do adjectives with "not" go before or after the noun they refer to? For example: A not funny guy A guy not funny Which of these is correct?
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About to/Not about to + Will be about to

As I understand I am going to do it = I have an intention of doing it Although we don't know whether it will happen in 5 seconds or in 3 months. I am about to do it = Very very soon I will do it This ...
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Of course I will to a negative sentence

If you say to someone "I hope you won't stop checking in on her" And this person answers "Of course I will" Does it mean "Of course I won't stop" ?
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Usage of the word “don't” + “Substitute”

"It's important to support business, but meal deal vouchers don't substitute for effective public health messaging and measures" The above excerpt is from a political advert and was ...
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I will call somebody else, not neither him nor you

I have a sentence I will call neither you nor him I guess it means I won't call neither you nor him Out of it it's not clear whether I will call anyone at all but I want to say that I will call but ...

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