For example:





Are they the same? If yes, which are more common? Basically what are the differences?

  • They are certainly not the same as currently the first has two negations and the second only one... Maybe you want to make the first あるんじゃなかった, or the second なかったんじゃない. – Earthliŋ Nov 13 '16 at 12:06
  • It doesn't sound natural if you use 昨日 and the present form together. I think it should be 昨日、授業がなっかたんじゃないの – dabisu Nov 13 '16 at 12:08
  • 2
    @ dabisu 昨日、授業があるんじゃなかったの? is unnatural as you noticed. Your second sentence is natural. – Yuuichi Tam Nov 13 '16 at 12:40
  • Then again that does not answer my initial question. The "present + のじゃなかった "and "past + のじゃない." – Dekiru Nov 13 '16 at 12:54
  • In that case get rid of the 昨日 at the front... "we do have a class yesterday don't we?" does not seem to make much sense in English. – virmaior Nov 13 '16 at 13:25

I think じゃない and じゃなかった are the same for this case.

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授業があるんじゃなかったの? means "you would attend the class, wouldn't you?", in other words, it expresses that you thought someone was going to have the class but have found something paradoxical and suspect that.

授業が あったんじゃないの{HLLLLLHLH}? or …じゃなぃい{LLHLH}? means that you though someone had the class but have found something paradoxical and suspect that.

授業があったん じゃないの{HHHLH}? or …じゃない{LLLH}? means that you guess someone had a class.

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  • @Dekiru The red lines denote pitch. Lines on top are higher pitch. Lines below are lower pitch. btw if you want people to help you, you might consider friendlier responses than 全然分かりません. – user3856370 Nov 13 '16 at 16:18
  • @user4092 I deeply apologize for the rude behavior. I didn't know "全然分かりません" is a rude phrase. – Dekiru Nov 14 '16 at 0:12
  • @Dekiru I personally find it honest, not rude. As for the notation, I should have considered what's shared and what's not. – user4092 Nov 14 '16 at 4:13

They have a few differences.

  1. 授業があるんじゃなかった? - You have a class, do you not?
  2. 授業があったんじゃなかった? - You had a class, did you not?

The first sentence is the present form. The second sentence is the past form.

  1. 授業があるんじゃない? - You will have a class, will you not?
  2. 授業があったんじゃない? - You had a class, did you not?

The third sentence is the future form. I think the fourth sentence has the same meaning as the second sentence.

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Present+の+じゃないの? means things in the future. I think Present+の+じゃなかったの? is a bit complicated. In my opinion, 今日、授業があるんじゃなかったの? can be both used in thing in the future and in the last hour. However if you want to say things in the future clearly, you should say Present+の+じゃないの?.

And Present+の+じゃなかったの? is used in things in the past. For example, 昨日、学校に行くんじゃなかったの? It means "Weren't you going to the school yesterday?. And 昨日、学校に行ったんじゃなかったの? means "Didn't you go to the school yesterday?"

I thought first 昨日、授業があるんじゃなかったの? is a bit unnatural but it may mean 昨日、授業がある予定じゃなかったの?.

And past+の+じゃなかったの? and past+の+じゃないの? means thing in the past and I don't feel their difference.

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  • Wait let me summarize it. So のじゃない is when you want clarify your expectations of an incident(in questions). If that incident is in the present(or future) then you use present tense "今、授業がないんじゃない?". If the incident is in the past (the class I refer to ends 2 hours ago) then you use past tense "授業があったんじゃない?" So how does じゃなかった appear here? I guess it is difficult for me to understand the meaning through translations because Japanese requires different approach of framework. – Dekiru Nov 14 '16 at 5:46
  • "今、授業がないんじゃない?" said about "now", not "future". "授業がないんじゃない?" said about things in the future. And 授業があったんじゃなかった? means things in the past as I said. – Yuuichi Tam Nov 14 '16 at 6:15
  • If present + の + じゃなかった can refer to a thing in the past, and past + の + じゃない can also do so... Why 昨日 is valid for the latter but not the former? – Dekiru Nov 14 '16 at 10:15
  • Can you understand the difference between "昨日、学校に行くんじゃなかったの?" and "昨日、学校に行ったんじゃなかったの?". And you want to know about the question of this, don't you? If these sentence are positive sentences, the meaning changes. And the reason why I add 昨日 is because I wanted to make sure that it is a thing in the past. – Yuuichi Tam Nov 14 '16 at 10:42
  • I'm sorry but both sound the same to me. – Dekiru Nov 14 '16 at 10:54

There is a slight difference.

授業がある is non-past. So it is either future or present. From the context it is probably future. So it means "there will be a class".

授業があった is past. So it means "there was a class"

んじゃなかった is the contraction of のではなかった.
んじゃない is the contraction of のではない.
Both work as tag questions.

のではなかった is in the past tense. So it is asking for confirmation about something that was defined in the past.
のではない is in the present tense. So it is asking for confirmation about something that should be defined in the present.

So the translation becomes:

I thought there would be a class, wouldn't there?

I thought there was a class, wasn't there?

I think there will be a class, won't there?

I think there was a class, wasn't there?

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のじゃない means that you are expecting something and are trying to clarify its validity.

のじゃなかった means that you are expecting something but then that expectation is challenged by a contradiction, and then you are trying to clarify its validity.

授業があるんじゃない? (i think : isn't it that there is class?)

You said to a friend who tried to leave the classroom when you are expecting that there is a class.

授業があるんじゃなかった? (I thought : Isn't it that there is class?)

You said to a friend who told you that the teacher is absent. Here, when you said it, your expectation has changed. This method of clarifying your expectation carries the nuance that you realized your expectation is more likely to be false.

When past tense is used "あった, なかった" it implies that the the event you are expecting has occurred before you are trying to clarify it (not on the same timeline either.)

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