This is specifically for い-adjectives, as な-adjectives work this way.
For example, when I want to say something is not delicious I'd usually say おいしくない.
Would it be possible to use おいしい じゃありません and would it mean the same thing?

  • Short answer: no you cannot do that. Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 17:56
  • おいしいじゃありません(?) might mean "It's delicious, isn't it?"
    – Jimmy Yang
    Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 18:26

1 Answer 1


It would mean the same thing, but wrong in terms of grammar.


  • Question おいしくない? (Delicious, isn't it?) valid
  • Statement おいしくない (Not delicious) valid


  • Question おいしいじゃありません? (Delicious, isn't it?) valid
  • Statement おいしいじゃありません Not valid

The question "おいしいじゃありません?" is a unique edge case, and you might never use it in your life.

The statement "おいしいじゃありません" looks/sounds wrong although the message is clear you are not enjoying that meal.

Possible statements to deny おいしい:

  • おいしありません

Following works too:

  • おいしいごはんではありません
  • おいしいとは思いません


The above are basics. Hate to add complexity but there is yet another edge case where one is happy with the meal and say:

  • Statement おいしいじゃありません (Isn't this delicious)
  • Statement おいしいじゃありませんこと (Isn't this delicious)

This carries the same logic as the question, but is not a question. It's somewhere between a rhetorical question and a firm statement. These are advanced expressions which may be used with enough context and correct pronunciation.

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