Questions tagged [negation]

否定. Questions regarding the various words, particles, inflections, and constructions employed to negate a word or sentence from its positive form.

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6
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3answers
214 views

Adverbial transformation in verbs

I've seen many texts where verbs ends in く and this remind me the transformation from i-adj to adverbs where we simply change い --> く This is the sentence I'm struggling with: ミトがいらないなら買う必要なくね? I ...
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2answers
234 views

Most natural way to use the negative with つもり

Which is more natural to say in Japanese? Do they have slightly different connotations? 食べないつもりです。 (I intend not to eat.) 食べるつもりはないです。 (I do not intend to eat.) Also, are those translations fairly ...
6
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4answers
383 views

What is the correct interpretation of Aの本はBの本のように多くない?

~ほど~ない This grammar always ends with ない. For example, Aの本はBの本ほど多くない。 A's books are not as many as B's books. ~のように~ I always see this grammar in positive form. For example, Aの本はBの本のように多い。...
6
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1answer
179 views

Is 飲んだことがない identical to 飲まなかったことがある?

When two or more verbs (or adjectives) can be "bounded" (either loosely or tightly) as the following case, 食べていない。 買ってくれて欲しい。 したことがある。 does the negated position matter? More precisely, for example: ...
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2answers
433 views

Is 〜でなかった valid?

I have from the entry for 実際 of ウィズダム英和・和英辞書 the following sentence: 彼は医者だと言ったが実際はそうでなかった。 He said he was a doctor, but in fact he was not. From what I understand, the 「〜でなかった」 here is ...
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2answers
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What does …なくはない mean?

Initial searching in Japanese-Japanese dictionaries seem to suggest that it's along the lines of "has a bit of ..., so saying otherwise would be wrong", "more so than not", and is a synonym to ...
6
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1answer
375 views

When did 全然 get restricted to the negative?

全然 means "completely" in Chinese, and also in Classical Chinese. Why does 全然 only go with negative conjugations in Japanese? My teacher also says that you cannot say とても with negative things in ...
6
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2answers
230 views

不被下候: When was it common, and what were the rules?

In a shrine graffito written in 1559, two carpenters complain: 其時座主ハ大キナコスデオチヤリテ一度モ焼酎ヲ不被下候 'At that time, the high priest (stingy bugger!) gave us not even a drop of shochu to drink.' The form ...
6
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1answer
188 views

Is there a negative form for adverbs?

So if you want to say you walk quickly you say 早く歩く. Great. Now, suppose you want to say you walk unquickly. Could you potentially say something like 早くなく歩く? The obvious answer is you simply say you ...
6
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1answer
437 views

The meaning of しないでもなかった

彼の性格が読めてきたような気がしないでもなかった しない is a negative conjugation of する And from what I understand でもなかった is the equivalent of "was not" So it's a double denial? How does this work?
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1answer
152 views

What is the nuance of わかりゃあせん vs regular わかりません?

I heard the following phrase spoken in Osaka: そう泣いてばかりではわかりゃあせん Is it regional? Does it have any nuance to it? Is it a more regular pattern or just an intonation of this particular phrase? (...
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1answer
2k views

meaning of 歩けなくなっちゃって

I'm trying to translate 駅から歩けなくなっちゃって. I don't really speak Japanese but this is what I got so far: なっちゃって apparently means having done something against one's intention 駅から is "from the station" ...
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3answers
19k views

How to say “no thank you, I don't want / need it”?

Sometimes I am offered something but because I'm just a beginner I don't know what verb they used. I know the proper way to say "no" is to answer with the negative form of the verb the other person ...
5
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2answers
157 views

Is なくなく an emphatic negative expression (e.g. in 力なくなく)?

I guess it is an archaic form... Sometimes I hear an adverbial phrase 力{ちから}なくなく used in context when someone resigned something after an effort. Let's say a warrior was pursuing another one to no ...
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1answer
353 views

Conjugate る-ending verbs into negative form

Sorry if this question has been asked before. I tried to look around for an answer but couldn't find it. I just want to state before that my question is not regarding the verb ある or verbs with kanji +...
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2answers
936 views

Trouble parsing sentence with どうしても and a triple negative

I am using an easy-to-read VN to get some grammar experience. The following sentence has been troubling me for about half an hour now: 生徒会に入ったら、どうしてもこっちを着なきゃだめなの? The topic of 着る is 制服 if that ...
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1answer
173 views

Using ~なくなった vs. ~ない

情報の真偽を確かめるまで帰れなくなった What does なくなった add? I'm parsing なくなった as なくなる or the negative form of なる to become. So loosely it sounds like, "you will lose the ability to leave"。 情報の真偽を確かめるまで帰れない Is this ...
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1answer
771 views

Meaning and usage of suffix -まい

According to the WWWJDIC, the verbal suffix まい can mean: (1) probably isn't (doesn't, won't, etc.) (2) don't (doesn't) intend to; intend not to (3) must not; (when used in an imperative ...
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1answer
285 views

What is the approximate ratio of ways to express agreement vs. disagreement?

Contrary to various urban legends, Japanese does have a word for "No", however, it appears it's extremely rare to hear it used directly, given the connotation of impoliteness of "iie". Even factual ...
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1answer
189 views

Why is しっていません a mistake ? [duplicate]

I was told many years ago by a native Japanese speaker that saying 知っていません instead of 知りません was a huge mistake. I would like to know the reason of this fact. Is it because the meaning of the verb 知る ...
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2answers
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せず - What does it come from?

気にするまいと思っても、気にせずにはいられない。 In above sentence, I guess せず means しない, but what is the original form, and how does it become せず?
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2answers
635 views

Sentence ending じゃよ

Maruko:「おとおさんはちょっとは遠慮しながら食べてよ」 Dad:「いいんじゃよ」 Grandad:「そうじゃよ、みんなたくさん食べればいいよ」 Maruko is telling dad to hold back a bit while eating (because the food is a way to thank her grandad). I don't ...
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3answers
619 views

Which is stronger, ないでほしい or てほしくない

I've asked this to several native Japanese speakers, but I've gotten varied responses so I thought I'd put it out here. Which feels 'stronger', ie more forceful: (1) そこに行かないでほしい (2) そこに行ってほしくない To ...
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2answers
224 views

How to interpret 全然 + positive adjective + とは思わない

As explained in this question, I know that 全然 used with positive adjective means "completely, entirely", while when it is used with negative adjectives/verbs it means "not at all, absolutely not". ...
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1answer
340 views

Origin of ません (-masen)?

I understand that polite forms like yomimasu are actually (or originated as) infinitive yomi + auxiliary verb masu in its plain non-past form. Then past form yomimashita is just infinitive yomi + ...
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1answer
168 views

Uncertain about なにも

I encountered a short sentence that I'm having trouble understanding completely. なにも遊ぶのは人間だけじゃない。 The context is, a young girl is playing with a dog for the first time. I'm pretty sure I at least ...
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2answers
164 views

When I ask a simple question should I ask it in negative form?

My textbook is prompting me to ask questions: "Don't you want to see a movie?" eiga o mimasen ka? "Don't you want to eat dinner?" bangohan o tabemasen ka? I'm wondering if I should be ...
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1answer
146 views

Explaining “向けてじゃないよ”

I watched a song "あの娘シークレット", and there are these lyrics: 僕に初めて 見せるような表情 でもそれは僕に向けてじゃないよ (Youtube link with timestamp: https://youtu.be/sgdPlDG1-8k?t=106) My question: I have never seen a じゃない ...
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1answer
120 views

What's difference between うるさくないでください and うるさくしないでください

Don't both of them mean "Please do not be loud"? What's the うるさく? Is it うるさい and change い into く to make it a noun? Could you guys suggest the topic that I can look into and study more about them? ...
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1answer
129 views

Logic behind ~く form in the negative form of i-adjectives

I'm trying to logically grasp why い-adjectives switch to the ~く form in order to form a negative. For example: 痛い   (is painful) 痛くない (is not painful) I understand ない to be an adjective. い ...
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1answer
634 views

Why does 不甲斐{ふがい}ない mean “worthless” while 甲斐{かい} means “worth”?

JMdict: 不甲斐{ふがい}ない: disappointing; weak-minded; spiritless; cowardly; worthless; pusillanimous; feckless; faint-hearted; shiftless; tame; timid 甲斐{かい}: effect; result; worth; use; avail ...
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1answer
4k views

difference between -なくて and -ないで [duplicate]

When I encounter these two, I usually don't have a problem understanding their meaning in the given context. Still, I don't really know what makes them different from each other xD -なくて still is ...
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3answers
930 views

How can I use できない and しまう? I'd like to apologize for not being able to do something

I'd like to apologize for not being able to do xyz. Rather than just saying 「すみません、何々ができません。」, could I say something like: 何々ができなくてしまいます。 Or is しまう always used with a positive te-form verb?
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1answer
155 views

Meaning of 噂を聞かないと思ったら

In a manga, two American boxers are talking about a guy they used to know who now lives in Japan. Boxer A: あのブルドッグがリングに上がるって本当かよ。 Boxer B: ああ。ここ数年噂を聞かねェと思ったらボクサーになってたんだよ。日本でな。 I think 数年〜...
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1answer
273 views

understanding the meaning of わけはない

From the Progressive Japanese-English dictionary: 彼を操縦するなどわけはない I can easily twist [wind] him around [((英)) round] my little finger. Can you please tell me what わけはない means in this sentence? ...
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1answer
414 views

Which is the proper way to say “I don't X”?

I thought if you say "I don't smoke cigarettes" that would be "[Watashi wa] tabako o suimasen". But I just saw something that said it would be "tabako wa suimasen". Are they interchangable? Is there a ...
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1answer
86 views

みぜんけい or れんようけい form for ない conjugation of i-adjectives

It appears that nai conjugates onto the renyoukei (.ku) form of i-adjectives instead of the mizenkei (.karo) form, as it does with verbs. Is this correct? Every source I've found shows the .kunai ...
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1answer
796 views

How to say a double negative in Japanese

My Japanese friend asked me whether I believe in an afterlife. I wanted to say, "I don't believe, but also I don't not believe." My point is that while I do not believe, I like to keep an open mind. ...
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2answers
166 views

に越したことはない vs に越したことないじゃない

I would appreciate help with the following sentence (which is spoken by a rightfully angry girl). よしゅうふくしゅうをしておくにこしたことないじゃない! I know that にこしたことはない is an expression that means "there's nothing ...
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1answer
118 views

unclear target of negation of にならない

嘘をつけ。本物のブロンドはもっとナチュラルだし、そんな不自然な金色にはならん。 that's a lie, real blonde (hair) is more natural, THAT kind of of golden (hair colour) totally cannot be (real)? ...にはならん = not 本物/ナチュラル at all? The golden ...
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1answer
111 views

嫌い in “私のことを好きか嫌いか”, etc

I often encounter phrases like this in anime & manga, but from what I understand they are quite common in real life too. A girl asks a boy "do you like/love me? no? so then you hate me?". To me ...
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1answer
109 views

Translation of すべて as “none of”

Here's a sentence I said to a friend today: 「すべての授業{じゅぎょう}を選{えら}びません。」 I wanted to say "I don't choose all my courses." However, my friend understood my sentence as "I choose none of my course. / I ...
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2answers
236 views

Negative present endings translated as past tense

I've seen certain translations where I feels like there's a shift in the tenses. Ex: なぜ早く言わない!? translated to "Why didn't you say so sooner!?" In fact, I've experienced a lot of cases where a ...
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1answer
124 views

未然形 of である and 連用形 of だ

When I checked the entry of 助動詞 「だ」 in the dictionary, I found the following example sentence: 「学生は怠けるべきではない」 Does the fact that で is in bold mean that で in ではない is actually the 連用形 of 「だ」? But ...
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1answer
129 views

言え used both as negative and positive imperative

In the following examples the same imperative form is used for two opposite meanings: 「ウンと言え!」 "say yes!" "agree!" 「バカを言え!」 "don't talk stupid!" Clear from context, but I wonder what do Japanese ...
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0answers
207 views

Questions about 「とは」and 「思わなんだ」 [duplicate]

Here is the sentence relating to the questions. こんなうすぎたねえ車の中で また おあいできるとは思わなんだぜ。 1) Why is the 「は」included with the particle 「と」? I think only 「と」would be enough to be used with the verb 「思う」. Or ...
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1answer
186 views

ではない in Relative Clauses

I have read in several sources that it is grammatically incorrect to use は (topic particle) in relative clauses. However, I am almost certain that I have seen constructions like the following: ...
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1answer
268 views

Conjugation of negative auxiliary 〜ぬ

〜ない functions the same way as an adjective, and so it can be conjugated to 〜なかった, 〜なくて, and so on. As far as I can tell, this is not case for 〜ぬ. Does it function as a standalone suffix, or is it able ...
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2answers
116 views

Do na-adjectives have an attributive negative form?

Assuming present tense, we can use i-adjectives in an attributive context both in the affirmative form: 高い 椅子 が あります - there's an expensive chair And in the negative form: 高くない 椅子 が あります - ...
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1answer
126 views

How do these negations differ? (Plain negative vs. potential negative)

本当よ響ちゃん。私たちは帰らなかったんじゃなくて帰れなかったの 響 - Hibiki (name of a character) So the storie goes like Hibiki goes in search of her friends who haven't come back in 2 weeks. When she founds them she asks them "...