Negation

Updated: Sep 7, 2020


Negative forms (negative adjectives, negative adverbs and negative pronouns) are used to turn an affirmative statement or question into a negative statement or question.


The statement: 'I drink milk' is an affirmative statement.

The statement: 'I don't drink milk' is a negative statement.


There is a variety of expressions used to express negation.



ne...pas


This is the most used negative form. It corresponds to "not" in English.


Check these examples:


Je ne suis pas content. I am not happy.

Elle n'a pas de chien. She does not have a dog.

Tu n'as pas fait tes devoirs. You have not done your homework.


Note:

- ne and pas go around the conjugated verb or around the auxiliary in compound tenses.

- ne becomes n' when the next word starts with a vowel.

- indefinite articles (un, une, des) or partitive articles (du, de la, de l', des) become de or d'.



ne...jamais


This negative form corresponds to "never" or "not ever" in English. It is used the same way as "ne...pas", where "jamais" replaces "pas".


Check these examples:

Je ne vais jamais au cinéma. I never go to the cinéma.

Nous ne mangeons jamais de viande. We never eat meat.

Il n'a jamais lu ce livre. He has never read this book.


Note:

- ne and jamais go around the conjugated verb or around the auxiliary in compound tenses.

- ne becomes n' when the next word starts with a vowel.

- indefinite articles (un, une, des) or partitive articles (du, de la, de l', des) become de or d'.



ne...plus


This negative form corresponds to "not anymore" or "no longer" in English. It is used the same way as "ne...pas", where "plus" replaces "pas".


Check these examples:

Elle ne mange plus de poisson. She no longer eats fish.

Je ne peux plus le supporter. I can't stand him anymore.

Ils n'ont plus travaillé après l'accident. They didn't work again after the accident.


Note:

- ne and plus go around the conjugated verb or around the auxiliary in a compound tenses.

- ne becomes n' when the next word starts with a vowel.

- indefinite articles (un, une, des) or partitive articles (du, de la, de l', des) become de or d'.



ne...aucun(e)