Negative forms

Posted by Manjusha Filed in Practical English Usage

When there is more than one auxiliary verb, we make negative forms by putting not after the first auxiliary verb.

When be (is, am, are, was, were) is the main verb, we make negative forms by putting not after be.

When have is the main verb, we make negative forms by putting do not before have.

When there are no auxiliary verbs, we make negative forms by putting do not before the verb. After do not we use the infinitive without to.

Before infinitives and -ing forms, we use not to make negative forms.

Negative questions

Negative questions can be contracted or uncontracted. Contracted negative questions have the word order auxiliary verb + n’t + subject. They are less formal.

Uncontracted negative questions have the word order auxiliary verb + subject + not .

See also

Near
Nearest and next
Negative forms
Neither
Neither, nor and not either
No, none and not a/any
No matter
North, northern, south, southern
not only ... but also...
Using not only...but also

Search the Dictionary of Practical English Usage

A    |     B    |     C    |     D    |     E    |     F    |     G    |     H    |     I    |     

J    |     K    |     L    |     M    |     N    |     O    |     P    |     Q    |     R    |     

S    |     T    |     U    |     V    |     W    |     X    |     Y    |     Z

Show Full Index