Same word for "no" and "not"

Whodunit

Senior Member
Deutschland ~ Deutsch/Sächsisch
This thread in the Portuguese forum inspired me to open a new thread.

Do you use the same word for "no" and "not" in your language? Example sentences:

Do you want to go home? - No. I do not want to go home.

In German, we use "nein" for "no" and "nicht" for "not," so it's just like in English. However, in some Romance languages, they have the same word for "no" and "not."


:warn: Note: I'm not referring to the other meaning of "no" as in "I have no siblings."
 
  • robbie_SWE

    Senior Member
    Trilingual: Swedish, Romanian & English
    In Romanian we use the same word "nu" to say no/not. In your example it would look like this:

    Vrei să mergia acasă? Nu, (eu) nu vroiam să merg acasă.

    In Swedish, on the other hand, is quite similar to German and English.

    Vill du gå hem? Nej, jag vill inte gå hem.

    :) robbie
     

    Chazzwozzer

    Senior Member
    Turkish
    In Turkish, we use different words for no and not.
    hayır(yok is used colloquially as well): no
    değil: not

    Hayır, bu benim bilgisayarım değil.
    No, this is not my computer.

    However, we use -ma/-me/-mi/-mı(vowel harmony, you know)in the verbs. So, değil is omitted.

    Eve gitmek istiyor musun? Hayır, eve gitmek istemiyorum.
    Do you want to go home? No, I do not want to go home.
     

    Etcetera

    Senior Member
    Russian, Russia (St Petersburg)
    Hi Whodunit! :)
    http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=250501Do you want to go home? - No. I do not want to go home.
    In Russian, we too have two words - не and нет. The example sentence can be translated like that:
    - Ты хочешь домой?
    - Нет. Я не хочу идти домой.
    So, in this sentence, нет means the same as the English 'no', and не - the same as 'not'.
     

    Cecilio

    Senior Member
    Spanish, Valencian/Catalan
    Hello everybody. In Spanish we only have one word, and a very short one: "no". Example:

    -¿Tienes hermanos? - No, no tengo hermanos.
     

    Tekeli-li! Tekeli-li!

    Member
    Czech | Czech Republic
    In Czech:
    Chceš (jít) domů? - Ne, nechci.

    As you can see, there is only one "ne", which takes the form of a prefix when it modifies verbs. On the other hand:

    I want a red car, and not a yellow one. - Chci červené auto a ne žluté.

    In speech, the stand-alone "ne" is usually a bit more emphatic than the affixed kind.
     

    Mutichou

    Senior Member
    France - French
    In French, we say "non" for "no" and "ne...pas" for "not".
    In Italian, "no" is "no" and "not" is "non".
    And in Spanish, "no" means both.
     

    cherine

    Moderator
    Arabic (Egypt).
    Do you use the same word for "no" and "not" in your language? Example sentences:
    Do you want to go home? - No. I do not want to go home.
    My first reaction was "no" :D as I had in mind the word laysa ليس then after reading your sentence, I changed my mind.
    YES, we can use the same word "laa" لا for both no and not.
    hal turiidu 'dh-dhihaaba lilbayti ? -laa, laa uridu 'dh-dhihaaba lilbayti.
    هل تريد الذهاب للبيت ؟ - لا، لا أريد الذهاب للبيت.
     

    Hakro

    Senior Member
    Finnish - Finland
    Finnish:
    no = ei
    not = depends on the subject of the sentence:
    - No, I do not want to go home = Ei, minä en halua mennä kotiin
    - No, he does not want to go home = Ei, hän ei halua mennä kotiin
    So in Finnish 'no' and 'not' are the same word only in the third person singular.
     

    Ilmo

    Member Emeritus
    Finnish:
    no = ei
    not = depends on the subject of the sentence:
    - No, I do not want to go home = Ei, minä en halua mennä kotiin
    - No, he does not want to go home = Ei, hän ei halua mennä kotiin
    So in Finnish 'no' and 'not' are the same word only in the third person singular.
    Actually in Finnish there is a "negation verb" that is, however, conjugated only in the present tense.
    The "normal" negation word "ei" is the form 3rd person singular.
    When the negation word is used, the ordinary verb remainsw in the same form despite of conjugation.
    Example, the present tense of "to be" (=olla):
    (minä) olen
    (sinä) olet
    hän on
    (me) olemme
    (te) olette
    (he) ovat
    And negated (I'm not)
    (minä) en ole
    (sinä) et ole
    hän ei ole
    (me) emme ole
    (te) ette ole
    he eivät ole
    The pronouns in parenthesis are not nocessary to utter.
     

    linguist786

    Senior Member
    English, Gujarati & Urdu
    In Urdu/Hindi, it's the same word - "nahiiN" :)

    Kyaa tum ko ghar par jaanaa hai? NahiiN, mujhe nahiiN jaanaa hai.
    Do you have to go home? No, I do not have to go.

    In Gujarati, it's not the same word :)
    (no = naa. not = nathii)

    (using example above)
    Tanay gharay javaanu Che? Naa, manay nathii javaanu.
    Do you have to go home? No, I do not have to go.
     

    Etcetera

    Senior Member
    Russian, Russia (St Petersburg)
    In Piedmontese (which is a Romance language) there are two different words: stands for 'no', and nen for 'not'

    For example: Nó, i sai nen. - No, I do not know.
     

    J.F. de TROYES

    Senior Member
    francais-France
    In Chinese there is no difference between "no" and "not" : the same word " " ( bu4 ) may be used either on its own or in front of a verb :
    " , 谢谢 " ( Bu4, xie4xie ) - No, thank you.
    " 我 家 " ( Wo3 bu2 yao4 hui2 jia1 )- I don't want to go back home.

    But " " can't be used with some words, chiefly with " 有 " (to have, there is ) and "not" is translated in this case by "没" (meï):

    "有茶" (you3 cha2) - There is tea.
    " 咖啡 " (meï2 you3 ka1fei1)- There's no coffee.


     

    J.F. de TROYES

    Senior Member
    francais-France
    I'd like to go from the Far East to South America ,in Quechua :
    "NO" is " MANA" and "NOT" is "MANA + -CHU" like "NE + PAS" in French.
    "Rikuni" means "I know"; " Mana rikunichu" means " I don't know".
     

    Whodunit

    Senior Member
    Deutschland ~ Deutsch/Sächsisch
    In Chinese there is no difference between "no" and "not" : the same word " 不 " ( bu4 ) may be used either on its own or in front of a verb :
    " 不 , 谢谢 " ( Bu4, xie4xie ) - No, thank you.
    " 我不要回家 " ( Wo3 bu2 yao4 hui2 jia1 )- I don't want to go back home.
    I just checked, and you seem to be correct that 不 can be read as both bu2 and bu4. So, there's a difference in pronunciation to differentiate "no" (bu4) and "not" (bu2), but the character (不) is the same, right?
     

    avalon2004

    Senior Member
    UK- English/Spanish
    The words are different in Greek. The best way to demonstrate this is in the following examples:

    I'm not happy - Δεν είμαι ευτυχισμένος
    Not me - Όχι εγώ
    No, I don't want to go- Όχι, δε θέλω να πάω
    Let's not speak about it- Ας μη μιλήσουμε γι΄αυτό
    Don't tell her!- Μην της το πεις!
    No! (stop! watch out! don't! etc..)- Μη!

    In general, δεν is used with verbs, όχι is usually "no" and μην is used with imperatives and the subjunctive.
     

    MingRaymond

    Senior Member
    HK Cantonese
    I just checked, and you seem to be correct that 不 can be read as both bu2 and bu4. So, there's a difference in pronunciation to differentiate "no" (bu4) and "not" (bu2), but the character (不) is the same, right?
    Hello Whodunit,

    In Mandarin, when 不 is followed by a character which is tone4, the originally tone (tone4) will become tone2, so 不要 is bu2yao4, but 不好 bu4hao3.

    Ming
     

    Thomas1

    Senior Member
    polszczyzna warszawska
    But it's "bu4, xie4 xie4," (不,谢谢) too. Three times tone 4?
    I think it's because there's a comma between 不 and 谢 so this gives you a pause in speach and you pronounce 不 with tone 4. If there's no any interruption you pronunce it with tone 2.


    As for your original question in Polish we would use one word for two English--nie.

    Tom
     

    MingRaymond

    Senior Member
    HK Cantonese
    I think it's because there's a comma between 不 and 谢 so this gives you a pause in speach and you pronounce 不 with tone 4. If there's no any interruption you pronunce it with tone 2.



    Tom
    You are right. And this changing tone 4 to tone 2 rule is also applied in the word 一 (one), so 一個(yi2ge4)。The changing tone of 不 and 一 is called 一不變調. :)
     

    Namakemono

    Senior Member
    Español, gallego (España)
    Japanese has many words for "no", but they're all used as an isolated negation.
    Ie ni kaerimasu ka? Iie, kaerimasen.
    (Will you go home? No, I will not.)
    As you can see, in Japanese the negative is in the verb, so they don't need a separate word like "not" in English or "ikke" in Danish.
     

    Whodunit

    Senior Member
    Deutschland ~ Deutsch/Sächsisch
    Japanese has many words for "no", but they're all used as an isolated negation.
    Ie ni kaerimasu ka? Iie, kaerimasen.
    (Will you go home? No, I will not.)
    As you can see, in Japanese the negative is in the verb, so they don't need a separate word like "not" in English or "ikke" in Danish.
    I think, one could generalized it like this:

    no = iie (いいえ)
    not = masen (ません)
     

    Namakemono

    Senior Member
    Español, gallego (España)
    Yeah, but then again, masen is only present formal. In informal verbs you would say nai/nakatta. I think we should consider it part of the verb rather than a word on itself.
     

    ronanpoirier

    Senior Member
    Brazil - Portuguese
    In Hungarian, I think there is just one word for both "no" and "not": nem.

    But I see a lot the word "ne" but it is used with Imperative Tense always when I see it.
     

    apmoy70

    Senior Member
    Greek
    In Greek we use different words:

    No: «Όχι» [ˈɔ.çi]. It derives from the crasis of the 1st p. personal pronoun «ἐγώ» ĕgṓ + «οὐχί» oukʰí (Classical particle used to show disagreement or negation «οὐ» ou which antevocalically becomes «οὐκ» ouk, (Homeric) «οὐκί» oukí, (Attic) «οὐχί» oukʰí --> not) > (colloq.) «ἐγὤχι» ĕgṓkʰĭ > Byz.Gr aphetism «ὤχι» ṓkhi & (later) «ὄχι» ókhi > MoGr «όχι» [ˈɔ.çi].

    Not: (1) Proclitic negation particle «δε(ν)» [ðe(n)] < Byz.Gr. «δέν» dén, aphetism of Classical adv. «οὐδέν» oudén --> in no way, not at all < adverbialised neuter nom. «οὐδέν» of the pronoun «οὐδείς» oudeí̯s --> no one, nobody, none, nothing.
    (2) Proclitic negation particle «μή(ν)» [mi(n)] < Classical negation particle «μή» mḗ --> not.

    (1) is used in clauses with indicative mood, (2) is used primarily in subjunctive contexts. Both particles are syntactically part of the proclitic group in front of the verb, and can be separated from the verb only by intervening clitic pronouns.
     

    dihydrogen monoxide

    Senior Member
    Slovene, Serbo-Croat
    In Greek we use different words:

    No: «Όχι» [ˈɔ.çi]. It derives from the crasis of the 1st p. personal pronoun «ἐγώ» ĕgṓ + «οὐχί» oukʰí (Classical particle used to show disagreement or negation «οὐ» ou which antevocalically becomes «οὐκ» ouk, (Homeric) «οὐκί» oukí, (Attic) «οὐχί» oukʰí --> not) > (colloq.) «ἐγὤχι» ĕgṓkʰĭ > Byz.Gr aphetism «ὤχι» ṓkhi & (later) «ὄχι» ókhi > MoGr «όχι» [ˈɔ.çi].

    Not: (1) Proclitic negation particle «δε(ν)» [ðe(n)] < Byz.Gr. «δέν» dén, aphetism of Classical adv. «οὐδέν» oudén --> in no way, not at all < adverbialised neuter nom. «οὐδέν» of the pronoun «οὐδείς» oudeí̯s --> no one, nobody, none, nothing.
    (2) Proclitic negation particle «μή(ν)» [mi(n)] < Classical negation particle «μή» mḗ --> not.

    (1) is used in clauses with indicative mood, (2) is used primarily in subjunctive contexts. Both particles are syntactically part of the proclitic group in front of the verb, and can be separated from the verb only by intervening clitic pronouns.
    [/QUOTE

    How would that be expressed in Ancient Greek?
     

    Awwal12

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Hi Whodunit! :)

    In Russian, we too have two words - не and нет. The example sentence can be translated like that:
    - Ты хочешь домой?
    - Нет. Я не хочу идти домой.
    So, in this sentence, нет means the same as the English 'no', and не - the same as 'not'.
    It should be noted that while "нет" means "no" and is the only option in constructions describing an absence ("нет" + NG(gen.)), "не" also can be used for a negative answer in informal speech (cf. English "nah").
     

    apmoy70

    Senior Member
    Greek
    How would that be expressed in Ancient Greek?
    Well, in Classical Greek, negation was expressed with the negation particle «οὐ» ou which becomes the antevocalic «οὐκ» ouk before a vowel with spiritus lenis, and the antevocalic «οὐχ» oukʰ before a vowel with spiritus asper. It is generally regarded that it's coming from the Proto-Hellenic phrase *ne oi̯u kʷid --> not at all, not ever, not on your life.
    David Willis Christopher Lucas Anne Breitbarth-The History of negation in the languages of Europe and the Mediterranean said:
    *ne the historically real negator + *oi̯u (PIE *h₂oi̯u-/*h₂ei̯u- lifetime, long time), used adverbially and added to strengthen the negative + *kʷid an indefinite or generalizing particle. Ultimately, the negative *ne lost its salience and was dropped, *oi̯u kʷid became *oi̯ukid (by the boukólos rule), whence by regular sound changes oukí and the shorter forms ouk and ou
    Τhe negation particle «μή» mḗ (< PIE *meh₁ no, not an Armeno-Greco-Albano-Indo-Iranian grammatical isogloss that originally meant not and later obtained the function of the prohibitive particle) was used in Classical Greek as negation particle in clauses expressing:
    • will or thought
    • with an imperative or subjunctive in negative commands
    • with an optative or past indicative, expressing a negative wish
    • in a question expecting a negative answer
    • in dependent clauses
    • with participle representing conditional clause
    • in warnings or statements of fear
    • introducing indirect statement after verb of fearing or apprehension
     

    oveka

    Senior Member
    Ukraine, Ukrainian
    In Ukrainian:
    - Ти хочеш додому?
    - Ні. Я не хочу йти дому.
    So, in this sentence, ні means the same as the English 'no', and не - the same as 'not'.
     

    nimak

    Senior Member
    Macedonian
    In Macedonian не (ne) [nɛ] = no, not

    No
    , I do not want to go home. = Не, не сакам да одам дома. (Ne, ne sakam da odam doma.)
     

    Sardokan1.0

    Senior Member
    Sardu / Italianu
    Like other Romance languages and Italian, also Sardinian uses two different words, but they are inverted if compared with Italian.

    No = Non
    Not = No
    No, I don't know = Non, no 'nd isco (compared with Italian the literal translation is "no, non ne so" = no, I don't know of it)
     

    Penyafort

    Senior Member
    Catalan (Catalonia), Spanish (Spain)
    Catalan works like Spanish in this case: we only have no.

    Do you want to go home? - No. I don't want to go home.
    Vols anar a casa? - No. No vull anar a casa.
    I'll only add a difference. Catalan, unlike Spanish, may also use pas in order to reinforce the negation. It is not compulsory as in French though, and Catalan can use pas after no in short replies.

    Vols anar a casa? - No pas. No vull anar pas a casa.
    Do you want to go home? - Not at all. I don't want to go home at all.

    In Northern Catalan, this pas has effectively replaced no, therefore with no reinforcing meaning, but simple negation.

    Vull anar pas a casa. - I don't want to go home.
     
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