english - practical english grammar

Competitive Exams - English

Practical English Grammar

MCQ
Notes

Confusing usage words part eight


In mathematics, a negative number times a negative number yields a positive number.

Similarly, in grammar, when two negative words are used (where only one is needed), the
negatives cancel each other out, making the idea positive and not negative as intended. In
the sentence, ‘‘I cannot get no respect from them,’’ the two negative words, cannot and no,
cancel each other out. Thus, the sentence is really saying, ‘‘I can get respect from them,’’
a far different thought from what seems to be the sentence’s original intention. Had the
sentence read, ‘‘I cannot get respect from them,’’ or ‘‘I can get no respect from them,’’
the meaning is quite different from that when both negative words are included in the
sentence.
Here is another example of this double negative situation. Notice the different meanings
when the negative words are included or deleted.
Two negative words in the sentence: We didn’t have no disappointments.
One negative word in the sentence:We didn’t have disappointments.
One negative word in the sentence:We had no disappointments.

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Notes


Practical English Grammar - Notes
1. compound subjects part two
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2. Quotation Marks Part Three
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3. Italics Hyphens and Brackets
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4. complete and simple predicates
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5. the object of the preposition
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6. the participle and participial phrase
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7. the adjective clause
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8. what good writers do
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9. compound subject and compound predicate
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10. introducing phrases
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11. the noun adjective pronoun question
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12. the gerund and gerund phrase
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13. introducing clauses
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14. Commas Part Five
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15. types of sentences by purpose
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16. the indirect object
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17. types of nouns
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18. the pronoun
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19. the adjective
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20. the verb
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21. the adverb
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22. The nominative case
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23. Confusing usage words part one
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24. Second Capitalization List
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25. compound prepositions and the preposition adverb question
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26. the direct object
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27. subject complements predicate nominatives and predicate adjectives
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28. the verb phrase
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29. the noun clause
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30. Confusing usage words part three
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31. Active and passive voices
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32. Commas Part Three
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33. Commas Part Four
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34. Quotation Marks Part Two
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35. regular verb tenses
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36. the preposition
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37. The coordinating conjunction
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38. the interjection
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39. reflexive demonstrative and interrogative pronouns
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40. The possessive case
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41. Indefinite pronouns and the possessive case
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42. Confusing usage words part eight
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43. Sound a like words Part Two
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44. Commas Part Two
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45. The Apostrophe
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46. complete and simple subjects
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47. the adverb phrase
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48. the appositive
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49. the adverb clause
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50. Confusing usage words part three
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