No or Not

No or Not
No or Not

No

1: We use ‘no’ to reply to a question.

  • A: Are you coming to the party? B: No.
  • A: Did she go home? B: No, she’s over there.

2: We use ‘no’ before a noun. We don’t use ‘a / an / the’. It means ‘not any’.

  • There is no bread left.
  • She has no money.

3: We use ‘no’ before a noun that has an adjective but no article.

  • There are no small sandwiches..
  • No young people went to the meeting.

4: We use ‘no’ before a gerund

  • No smoking!
  • No fishing!

We can’t use ‘not’ and ‘no’ together in standard English. It’s possible in some dialects of English but it is not traditionally correct.

  • We have no friends.
  • NOT: We don’t have no friends.

No and not any

No = not any (though ‘no’ is a little stronger)

  • There is no bread.
  • There isn’t any bread.

We don’t use ‘no’ with ‘any’.

  • NOT: There is no any bread.

Not

We use ‘not’ in almost every other situation. Sometimes we shorten it to ‘n’t’.

1: It’s used to make a verb negative.

  • She does not want to go.
  • We didn’t find the money.

2: It’s used with an adjective without a noun.

  • That is not okay.
  • A: How is your brother? B: Not well.

3: It’s used with an adverb.

  • Not surprisingly, it was dark when we left.

4: It’s used with any / much / many / enough

  • A: Do you like coffee? B: Not much.
  • NOT: A: Do you like coffee? B: No much.
  • A: How many books do you have? B: Not enough!
  • NOT: How many books do you have? B: No enough!
  • Not many people came to the meeting.
  • NOT: No many people came to the meeting.

4: It’s used with nouns that have ‘a / an / the’.

  • There is not a cat in the garden.
  • OR: There is no cat in the garden.
  • NOT: There is no a cat in the garden.
  • A: Who went to the meeting? B: Not the students.
  • OR: A: Who went to the meeting? B: No students.
  • NOT: A: Who went to the meeting? B: No the students.

5: We use ‘not’ before a pronoun or noun in short replies.

  • A: Who ate the chocolate? B: Not me.
  • A: Who went to the party? B: Not Luke.
  • A: Who is going to pay for this? B: Not you.

No good

Exception: we can use either ‘no’ or ‘not’ with ‘good’.

  • It’s no good = this is a fixed expression that means that it’s not useful or interesting.
  • It’s not good = this is the normal negative.

Would you like more practice? Get a new grammar lesson every week, a new listening lesson every week and more, Come to our academies!

Walton Palmer App
¡Descarga nuestra nueva App!

Leave a comment

Este sitio usa Akismet para reducir el spam. Aprende cómo se procesan los datos de tus comentarios.