Unit 8.2

No vs Not

Determiners - 2 minutes

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Introduction

No and not convey a negative meaning for clauses, words and expressions.

Form

No and not have different position in the sentence.

We find:

  • No before nouns without articles and with -ing form to mean “not any”; 
  • Not before nouns (with articles), adverbs, adjectives and verb. It appears also before the words any, enough, many, much.

Example

  • Could you please give me some hydrogen peroxide? No way, it is dangerous for children.
  • I’m a dentist, not a psychologist.
  • The professor is not clearly explaining the lesson.
  • The meaning is not clear.
  • There are not any antibiotics in the drawer.
  • There is not enough alcohol for everyone.
  • Not many people can afford private health service.
  • There isn’t much time left.

  • No vs Not (emphasis):
    • There is no thermometer in the bathroom. (More emphasis)
      There is not thermometer in the bathroom.
    • You have got no emails. (More emphasis)
      You have not got any emails.

Use

We use no and not for stating that someone/something is absent or negative. They have slightly difference in meaning.

  • We use no in yes/no questions and to give more emphasis to the sentence;
  • We use not for the negative form of sentences and to give less emphasis to a sentence.

{See Present Simple Negative, A1 level}

Summary

No and not are both used to obtain the negative meaning of clauses, words and expressions. {See Present Simple Negative, A1 level}

We find:

  • No before nouns without articles and with -ing form to express “not any”;
  • Not before nouns (with articles), adverbs, adjectives and verbs.
    It also appears before the words any, enough, many or much.

For example:
“There is no cake left.” = No can be used with nouns but without an article.
“There is not anyone in the office.” = Not can be used with adjectives.

Let’s revise this content within the {Form} section. Take a look at the {Example} section that shows its use within a context.

Exercise

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