English Grammar
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GRAMMAR MISTAKES > Attraction > ALONE (usage) > AND relative > Broken Construction > Difficult Words > Double Negative > Each, Every, Either, Neither (usage) > First Personal Pronoun > Ellipses > Loose Participles > NONE (usage) > ONE (usage) > ONLY (usage) > Past Tense > Prespositions > Pronouns > Redundancies > Sequence of Person > Split Infinitive > Tenses > A or AN? > AM COME or HAVE COME? > BETWEEN or AMONG? > EACH OTHER or ONE ANOTHER? > EAT or ATE? > FLEE or FLY? > FURTHER or FARTHER? > IN or INTO? > LAY or LIE? > LESS or FEWER? > NEITHER or NOR? > OTHER or ANOTHER? > RISE or RAISE? > SAYS or SAID? > SUMMON or SUMMONS? > THAT or SO? > THESE or THOSE? > THIS MUCH or THUS MUCH? > THROUGH or THROUGHOUT? > UNDENIABLE or UNEXCEPTIONABLE? > VOCATION or AVOCATION? > WAS or WERE?

DOUBLE NEGATIVE

It must be remembered that two negatives in the English language destroy each other and are equivalent to an affirmative. Thus "I don't know nothing about it" is intended to convey, that I am ignorant of the matter under consideration, but it defeats its own purpose, inasmuch as the use of nothing implies that I know something about it. The sentence should read—"I don't know anything about it."

Often we hear such expressions as "He was not asked to give no opinion," expressing the very opposite of what is intended. This sentence implies that he was asked to give his opinion. The double negative, therefore, should be carefully avoided, for it is insidious and is liable to slip in and the writer remain unconscious of its presence until the eye of the critic detects it.


GRAMMAR MISTAKES > Attraction > ALONE (usage) > AND relative > Broken Construction > Difficult Words > Double Negative > Each, Every, Either, Neither (usage) > First Personal Pronoun > Ellipses > Loose Participles > NONE (usage) > ONE (usage) > ONLY (usage) > Past Tense > Prespositions > Pronouns > Redundancies > Sequence of Person > Split Infinitive > Tenses > A or AN? > AM COME or HAVE COME? > BETWEEN or AMONG? > EACH OTHER or ONE ANOTHER? > EAT or ATE? > FLEE or FLY? > FURTHER or FARTHER? > IN or INTO? > LAY or LIE? > LESS or FEWER? > NEITHER or NOR? > OTHER or ANOTHER? > RISE or RAISE? > SAYS or SAID? > SUMMON or SUMMONS? > THAT or SO? > THESE or THOSE? > THIS MUCH or THUS MUCH? > THROUGH or THROUGHOUT? > UNDENIABLE or UNEXCEPTIONABLE? > VOCATION or AVOCATION? > WAS or WERE?