In this lesson we are going to talk about negations in French. In other words, how to make a sentence negative.
Examples of negations in English are:
- I don’t speak French.
- We don’t go to the cinema.
- Laura doesn’t eat very well.
To make a sentence negative in French, we place “ne” in front of the conjugated verb and “pas” just after it.
I often compare it to a sandwich, ne…pas being the two slices of bread and the conjugated verb being the filling.
So, let’s translate the English sentences above.
- I don’t speak French = Je ne parle pas Français.
- We don’t go to the cinema = On ne va pas au cinema.
- Laura doesn’t eat very well = Laura ne mange pas très bien
If you want to alter the negative meaning of a sentence, you’ll just need to change “pas” into the one you want below.
- Ne….jamais= Never
Je ne parle jamais la bouche pleine / I never speak with a full mouth
- Ne….rien= not….anything
Je ne fais rien / I don’t do anything
- Ne…personne = not….anyone
Je ne rencontre personne / I don’t meet anyone
- Ne….aucun= Not…any/none
Je ne prends aucun document / I don’t take any document