Does A Double Positive Equal A Negative?

Fun with English Grammar


A linguistics professor was lecturing his class.

“In English,” he explained, “a double negative forms a positive. In some languages, such as Russian, a double negative is still a negative. However,” the professor continued, “there is no language wherein a double positive can form a negative.”

A voice from the back of the room piped up, “Yeah, right.”


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Language is a virus from outer space. - William S Burroughs

I am disappointment in you're grammar. - Unknown

Music is the universal language of mankind. - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

A proverb is to speech what salt is to food. - Arabic Proverb

Music is well said to be the speech of angels. - Thomas Carlyle

Life is a foreign language; all men mispronounce it. - Christopher Morley

The English contribution to world cuisine. The chip. - John Cleese

Free speech is a great idea, but we're in a war. - Lindsey Graham

Drawing on my fine command of language, I said nothing. - Robert Benchley

Germlish: Training done using a mixture of English & German - Daffynitions joe-ks.com

If the French were really intelligent, they'd speak English. - Wilfred Sheed

Reality can be lost when reason and language have been violated. - Ravi Zacharias

Changes in language often reflect the changing values of a culture. - Ravi Zacharias

Think like a wise man but communicate in the language of the people. - William Butler Yeats

The four most beautiful words in our common language: I told you so. - Gore Vidal

If you're a good numbers person, you're a bad language person. - Frank Luntz

It usually takes more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech. - Mark Twain

Symptoms are the body's mother tongue; signs are in a foreign language. - John Brown

Music is the only language in which you cannot say a mean or sarcastic thing. - John Erskine

Under all speech that is good for anything there lies a silence that is better. - Thomas Carlyle

A bore is one who has the power of speech but not the capacity for conversation. - Benjamin Desraeli

Humour is practically the only thing about which the English are utterly serious. - Malcolm Muggeridge

There's nothing like an English weirdo. We have the best nutters in the world. - Sharon Osbourne

"The Hunchback Of Notre Dame" had the big fat English actor, Charles Lawson. - Archie Bunker

Speak when you're angry and you'll make the best speech you'll ever regret. - L.J. Peter

Everybody laughs the same in every language because laughter is a universal connection. - Yakov Smirnoff

I never made a mistake in grammar but once in my life, and as soon as I done it. I seen it. - Carl Sandburg

Officialese: A government language where you can understand the words, but not the sentences - Daffynitions joe-ks.com

The trouble with her is that she lacks the power of conversation but not the power of speech. - George Bernard Shaw

Anyone who has been to an English public school will always feel comparatively at home in prison. - Unknown

Sometimes I have kept my feelings to myself, because I could find no language to describe them in. - Jane Austen

Human language appears to be a unique phenomenon, without significant analogue in the animal world. - Noam Chomsky

Fashion is free speech, and one of the privileges, if not always one of the pleasures, of a free world. - Alison Lurie

The protean nature of the computer is such that it can act like a machine or like a language to be shaped and exploited. - Alan Kay

The ability to speak several languages is an asset, but the ability to keep your mouth shut in any language is priceless. - Unknown

Isn't it a very curious thing that St. Patrick drove the snakes out of Ireland an' the English brought in the fleas. - Frank McCourt

Englishmen learn Christ's law best in English. Moses heard God's law in his own tongue; so did Christ's apostles. - John Wycliffe

Always try to use the language so as to make quite clear what you mean and make sure your sentence couldn't mean anything else. - C S Lewis

Heard about the young deaf boy who used sign language?
One day he told his mother a dirty joke and she washed his hands out with soap. - Red Skelton

Mathematicians are like Frenchmen: whatever you say to them they translate into their own language and forthwith it is something entirely different. - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


see also   College,  Language  &  School  Sections
Basic Rules of English Spelling and Grammar
Books Never Written
Commas Save Lives
Cyberbulbs
Double Negative Education
First Impressions
I Like Cooking
Little Johnny’s Beautiful Examples
One Thousand Words
Practice Safe Text
Punctuation Matters
The Importance of Correct Punctuation

 

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15-May-2021