# negation

I wonder if anybody can remove this obstacle.

( A : have never visited London )

= Haven’t you ever visited London?
Now my question is:
1= Yes, I haven’t.Or
2= Yes, I have.
And does (No, I haven’t) equal any of the two answers?
With my regards.

Hi,

It depends on whether A has ever visited London. If he has, he would say: Yes. I have but if he hasn’t visited London, he would say: No. I haven’t.

Alan

Hi English teacher,

As you stated very clearly at the beginning of your post that A has never visited London, then he would say: No, I haven’t.

‘Yes, I haven’t’ is a confusion of positive and negative.

Hi Alan and Beeesneees,
Thanks a lot for your explanations, but note I agree if the question was:
= Haven you ever visited London? the answer:
A= No, I haven’t BUT if the question was:
= [color=blue]Haven’t you ever visited London? the answer also" No, I haven’t!!
NOW I’m confused.

Haven you … is incorrect grammar.
Have you… is the positive form,
Haven’t you… or Have you not… is the negative form,
perhaps that was a typo?

If you consider that the negative form equates to
“Have you never visited London?”
“No, I have never visited London.”
or is that just as confusing?

Hi Beee…,
First of all “Haven” was written incorrectly, because of the keyboard of my PC.!!! in other words “yes, it’s typo’
Then, " Your question: Have you never…?” with its answer " No, I have never…"
Is it equal to my answer ?" Yes, I haven’t visited London." because my question started in negative way " [color=blue]Haven’t…"
With my respect.

‘Have you never’ can be seen as being equivalent to ‘haven’t you ever’

Your answer. Yes, I haven’t visited London’ would not be considered to be the correct response.

A learner

A:Never, have I ever!

Hi English Teacher,

This is a very interesting question.

In Chinese style, the answer is : “Yes, I haven’t.” or just “Yes” in the short form.

The first part of the sentence “Yes” directly responds to the question telling you that you are right or your question ( or guess ) is correct.
The second part “I haven’t” is the answer itself.

The first part and the second part have no relationship.

Thus we may have all four combinations in Chinese style depending on the question and situation :
“Yes, I have”
“Yes, I haven’t” ( not an English style )
“No, I have” ( not an English style )
“No, I haven’t”

However, in English, the answer of your question should be : “ No, I haven’t.”

The word “No” is independent of the question but should agree to the second part of the negative answer.

Therefore we must use “No, I haven’t” for negative answer no matter the question is a positive one or a negative one. I think this explains why you were confused in your #4 message as you expected different answers from different forms of questions. That’s true in the Chinese style but not in English.

Similarly, we use “Yes, I have” for positive answer regardless of a positive or negative question.

This is why most Chinese learners, including me, always make mistakes especially in answering negative questions in conversation without enough time for thinking.

To avoid confusion, don’t ask Chinese people with negative questions.
If their short answer is “Yes”, they probably mean “No”, and vice versa !

Good luck,

Nick

Nicely explained, Nick.