tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Mon Nov 30 12:46:43 2009

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Re: Double negatives

Christopher Doty (

Fair enough, I suppose, but I think lots of English teachers actually
do say that they cancel, as do others (see, e.g., the present

On Mon, Nov 30, 2009 at 12:37, David Trimboli <> wrote:
> ghunchu'wI' 'utlh wrote:
>> On Mon, Nov 30, 2009 at 1:39 PM, Christopher Doty <> wrote:
>>> On Mon, Nov 30, 2009 at 06:29, ghunchu'wI' 'utlh <> wrote:
>>>> Double negatives in Klingon appear to act the way they do in Standard
>>>> English, with one negating the other and yielding an affirmative
>>>> meaning.
>>> This doesn't happen in Standard English, and it is stupid to say so.
>> Did I err in using the name "Standard English" to refer to the strict
>> grammatical rules taught in school?  Or did my English teachers err in
>> telling me that double negatives essentially cancel?
> Actually, the argument made by English teachers is that double negatives
> *would* cancel each other out *if they were allowed*, which is why
> they're *not* allowed. The argument is false, of course, but it's
> probably easier to say that than to get eight-year-old children to
> understand deeper mysteries of linguistics. The teachers themselves
> usually don't know any better either.
> --
> SuStel
> tlhIngan Hol MUSH

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