Grammar Info

N2 Lesson 6: 17/20

Classical negative, Classical verb [ない]

Some set phrases cannot be rephrased to ない

Structure

Verb[ない+
Verb[ない+ + Noun

Exceptions:
する → せ
くる → こ
いる → おら

Details

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    Standard

  • 使用域

    一般

About ぬ

is the attributive form of ず, a classical auxiliary verb that is used for negation like ない, and connects to verbs in the same way.
As is the attributive form of ず, it may be seen modifying nouns that directly follow it. However, this use is not common in modern times, and in many cases it will be used as part of set expressions that have not changed in the time since ない became the far more widely used structure for negation. Alternatively, it may just be used for artistic expression, or to make a character seem 'classical'.
  • こんなに(せま)(みち)(とお)
    I cannot pass a road this narrow.
  • なんだこの(めし)は!こんなまずそうなものは(くち)()
    What is this food? I will not put this disgusting thing in my mouth!
  • 貴様(きさま)みたいなものには、わしなど(ころ)
    I cannot be killed by someone like you.
In the case that the verb being negated is いる, the old fashion おる will be modified to おらぬ instead.
  • 鈴木(すずき)殿(どの)はここにはおらぬ
    Suzuki-dono is not here.
Alternatively, する will be negated as せぬ, and くる will be negated as こぬ. This is consistent with the standard conjugation patterns seen with the use of ず.
  • あの(かた)(ひと)(きず)つけるようなことはせぬ
    That person would never do anything to hurt anyone.
  • (ばあ)さんが(かわ)から(かえ)ってこぬ
    My wife won't come back from the river.

Examples

  • (すみ)()(ひと)」というのは「(あなど)れない(ひと)」ということなのだ。

    'Sumi ni okenu hito' means 'a person who cannot be taken lightly'.

  • こちらでは(せい)による差別(さべつ)許可(きょか)されておら

    Sex discrimination is not permitted here.

  • (おろ)(もの)(おとこ)には(ころ)のだ。」

    'Fool, no man can kill me.'

  • ()までもないことだが、知人(ちじん)(たい)して素知(そし)ふりをするのは失礼(しつれい)ある

    Needless to say, pretending not to know acquaintances is rude.

    素知らぬ means 'to feign or pretend not to know'.

  • 上司(じょうし)部下(ぶか)向上(こうじょう)できるように、(いた)(てん)(おし)えてあげるべきだ。

    A superior should tell his/her subordinates where they fall short so that they can improve.

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ぬ – Grammar Discussion

Most Recent Replies (4 in total)

  • nekoyama

    nekoyama

    About 3 years ago

    There is a grammar point for ずに.

  • s1212z

    s1212z

    About 3 years ago

    There are ~12 V-ず grammar points right now and most are adverbial v-ずに while ぬ is a modifier as an archaic ない. I didn’t see anything that was interchangeable between these two, was there a specific usage that hasn’t been covered yet for ず?

  • Ambo100

    Ambo100

    About 3 years ago

    ずに looks like the most relevant one I think, I’ll have a look at that.

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