I'm looking at negation in Chinese. I know:

不:我不去。I don't want to go. 不多:他话不多。He doesn't talk much.

没:他没去美国。He didn't go to America.

未:未必:not necessarily

否:不管我们喜欢与否,Whether we like it or not,

无:无处不有 everywhere

非:非常 unusual 非法 illegal

Are there other ways of negating in Chinese?

  • 1
    不然 bkrs:① 不是这样:抄抄写写看起来很容易,其实不然。 ② 用在对话开头,表示否定对方的话:不然,事情不像你说的那么简单。 ③ 连词,表示如果不是上文所说的情况,就发生或可能发生下文所说的情况:快走吧,不然就要迟到了 | 明天我还有点事儿,不然倒可以陪你去一趟 | 他晚上不是读书,就是写点儿什么,再不然就是听听音乐。
    – user6065
    Dec 14, 2018 at 3:48
  • Maybe one more: 禁止, 严禁 [forbidden, not allow] E.G. 我禁止你跟他有来往 [I (command you not)/(forbid you) to get interacted with him].
    – xbh
    Dec 14, 2018 at 8:50

2 Answers 2


A few more I can think of: 勿(勿忘我),莫(爱莫能助),毋(毋庸置疑),别 (别烦我)


So far we have

不 (no), 不是(isn't),不能 (unable),不可(can't),不得 (can't/not allow),不許 (not allow),不行 (can't)

否 (negative)

没 (didn't; had not)

未 (have not)

无 (without)

非 (is not)

勿, 莫, 毋, 别 (don't)

I can think of one more

休(give up/ don't): 休要 (don't); 休想 (don't hope to/ don't think about);休得無禮 (don't be rude)


難 (difficult): as an adverb virtually means 'can't'

e.g. 難敵 (can't win against); 難忘 (can't forget)

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