No

You have used and heard 'No' many times. 'No' has many functions including being used as a determiner, an exclamation, an adverb, and a noun.

How to Use "No" in English?

'No' is commonly used among native English speakers. It can be a determiner, an exclamation, an adverb, and a noun. In this lesson, we will discuss how to use and learn it.

Functions of 'No'

'No' as a Determiner

One of the main functions of 'no' is to be a determiner. Below, we are going to learn all about it:

Use

'No' mainly functions as the central determiner. It comes before nouns and modifies them. Look at the following examples for more clarification:

The manager wants to hear no apologies.

As you can see, it always comes before nouns.

No more excuses, gentlemen.

Here, it is followed by a post-determiner.

Position in a Sentence

As was stated above, determiners always come before nouns. We can sometimes use 'no' as a post-determiner, too. Look at the following examples:

I can see a 'no entry' sign.

Here, 'no' has come after a central determiner which is functioning as a post-determiner.

No singing is allowed in this room.

As you can see, 'no' is a central determiner here.

'No' as an Exclamation

As it was mentioned above, 'no' can be used in many different contexts. Here, we are going to analyze how 'no' functions as an exclamation:

Use

When we want to give a negative reply, we use 'no' as a complete sentence. Look at the following examples:

A : Is Hannah ever going to learn cooking?

B : No.

A : Isn't Rick coming tonight?

B : No.

Position in a Sentence

We can use 'no' as both a complete sentence when we want to respond negatively, and also use it at the beginning of short answers to yes/no questions. Look below:

A : Are you going to be this year's leader?

B : No.

A : Are the reverend and his friend going to join us in the church?

A : No, they aren't.

'No' as an Adverb

As mentioned above, 'no' can also be an adverb. Below, we are going to learn all about it:

Use

'No' as an Adverb of Manner

'No' is usually used to show the negative condition of someone/something. So, it is called an adverb of manner. Look at the following examples for more clarification:

She is no more beautiful than her mother.

The first group was no more able to do the operation than the second one.

Position in a Sentence

When we are using 'no' as an adverb, it mainly comes before adjectives, nouns, or other adverbs to modify them and it is mostly followed by a determiner. Look:

He sings no more beautifully than his friend.

Those girls walked no faster than the others.

Here, since we have a comparative adjective, we do not need a determiner.

'No' as a Noun

We can also use 'no' as a noun. Below, we are going to learn all about it:

Use

When we want to show a negative answer or decision, we use 'no' as a noun. Look at the following examples for more clarification:

Just give me a yes or a no and I will leave you alone.

How can you say no to such an offer?

Position in a Sentence

Since 'no' is functioning as a noun here, we can use it as the subject, the object, or the object of a preposition. Look:

It is important that adults learn to say no.

Here, 'no' is the object of a verb.

Yes and no is not the answer I'm looking for.

Here, 'no' is part of the subject.

Idioms and Expressions

We have some idioms and expressions with 'no'. Below, we are going to learn all about them:

  • Not take no for an answer: When we refuse to accept someone not willing to do something, we use this expression:

Here's an invitation to my party and I will not take no for an answer.

I should be there with my parent cause they won't take no for an answer this time.

  • Yes and no: When we are uncertain of something, we use this expression:

A : So, are you going to come tonight?

B : Yes and no.

A : Are you feeling any better?

B : Yes and no.

Tip!

It might come in handy to know that native speakers sometimes use 'nope' instead of 'no' as an exclamation. It is common only in spoken English. Look:

A : Do you think she is gonna change her mind?

B : Nope.

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