not - definition in the Learner's Dictionary - Cambridge Dictionaries Online

Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “not”

See all translations

not

adverb
 
 
/nɒt/
A1 used to form a negative phrase after verbs like 'be', 'can', 'have', 'will', 'must', etc, usually used in the short form 'n't' in speech: I won't tell her. I can't go. He hasn't eaten yet. Don't you like her? It isn't difficult (= It is easy). The service isn't very good (= it is bad). You're coming, aren't you? I will not tolerate laziness.Yes, no and not
A1 used to give the next word or group of words a negative meaning: I told you not to do that. I like most vegetables but not cabbage. "Come and play football, Dad." "Not now, Jamie." "Whose are these?" "Not mine."Yes, no and not
A2 used after verbs like 'be afraid', 'hope', 'suspect', etc in short, negative replies: "Do you think it's going to rain?" "I hope not." "Have you finished?" "I'm afraid not."Yes, no and not
certainly/hopefully not used after an adverb in short, negative replies: "She's not exactly poor, is she?" "Certainly not." "We won't need much money, will we?" "Hopefully not."Yes, no and not
not at all B2 used instead of 'no' or 'not' to emphasize what you are saying: "I hope this won't cause you any trouble." "No, not at all." I'm not at all happy about it.Intensifying expressionsYes, no and not
Not at all. B1 used as a polite reply after someone has thanked you: "Thanks for all your help." "Not at all."Polite expressions
if not A2 used to say what the situation will be if something does not happen: I hope to see you there but, if not, I'll call you.Yes, no and not
or not A2 used to express the possibility that something might not happen: Are you coming or not?Yes, no and not
not a/one used to emphasize that there is nothing of what you are talking about: Not one person came to hear him talk. "You haven't heard from Nick, have you?" "Not a word."Yes, no and not
(Definition of not from the Cambridge Learners Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “not” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

cost/charge the earth

to cost, charge, etc. a lot of money

Word of the Day

The language of elections

by Liz Walter,
April 22, 2015
On May 7th, citizens of the UK will be going to the polls (having an election) to decide who will form the next government. This kind of election is known as a general election. The country is divided into 650 areas, called constituencies. Each constituency elects a member of parliament (MP) to

Read More 

dumbwalking noun

April 20, 2015
walking slowly, without paying attention to the world around you because you are consulting a smartphone He told me dumbwalking probably wouldn’t be a long-term problem.

Read More