Q20ANegQ_Polarity-based confirmation

Untitled Document Consider the following conversation carried out in your language:
  • Interlocutor A says to B: "You told me earlier that your brother was going to Paris. But now I see him here. Did he not go to Paris after all?"

What does B answer if his brother didn't go (because he changed his mind)?
Does he say "No", meaning that he didn't go, or does he say "Yes", meaning that he didn't go?

This property has the value 'yes' if, in the context provided above, B says "No " meaning that he didn't go.

A 'yes' value for this property is compatible with a 'yes' value for Q19.

For this property, it does not matter if the negative particle is the only element in the minimal answer.

A 'yes' value for this property is compatible with a 'yes' value for Q19.


  1. English has the value 'yes' for this property, since in this context B would answer:
    • "No." (meaning that he didn't go).
  2. Finnish has the value 'yes' for this property, since in the context provided, B could answer:
    • ei mennyt
      not went
      "No (he didn't go)."
  3. Korean has the value 'no' for this property because the following is an infelicitous answer given the context:
    • # ani-yo (an kasse-yo)
        no-POLITE (not went-POLITE)
Contributed by: Anders Holmberg and Craig Sailor
Language Value Contributor Comments
   Afrikaans Yes Theresa Biberauer
+ Albanian Yes Dalina Kallulli
  Words: Q: Nuk ka ardhur Ana? A: Jo (, nuk ka ardhur)
  Gloss: Q: not has come Ann-the(NOM) A: no, not has come
  Translation: Q: Has Ann not come? A: No (she has not come)
  Contributor: Dalina Kallulli
   Amharic No Girma Demeke
   Ancient Greek NA Cristina Guardiano
+ Arabic, Gulf Yes Dimitrios Ntelitheos
  Words: al-heen Ahmed ma safer? la
  Gloss: DET-now Ahmed not travel.PST.3SGM? NEG
  Translation: now, Ahmed didn't travel? No
  Contributor: Shaikha Saeed
   Armenian (Eastern) Yes Sona Haroutyunian
   Bafut No Pius Tamanji
   Bandial No Wolfgang Berndt
+ Basaa Yes Paul Roger Bassong
  Comment: See property Q19 above.
  Contributor: Paul Roger Bassong
   Calabrian (Northern) Yes Giuseppina Silvestri
+ Cantonese (Guangzhou) Yes Zixian Qiu
  Words: Q: Mary mou faanhok me? A: mou (faanhok)
  Gloss: Q: Mary NEG go-school Q? A: NEG (go-school)
  Translation: Q: Did Mary not go to school? A: No (she did not go to school).
  Contributor: Zixian Qiu
   Catalan Yes Victoria Mateu
   Chickasaw No Pam Munro
   Cypriot Greek Yes Marios Andreou
   Danish Yes Fabricio M. F. Gerardi
+ Dutch Yes Hilda Koopman
  Words: Is je broer uiteindelijk niet naar Parijs gegaan? B. Nee. (*ja)
  Gloss: Is your brother in the end not to Paris gone? B. No (*yes)
  Contributor: Hilda Koopman
   English Yes Craig Sailor
   English (Singapore) Yes Adam Chong
   Faroese Yes Hjalmar Páll Petersen
   Finnish Yes Anders Holmberg
   French Yes Vincent Homer
   galician Yes Naír García
   georgian Yes Lea Nash
   German Yes Viola Schmitt
+ Greek Yes Giorgos Spathas
  Words: Q: Dhen ex-i erthi i Ana? A: Oxi.
  Gloss: Q: not has-3.SG come the.SG.NOM Ann A: No.
  Translation: Q: Has Ann not arrived? A: No.
  Contributor: Giorgos Spathas
   Greek (Cappadocian) NA Metin Bagriacik No examples in textual record
   Greek (Homer) NA Cristina Guardiano
   Greek (Medieval) Yes Io Manolessou
   Gungbe (Porto-Novo) No Enoch Oladé Aboh
+ Haitian Yes Michel DeGraff
  Words: "Non, li pa t ale" or "Li pa t ale non"
  Gloss: 'No, he NEG PST go' or ' He NEG PST go No
  Translation: "No he did not go" or "He did not go no"
  Contributor: Michel DeGraff
   Hausa No Russell Schuh
   Hebrew Yes Ur Shlonsky
+ Hebrew (Biblical) Yes Massimo Gargiulo
  Words: "halo' yada'ta mah hemmah elleh?"..."Lo', 'adoni" (Zec 4,5)
  Gloss: Q+NEG know.PFV.2SG.M what they these? NEG, my lord
  Translation: Knowest thou not what these be? No, my lord.
  Contributor: Massimo Gargiulo
+ Hungarian Yes Anna Szabolcsi
  Words: Nem ment el? Answer: Nem.
  Gloss: not went-3sg? Answer: no
  Translation: No, he/she (indeed) didn't go.
  Contributor: Anna Szabolcsi
  Words: Nem, nem ment.
  Gloss: no not went.3sg
  Translation: No, he/she didn't go.
  Contributor: Anna Szabolcsi
   Ibibio Yes Willie Willie
   Icelandic Yes Jim Wood
   imbabura quichua Yes UCLA Linguistics 210
   Italian Yes Adriana Belletti
   Italian (Napoletano Antico) Yes Adam Ledgeway
   Italian (Reggiano) Yes Giovanni Roversi
   Jamaican Creole English Yes Stephanie Durrleman
   Japanese Yes Jun Yashima
   K'iche' NA Pam Munro
   KiLega No Kasangati Kinyalolo
   Kom No Richard Kwamong
   Korean No Grace Lee
   Kuot No Eva Lindström
   Kurdish (Sorani) Yes Yadgar Karimi
   Malagasy No Ed Keenan and Laura Kalin
   Malayalam Yes Mythili Menon
+ Mandarin Yes Arthur Wang
  Words: Q: Mary mei shangxue? A: mei (shangxue)
  Gloss: Q: Mary NEG go-school Q A: NEG (go-school)
  Translation: Q: Did Mary not go to school? A: No (she did not go to school).
  Contributor: Zixian Qiu
   Moroccan Arabic Yes Arwa Rangwala
   Muyang No Bebey Théodore
   Nahuatl (Central Huasteca) No John Garcia
   Nkore-Kiga No Arwa Rangwala
   Norwegian Yes Marit Julien
   Nupe No Jason Kandybowicz
   Nweh Yes Hilda Koopman
   Old English Yes Willem Koopman
   Old Saxon NA George Walkden No examples in textual record.
   Portuguese Yes Fabricio M. F. Gerardi
   Romanian Yes Monica Alexandrina Irimia
   Russian Yes Denis Paperno
   Shupamem Yes Abdoulaye Laziz Nchare
   Sicilian Yes Cristina Guardiano
   Spanish Yes Victoria Mateu
   Swedish Yes fredrik heinat
   Taiwanese Southern Min Yes Arthur Wang
   Teramano Yes Iara Mantenuto
   Tupi (Ancient) Yes Fabricio M. F. Gerardi
   Turkish Yes Deniz Ozyildiz
   Twi Yes Cansada Martin
+ Vietnamese Yes Jimmy Nguyen
  Words: Anh không mua sách này à? / Không.
  Gloss: You NEG buy book DEM EMPHASIS? / No.
  Translation: You didn't buy this book? / No (I didn't buy it).
  Contributor: Jimmy Nguyen
   Western Armenian Yes Hrayr Khanjian
   Wolof Yes Mariame Sy
   Wuhu Chinese Yes Zhuo Chen
   Yémba Yes Elsie Mawamba
+ Zamboageño Chabacano Yes Grace Gaspardo
  Words: A: Nuay ba le porsigi? B: No (nuay le anda).
  Gloss: A: Nuay ba le porsigi? B: no (NEG 3SG go)
  Translation: A: Did he not go through with it? B: No (he didn't go).
  Contributor: Grace Gaspardo