previous next

326. Two negatives are equivalent to an affirmative:—
  1. nēmō nōn audiet, every one will hear (nobody will not hear).
  2. nōn possum nōn cōnfitērī; (Fam. 9.14.1), I must confess.
  3. ut ... nōn timēre quidem sine aliquō timōre possīmus (Mil. 2) , so that we cannot even be relieved of fear without some fear.

a. Many compounds or phrases of which nōn is the first part express an indefinite affirmative:—

  1. nōn nūllus, some; nōn nūllī; (=aliquī), some few.
  2. nōn nihil (=aliquid), something.
  3. nōn nēmō; (=aliquot), sundry persons.
  4. nōn numquam (=aliquotiēns), sometimes.

b. Two negatives of which the second is nōn (belonging to the predicate) express a universal affirmative:—

  1. nēmō nōn, nūllus nōn, nobody [does] not, i.e. everybody [does]. [Cf. nōn nēmō, not nobody, i.e. somebody.]
  2. nihil nōn, everything. [Cf. nōn nihil, something.]
  3. numquam nōn, never not, i.e. always. [Cf. nōn numquam, sometimes.]

c. A statement is often made emphatic by denying its contrary (Litotes, § 641):—

  1. nōn semel (=saepissimē), often enough (not once only).
  2. nōn haec sine nūmine dīvom ēveniunt (Aen. 2.777) , these things do not occur without the will of the gods.
  3. haec nōn nimis exquīrō; (Att. 7.18.3), not very much, i.e. very little.

Note.--Compare nōn nūllus , nōn nēmō , etc., in a above.

hide References (1 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • J. B. Greenough, Benjamin L. D'Ooge, M. Grant Daniell, Commentary on Caesar's Gallic War, AG BG 1.8
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: