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Lesson Transcript

Salut, je m'appelle Ingrid. Hi everybody! I’m Ingrid.
Welcome to FrenchPod101.com’s “Le français en 3 minutes”. The fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn French.
In our previous lessons, we learned how to use the verbs être and avoir. In this lesson, we’re going to learn how to turn these two verbs into their negative forms in order to say "I'm not" and "I don't have."
So let's take an example. Imagine you are about to go to a party with a French friend. You ask him if he is ready, and he answers Non je ne suis pas prêt.
Then, you ask him if he has a car to use to go to the party and he says Non, je n'ai pas de voiture.
Let’s look at these two negative sentences:
Non je ne suis pas prêt
Non je n'ai pas de voiture
[slowly] non je ne suis pas prêt/non je n'ai pas de voiture)
Did you catch some similar words in these two sentences?
Right! In each sentence, you have two little words, ne and pas. These are the special words used to make a verb negative in French.
So let's have a look on the way to switch from affirmative to negative.
First with the verb être. If your friend *were* ready, he would say Je suis prêt, “I am ready.” But he actually said Je ne suis pas prêt.
So basically, you just have to put the word ne before the verb, and the word pas after it.
Now let's look at an example with the verb avoir, "to have":
"I have a car" is J'ai une voiture, and "I don't have a car" is Je n'ai pas de voiture
But wait, this is a little different from the last version. The first negation word ne becomes shortened and attached to the verb.
Why? That's because in French, when the first letter of the verb is a vowel, you remove the vowel from the end of the prounoun in front of it. That’s why you just say je n'ai pas.
So now, how would you say "I don't like this restaurant?" For reference, “I like this restaurant.” is “J’aime ce restaurant.” Put ne in front of aime and pas behind it. Don’t forget about the abbreviations. Ne loses its vowel and Je regains it. Je n'aime pas ce restaurant.
[slowly] Je n'aime pas ce restaurant.
Easy, don't you think? So now you can turn many sentences into negative form just by adding these two little words NE or N' and PAS.
Now it’s time for Ingrid’s tips.
If you want to answer negatively but without being too direct, you can add the word vraiment after the pas. This will mean "I don't really...."
So if you want to say "I don't really like cars," it will be Je n'aime pas vraiment voitures.
Get ready for the next lesson because we are going to study a really important part of the French language: using adjectives.
I’ll be waiting for you in the next Le français en 3 minutes.
A bientôt!