Transformation of Sentence: Affirmative & Negative

In any “transformation of sentences” or “do as directed” grammar test, negative to affirmative sentence and vice versa is very common. Sentences can be transformed from affirmative (positive meaning) to negative and vice versa by using the following elements depending on the given instance.

1. Only – none but

  • Only you are fit for this post. – None but you are fit for this post.
  • Only a fool would think that way. – None but a fool would think that way.

2. As soon as – no sooner than

  • As soon as → No sooner did + Verb1 / No sooner had + Verb3
  • The comma (,) must be replaced by “than”.
  • As soon as we reached the station, the train arrived. – No sooner did we reach the station than the train arrive.
  • As soon as we finished our dinner, we went to bed. – No sooner had we finished our dinner than we went to bed.

3. Too…to – so…that

too → so
to → that + sub + negative
  • She is too weak to walk. – She is so weak that she cannot walk.
  • I was too shocked to speak. – I was so shocked that I could not speak.
  • This poem is too easy to need an explanation. – This poem is so easy that it does not need an explanation.
  • It is raining too hard for us to go out. – It is raining so hard that we cannot go out.

4. If – unless

unless = if not
  • Unless he comes, I won’t go. – If he comes, I will go.
  • If you don’t work hard, you will fail. – Unless you work hard, you will fail.

5. Changing degree of adjectives

Affirmative Sentences can be transformed into negative and vice versa by changing the degree of adjectives (Full guide on Degree of Adjectives here).

  • Bangalore is cleaner than Kolkata. – Kolkata is not so clean as Bangalore.
  • All subjects are equally important. – No subject is more important than the other.

6. Negative using opposite word

  • He is a careless man. – He is not a careful man.
  • Please keep silence. – Please do not make sound.

7. Negative using interrogative

  • She is a good singer. – Isn’t she a good singer?
  • He was not present there. – Was he present there?

8. Negative using ‘not only … but also’

  • He is both a teacher and a doctor. – He is not only a teacher but also a doctor.
  • The restaurant serves both veg and non-veg dishes. – Not only does the restaurant serve veg dishes but also non-veg dishes.

9. Miscellaneous negative sentences

  • It is a pity he did not win the prize. – It is a pity he failed to win the prize.
  • Never again will we have class together. – This is the last time we are having class together.
  • All young princes desired her hand. – There was hardly any young prince who did not desire her hand.
  • I cannot but help him. – I am compelled to help him. / I am unable to avoid helping him.
Written by , Last updated on December 29, 2022