the use of "ain't"?
I sometimes encounter the English word "ain't", but am not sure what it exactly mean or how to use it.
What is it short for?Do you use it for any of 'do not', 'am not', 'has not', and so on?
- John PLv 71 month agoFavorite Answer
'Ain't' can mean 'is not'; 'am not'; 'are not'; 'has not'; and probably a few other 'verb + not' expressions, depending on context. Gigapie is right that it does not mean: "do not" - it just ain't got that meaning! ('has not got that meaning')
It is a sociolect, meaning an expression used by certain groups of people. In a middle-class home in southern England in the 1950s, 'ain't' is one of the expressions I was definitely not allowed to use.
Best not to use it in speech until you are sure that people around you use it. Do not use in writing, except as a direct report of somebody's speech pattern.
- 4 weeks ago
‘Ain’t’ is a common slang word now in the dictionary meaning ‘am not’ or something like that.
- FLv 61 month ago
99% John P. Just like to add, really a cockney word , spread through the Home Counties especially places with “over flow” Londoners like Basildon and Chatham and use by mockneys everywhere.
- Anonymous1 month ago
It means "am not," "is not," "are not," "has not," and "have not."
It does NOT mean "do not".
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- A.J.Lv 71 month ago
This is actually a difficult one. English teachers may say it isn't a word and do not use it. Merriam Webster explains "Is ain't a word?: Usage Guide"
Originally as are not (aren't), it gets colloquial as also
is not (isn't), am not, has not (hasn't), have not (haven't)
The grammar is of the whole sentence is often incorrect. It is colloquial, and is tied with lack of education, but expressions do find there way into use. I ain't got no money.
I ain't got nobody.
Two out of three ain't bad.
A song lyrics search with just the word ain't in lyrics Exact match returns the maximum 1000.
The music group Queen, song "Another One Bites The Dust"
Steve walks warily down the street
The brim pulled way down low
And ain't no sound but the sound of his feet
Machine guns ready to go
"and ain't no sound" = And there isn't any sound
"There" becomes an implied word
ain't = isn't
no = any
This is a word after getting accustomed to spoken English, when you can use "ain't" for a special emphasis.
In a song, since word flow and melody are important, the phrase is good.
Michael Jackson - "Beat It"
You have to show them that you're really not scared
You're playin' with your life, this AIN'T no Truth or Dare
They'll kick you, then they beat you, then they'll tell you it's fair
So beat it, but you wanna be bad
>> this ain't no Truth or Dare
"Truth or Dare" is a party game that you can look up.
This isn't Truth or Dare.
The double negative has one "not" ignored.
- Chi girlLv 71 month ago
It "ain't" [I'm not, you're not, s/he's not, etc.] correct English. Don't use it if you want to look educated.
edit: "Ain't" never means "HAS not." "Ain't" is a form of "to be", not "to have."
- rodcomLv 61 month ago
It was a common slang word which is not a true contraction, and was corrected by English teachers everywhere for many years. It is never to be used in formal writing.
- Anonymous1 month ago
it's informal and nonstandard, and it is a contraction of is not, are not, am not, has not
- L. E. GantLv 71 month ago
It's common usage, kind of a slang term, rather than "proper" English.
It can mean "is not", "are not" "am not", depending on the subject of the sentence (I ain't = I am not; he/she/it ain't = he/she/it is not; you ain't = you are not; they ain't = they are not)
- οικοςLv 71 month ago
Slang for "is/are not".