Les adverbes de négation

Adverbs of negation in French are always coupled, however this has become less likely in spoken French as I, and others, have discussed in the Disappearance of 'ne' in French. In written French, it is a must. The 'ne' must always be coupled with a partner to form an adverb of negation.

For example:

    Pseudo_Intellectual n'achète jamais ses armes pour les jeux de Donjons Gradeur Nature.
    Pseudo_Intellectual never buys his boffer weapons for LARPs.

    Cette épée courte ne fesse¹ que 2 de dommage.
    This short sword hits but 2 of damage.

    Je ne vous verrai plus jamais aux rencontres 2600.
    I'll never see you at the 2600 meetings.

    Sapristi! Je n'ai guère le temps d'aller rencontrer achan et p_i.
    Drats! I do not have time to go meet achan and p_i.

Except for that last example where 'guère' is employed, in spoken French, you may subtract the 'ne' (subsequently, n') from all of the above examples while still retaining the same meaning. 'Guère' is exempt from this rule, because it is almost always used in literature. I've seldom (if never) heard anyone use this in speech, however I believe that if you did use it without the 'ne', you'd still achieve the same meaning as with it.

¹"fesse" is French slang for 'hit'. Its origins come from its original noun meaning: ass. Kicking ass == hit. A widely used term in LARPs ;)

Thomas Miconi: Nicely done!

Ideas were taken from a brief conversation in the Chatterbox.