speak chinese like a native

Double negative?

Posted by trevorb February 1, 2008 in the Group General Discussion .


Does mandarin have the concept of a double negative?

I was listening to the stingy boss lesson and the term cónglái bùqǐng (从来不清)came up and another example of was given of having never been to china that used cónglái méiyǒu.

I translated that as "never not treat" and "never not have" but the actual meaing was the exact opposite of that translation.  Is this due to the use of cónglái or is there some grammar thing I'm not getting here?  I think this is the only time I've encountred this but I fell into it both listening to the lessson and reading the hanzi so I need to figure this one out :-)

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