Lock in our old prices!
Your last chance to upgrade at these rates »

Use of prepositions in negation of an infinitive

L. B.C1Kwiziq community member

Use of prepositions in negation of an infinitive

Why is it sometimes « ne pas de » plus infinitive, « ne pas a » plus infinitive, or in other examples simply « ne pas »  plus infinitive?  Can someone explain the reason for the use of de or a, or their omission?  Thank you. 

Asked 2 years ago
Chris W.C1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor Correct answer

The preposition (à, de or none) is dictated by the verb.

Maarten K.C1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

A couple of issues 

1. I think you are referring to seeing no preposition, de or à preceding ne pas (several examples in the lesson) - in the form of (conjugated verb) {no preposition/de/à} [ne pas infinitive], rather than {ne pas} (followed by de or à) [infinitive], as the point of your question

2. It is the conjugated verb that precedes [ne pas infinitive] that determines whether no preposition/de/à is needed - as per the lists of verbs that require à or de before an infinitive. https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/verbs-with-de/ https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/verbs-with-a/

Erica S.B2Kwiziq community member

Thank you for the explanation and the links. Are there any lessons that teach when de or à are needed or is this something that just needs to be memorized?

Maarten K.C1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Erica, there is no easy way to ‘predict’ the verb-preposition combinations. There are many good reference sites with lists of verbs requiring à or de,  such as those I linked above, but you will tend to acquire the commonly used verbs naturally as you read and practise French. 

Mike H.B2Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Maartin's link on this question is very helpful along with other inks in that lesson.  https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/verbs-with-de/ https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/verbs-with-a/

I would like to add it to my notebook, but on my subscription page, I can't find it.  Is there a way to do this?

Mike H.B2Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Maartin's link on this question is very helpful along with other inks in that lesson.  https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/verbs-with-de/ https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/verbs-with-a/

I would like to add it to my notebook, but on my subscription page, I can't find it.  Is there a way to do this?

Mike H.B2Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Maartin's link on this question is very helpful along with other inks in that lesson.  https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/verbs-with-de/ https://www.lawlessfrench.com/grammar/verbs-with-a/

I would like to add it to my notebook, but on my subscription page, I can't find it.  Is there a way to do this?

L. B. asked:View original

Use of prepositions in negation of an infinitive

Why is it sometimes « ne pas de » plus infinitive, « ne pas a » plus infinitive, or in other examples simply « ne pas »  plus infinitive?  Can someone explain the reason for the use of de or a, or their omission?  Thank you. 

Sign in to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

Ask a question

Find your French level for FREE

Test your French to the CEFR standard

Find your French level
Thinking...