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    #1

    Not having...or Having not...?

    Dear all,
    I have one question regarding the participial construction. Hope English grammar gurus here would spare some time answering my question.

    S: Because they had not received any positive response, they decided to stage a protest against the government.

    --> Not having received any..., they decided.... (1)
    --> Having not received any..., they decided.... (2)

    According to some grammar books published here in my country, the first sentence (i.e. Not having...) is correct, while the second (Having not...) is not acceptable. But I've read a grammar book which explicitly says that "not" can either precede "Having" or follows it in an participial construction. Which one is correct? Or both sentences are correct but have slight differences in meaning? Thanks.

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Not having...or Having not...?

    My personal feeling is that both are acceptable. though the first is more common.

    Some people might feel a difference in certain contexts, for example:

    1. Not having not seen the film, I can't comment on it.
    2. Having not seen the film, I can't comment on it
    .

    Both note that the speaker has not seen the film.
    With appropriate stress, the speaker of #2 might imply that there was a deliberate decision not to see the film.

    As 'receive' does not involve conscious action on the part of the speaker, I don't think there is any difference in your sentences.

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    #3

    Thumbs up Re: Not having...or Having not...?

    Dear Jed and Milton,

    You might find this discussion interesting.
    (I bookmarked that thread because of this post by Konungursvia, which is hilarious. )

  2. 5jj's Avatar
    • Member Info
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    #4

    Re: Not having...or Having not...?

    Thanks for the link to that entertaining thread, mav. Not having not missed it before ...

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