"No, I am not Chinese."


June 9, 2017



いいえ is no

中国人 is a chinese person

で and は are the particles (indicate what the word does in the sentence)

ありません is one whole conjugated word. あります is the positive and ありません is the negative. "ません" is the whole negative ending they just split it into ませ and ん to make sure you are paying attention and understand proper conjugation form

(If anything i said is wrong please forgive me I'm still learning myself)

June 10, 2017


excellent explanation, thank you Reid.

June 11, 2017


I think that you can simply learn ではありません as the negative present form of です. However, this has in fact an interpretation in terms of particles https://www.reddit.com/r/LearnJapanese/comments/1j7qeb/what_does_では_mean_specifically_in_では_ありません/

July 27, 2017


です is like the abreviation of ではあります?

August 14, 2017


I don't think it is an abbreviation, but simply different constructions for affirmative and negative forms. According to this Quora thread, people also use ではあります, but in a very particular way. https://www.quora.com/What-is-deha-arimasu-%E3%81%A7%E3%81%AF%E3%81%82%E3%82%8A%E3%81%BE%E3%81%99?srid=2Emm

September 18, 2017


Same with good morning, おはよう Or おはようございほす☺

April 30, 2018


Yeah sort of

May 27, 2019


But what specifically does で indicate?

February 14, 2019


This!!! Why has nobody answered this simple important question?!

May 4, 2019


From reading Reid's post, で and は are 'particles'. Not sure what they mean by that, but Reid did say that those two indicate what the specific word does in a sentence. I'm still trying to wrap my head around it as well.

May 30, 2019


Thanks Reid

July 30, 2017


Wow this really helps, thank you.

July 17, 2019


Why do you need both で and は? I thought you can just say "中国人はありません。"

June 11, 2017


You need it because it's part of the negation of です, the auxiliary verb "to be". In casual speech this would be ではない or じゃない (じゃ = contraction of では), and in polite speech ではありません.

Without で you would be saying something like "there are no Chinese people", and in a rather inpolite way as well, since ある (the basic form of あります) is used only for inanimate/dead objects, not people.

July 26, 2017


Commenting here to get notified when someone explains

June 21, 2017


Me too. My Japanese teacher told us ' はありません' would be correct... I guess Duolingo is putting the phrases as polite as possible.

June 24, 2017


From what I recall, Dewa arimasen(ではありませ) is like a set phrase for polite negation. Just as あります is for polite positive. That's how I understand.

July 9, 2017


Why not わたしは中国人ありません?

June 18, 2017


I think it's because you still need to establish the relationship between 中国人 and the negation. That is, ですin a negative form would be 'でわありません' or 'じゃありません'. Or じゃない if you are using an informal tone. The point is, it does not stand alone as 'ありません’. I've been taught to express that sentence in many ways, but the most aproximate to the one you wrote is 私は中国人じゃありません。

I apologize if I'm not clear enough. I'm still learning and English is not my first language. Hope this helps, anyway.

June 24, 2017


I added watashi and it got marked wrong. Is it wrong to explicitally say it?

June 17, 2017


Japanese dont say I, we, you very often. It is considered impolite.

June 30, 2017


It is correct, but I think it can be ommited because it's deduced by context.

June 24, 2017


Can someone break this down for me? Especially why there is a ん at the end of it.

June 9, 2017


N means no. Arimasu = exist, arimasen = dont exist.

June 30, 2017


The ません part marks it as a sort of negation to whatever is being said. That is why its there.

July 18, 2017


I thought "arimasu" was used for animals and inanimate objects, and not ppl. Have I simply got this wrong?

July 25, 2017


Yes, you are correct. However, this isn't a stand-alone ありません; the では part makes this a negation of です.

July 26, 2017


¿Why いいえ、わたしは中国人ではありません is wrong?

October 11, 2018


I know right? わたし= I わたしは= I am Since the answer is (No,i am not chinese ) Why shouldn't we add watashi wa?

Help! Im confused here

May 1, 2019


I also dont know. ill leave the comment so i get notified.

June 26, 2019


いいえ、私は中国人じゃない was accepted, but not mentioned very frequently. I'm guessing "janai" is the most casual (and least polite) way of negating something

December 9, 2017


When did you see じゃない? I haven't encountered that so far in the first 8 skills.

April 4, 2019


Why is あります used instead of います? I thought the latter was used when referring to anything alive.

March 3, 2019


Why does あれ belong in this sentence also? I fail to see how that would work grammatically.

August 2, 2017


is いいえ、ちゆうごくしんではありません wrong ?

April 17, 2018


It's very nearly correct, but yes, there are 2 spelling mistakes in there: in the transliteration of 中国人 you wrote "chiyuu-goku-shin" instead of "chuu-goku-jin" (ちゅうごくじん)

April 17, 2018


I thought that あります and ありません meant "there is" or "exists"? as in there is a dog. 犬があります。

September 16, 2018


Can anyone explain why dewa (では) is used instead of は or が ?

December 1, 2018


Is another way to say this, "いいえ、中国人じやないです"...? Or something close to that?

I seem to remember learning that 'じやない' is a way to say that something isn't something. An online translator seems to translate it that way, so...what's the difference? Is one of them formal vs informal or something?

May 25, 2019


I keep getting it right, but everytime I do it says "Another Correct Solution: いいえ、中国人ではありません。" I checked every symbol and I did exactly that! Do they want me to do it with the individual symbols instead of the whole 'ではありません' sentence?

May 30, 2019


Can this also be "you are not Chinese"?

May 31, 2019


It's been a loooooooong time since I took Japanese in college (and only two quarters of it), so forgive me if this is wrong, but...no.

Pretty sure you'd have to tack "あなた は" at the beginning to indicate that you're talking about 'you', talking about the person to whom you're speaking. "As for you, you are not Chinese," basically.

May 31, 2019


The audio is slightly too fast for me, can anyone give me the pronunciation for my notes?

July 10, 2019



July 18, 2019
Learn Japanese in just 5 minutes a day. For free.