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Nicht or Nichts

Could somebody please explain to me the difference between nicht and nichts and when to use each one?

March 13, 2013



"nicht "= not, "nichts" = nothing/not anything. If you know that, you will see the use is very similar to English:
Es ist nicht schlecht. = It is not bad.
Nichts ist schlecht. = Nothing is bad.
Ich möchte nicht essen. = I do not want to eat.
Ich möchte nichts essen. = I do not want to eat anything.
Hope you find this helpful!


I encountered this sentence recently:

  • Ich kann nichts sein, was ich nicht bin.

It was translated as "I can't be something I'm not", but literally it's "I can nothing be what I not am", or in grammatical English, "I can be nothing that I am not".


Thats really helpful thanks! I think I understand now :)

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