"I told him not to touch" and "I told him to not touch" - Which is correct? I've been using with saying "NOT" before "TO", like the first sentence above. But I've seen sentences like the second one. Which is correct????
Feb 16, 2012 5:44 AM
Answers · 4
They are both correct and the first one is more popular now. But 30 or 40 years ago the second one was as popular and possibly more popular in the UK when I was growing up. I think the first one has always been the most popular choice in the USA.
February 16, 2012
There is a silly rule about not splitting infinitives, but your tests may still adhere to it. So go with the first one.
February 16, 2012
Next time, quote the sentences you read, then we can explain better. I told him not to touch. = Don't touch! I told him to not say anything. = I told him to [watch, but] not say anything. I hope the difference is clear.
February 16, 2012
Go for the first one. This is also the form sitting in modern English textbooks. Plus rhythmically, it's smoother to say.
February 16, 2012
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