Spanish is full of contradictions that it's hard to know which is really correct without being a native speaker and having spoken it for long.

Just take negation for example. I know in Spanish negative and affirmative statements are never mixed. But no, there are exceptions to that.

If we follow the convention here:

María no necesita nada.(Maria doesn't need anything (nothing).)

We would think it is correct to say:

Ningunas vacaciones a Alaska no son completas sin una excursión a Mt. Kinley.(no vacation is (not) complete without a trip to Mt.Kinley.)

When in fact it's not correct as it is supposed to be "... son..." instead of "...no son...".

  • Negative expression constructions don't have "contradictions." There are definite rules that have to be learned properly.
    – Aprendedor
    Jun 26, 2015 at 17:57

1 Answer 1


In Spanish, we only use double negatives when the negative word comes after the verb.

For example: When saying "nobody knows", we would say "No sabe nadie" or "Nadie sabe", but not "Nadie no sabe."

  • Wait sorry I don't quite get how what you said apply to my examples. I think you are saying that nadie, kinda like the subject of a sentence comes always comes in the end. But in both of my examples, the subjects (Maria and vacationes) are in the front. I don't see any difference.
    – user11355
    Jun 20, 2015 at 23:38
  • It's not the placement of the subject. It's the placement of the negative word (nada, nadie, ningun, etc). Jun 21, 2015 at 0:24
  • Can you explain how it apply to my sentenceS?
    – user11355
    Jun 21, 2015 at 0:29
  • In the first sentence, "nada" comes after the verb "necesita", so we negate the verb. In the second sentence, "ningunas" comes before the verb "son", so we do not negate the verb. Jun 21, 2015 at 2:14

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