Location: Kansai Dialect Self-study Site / Ch4. Functional Grammar / 2 Negative Permission & Obligation / 2 Grammar Notes /

2. Vな/Vんと “Unless…”

Summary of “Unless”

V(negative stem) なくては(〜なくちゃ)
V(negative stem) なければ(〜なきゃ)
V(negative stem) + な
V (short negative) + と

There are two ways to express “unless ~”  in Kansai, V(negative stem) + な and V (short negative) + と . (Remember that whether in Kansai or in Standard,  these patterns regularly occur only when the clause that follows is negative – if not in form, at least in connotation!)

Vなければー>V(negative stem) +な (pronounced with low pitch) ()べな、()な、()まな、(かえ)らな、()わな、しな/せな、()


(ST  (はや)く出なきゃ、電車に間に合わないよ。)

Vないとー>Vん (V short negative) + と (pronounced with high pitch) 食べんと、出んと、飲まんと、帰らんと、買わんと、しんと/せんと、()んと


(ST 英語も長い間しゃべらないと、忘れるもんだねえ。)

When it comes to noun + copula and adjectives, either と/たら conditional form is used for this purpose.

(ST 明日はスキーだから、雪じゃなくちゃ困るの。)

(あたら)(うち)は、もうちょっと(やす)ないと買われへんわ。(買えへんわ in Kyoto)

(ST 新しい家は、もうちょっと安くなくちゃ買えないよ。)

Extra 1:  FOUR possible meanings of Vんと

When you hear the Vん (V short negative) + と expression in Kansai, there are four possibilities in meaning – (1)“Without ~ing”, (2) “Unless…”, (3) command, or (4) negative command! To distinguish those, rely on the accent pattern as well as the context.

 (1) “Without ~ing” (Negative-てform  =Vないで)
勉強(べんきょう)んと()てしもた。(と:low pitch)

(ST 勉強しないで寝ちゃった。)

(2) “Unless….” (=Vなくては、Vなければ、Vないと)
勉強せんと漢字(かんじ)(わす)れるもんやな。(と: high pitch)

(ST 勉強しなくちゃ漢字も忘れるものだね。)

(3) Command (when used at the sentence ending)
いつまで()きてんの。はよ寝んと。(と:high pitch)

(ST いつまで起きてるの?(はや)く寝なさい。)

(4) Negative Command ( refer to Extra 3 in Lesson 1 of Chapter 4)
こたつでんと!風邪引(かぜひ)くで!(と:low pitch)

(ST こたつで寝ないで!風邪引くよ。)

You probably realized that there are two groups of Nんと : those pronounced with high pitch as in (1) and (4) mean “without~ (do something else),” and those pronounced with low pitch as in (2) and (3) mean “unless (you do it, something bad will happen).”

Please refer to Grammar 5 in Ch3 Lesson 2 for more explanations on (1) .

Extra 2: Vんことには

Vんことには is the same as Vんと that means “unless…” and is used mostly by the older generation.


(ST 外国語は、やっぱり外国に行かなくちゃしゃべれるようにはならないよ。)