until: ✓ until + AFFIRMATIVE ✗ until + NEGATIVE

By | October 17, 2016
until + NEGATIVE
A man doesn’t know what he knows until he knows what he doesn’t know.
Un uomo non sa cosa sa finché non sappia cosa non sa.
- Laurence J. Peter
✓ I’m going to study it again and again until I understand it.
✗ I’m going to study it again and again until I *don't* understand it.
Lo studierò e lo ristudierò finché non lo capirò.
Be careful! In English, unlike Italian, we generally don’t use a negative verb after until. Some more examples:
✓ Don’t start until I tell you to.
✗ Don't start until I *don't* tell you to.
Non cominciate finché non ve lo dico.
✓ You can’t use your car until you’ve paid the fine.
Non puoi usare la macchina finché non avrai pagato la multa.
On a separate grammar note, notice that we don't use future forms after until.
It is possible to use until with a negative verb to speak about situations which finished in the past. For example:
✓ I ran until I couldn’t run any more.
Ho corso finché non ero più in grado di correre.

Now try the quiz below! There are FIVE answers. The pass mark is 100% (5 out of 5). Click on the blue arrows to go to the next or previous question. You can check your answers immediately or when you've finished the quiz.

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