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Using Negatives for Emphasis
We know that sentences with words such as no, not or nothing show the absence of something, or contradict something.
(a) This year we will have no corn.
      (Corn will be absent)

(b) The hail has left nothing.
      (Absence of a crop)

(c) These aren’t raindrops falling from the sky, they are new coins.
      (Contradicts the common idea of what the drops of water falling from the sky are)
But sometimes negative words are used just to emphasise an idea.
Look at these sentences from the story:
(d) Lencho...had done nothing else but see the sky towards the north-east.
     (He had done only this)
(e) The man went out for no other reason than to have the pleasure of feeling the rain on his body.
      (He had only this reason)

(f) Lencho showed not the slightest surprise on seeing the money.
     (He showed no surprise at all)
Now look back at example (c). Notice that the contradiction in fact serves to emphasise the value or usefulness of the rain to the farmer.