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07 / 04 / 2010

AIN'T and WORTH: meaning and examples

Good morning.

Today we answer a question that we received from one of our readers.

Good morning, Matthew. First of all, I want to let you know that I read your Daily Vitamin with great interest everyday. It is very useful. I would like you to explain (because I admit that I have always had problems with these words) the meaning and usage of
Thank you very much in advance. Nuria

Rather than go into detail about worth here, I will simply refer you to past Daily Vitamins about this word. We did a series last year in June/July. Just go to the Daily Vitamin section on our website and put the word worth in the search box in the top left-hand side of the screen. If after reading these Daily Vitamins you still have questions, let me know and I will expand.

Ain't is an informal (non-standard) contraction for AM NOT or IS NOT. According to the standard rules of English, you cannot form a contraction with these two words. However, some dialects use it, especially in oral speech.

Example 1 (standard):
I refuse to go to that party. I am not going no matter what you say.

Example 2 (informal):
I refuse to go that that party. I ain't going no matter what you say.

Example 3 (standard):
He is not going to the party.

Example 4 (informal):
He ain't going to the party.

You should remember that this contraction (both spoken and written) is generally considered "incorrect" or "improper" English. In some dialects you can also hear people using ain't to replace "are not", "has not" and even "do/does not".

I hope that helps Nuria. If you have any questions about today's Daily Vitamin, please post your comments by clicking on the "Add a Comment" button in the Daily Vitamin section on our website (

Have a great day!