Negative Time Spent

To express “for how long you haven’t been doing something”, we use the structure “S + (有) + Time Spent + 没/不 + Verb +了” in Chinese. 有(yǒu) is often omitted in the sentence.

1. Sentence final 了 = up to the present time.

S Time Spent V-O
yǒu yígèxīngqī méi chīzǎocān le.
一个星期 吃早餐 了。

He hasn't had breakfast for a week.

zhègeqǐgài yǒu liǎnggèxīngqī méi xǐzǎo le.
这个乞丐 两个星期 洗澡 了。

The beggar has not taken a shower for two weeks.

We often use a Time Word at the beginning of the sentence to specify when the time was spent.

Time Word S Time Spent V-O (了)
jīnnián yǒu liùgèyuè méi huíjiāle.
今年 六个月 回家了。

I haven't been at home for six months this year.

shànggèxīngqī yǒu sāntiān méi shàngkè.
上个星期 三天 上课。

He was absent from class for three days last week.

shànggèyuè nàjiāfàndiàn yǒu èrshítiān méi kāimén.
上个月 那家饭店 二十天 开门。

The restaurant was closed for twenty days last month.

Have a question? Join us in the discussion below!