are not

aren't

[ahrnt, ahr-uhnt]
1.
contraction of are not.
2.
contraction of am not (used interrogatively).

Origin:
as contraction of am not, a doublet of ain't (without raising of the vowel), spelling aren't by r-less speakers; ar was later substituted for the long a by speakers who regularly pronounce pre-consonantal r


The social unacceptability of ain't, the historical contraction of am not, has created a gap in the pattern of verbal contractions. I'm not, the alternative to I ain't, has no corresponding interrogative form except ain't I. In questions, ain't I is often avoided by the use of aren't I: I'm right, aren't I? Aren't I on the list? This aren't is simply a different outcome of the same historical development that yielded ain't, but the fact that it is spelled and pronounced like the contraction of are not (as in You are staying, aren't you?) apparently gives it, for some, an acceptability that ain't lacks. The use of aren't I is objected to by others because a declarative counterpart, I aren't, does not exist. Many speakers, however, prefer aren't I to the uncontracted, rather formal am I not. See also ain't, contraction.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To are not
Collins
World English Dictionary
aren't (ɑːnt)
 
contraction of
1.  are not
2.  informal chiefly (Brit) ( used in interrogative sentences ) am not

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Etymonline
Word Origin & History

aren't
1794, a contraction of are not, originally written are'n't and generally so into early 19c.
"If 'ain't I?' is objected to, surely 'aren't I?' is very much worse." [Lady Grove, "The Social Fetich," 1907]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature