Why is ne + plus wrapped around as instead of besoin in the following sentence:

Tu n'as plus besoin de ta voiture.

Shouldn't it be wrapped around besoin as that is the verb word?

1 Answer 1


Besoin is a noun. The verb is as (from the verb avoir). Avoir besoin is a phrasal verb (literally “to have need”), which determines its meaning, but does not change the grammar. Even if besoin was a verb form, the second negation word would still be after the auxiliary:

Tu ne manges pas tes carottes.
Tu n'a pas mangé tes carottes.

  • The first part of the answer (i.e. besoin being a noun) automatically means that the negation goes around 'as', and so my question is answered, but I don't get why the term auxiliary was used as I my sentence didn't contain any compound tenses so I am confused as to why this term (and the examples given) were used.
    – user2966
    Dec 5, 2013 at 16:37
  • Gilles is giving the general rule of the place of the negation when avoir is used, whether as verb or an auxiliary.
    – None
    Dec 6, 2013 at 7:48
  • @user2966 Even if you weren't sure whether you had a verb and a complement or an auxiliary verb and a main verb, the negation would still be in the same place. Dec 6, 2013 at 9:24

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