Why “Willn’t” Isn’t Used While it Makes More Sense

Ahmad Zabir
3 min readSep 21, 2020
Photo by Waldemar Brandt on Unsplash


First of all, we come to the term “contractions”. Contractions are simple, shortened words that are mostly used in informal speech and writings. The most common contractions are: haven’t — have not, she’d -she had, they aren’t — they are not, could’ve — could have, she’ll — she will and so on. To form a contraction, you just have to join two words, drop out some letters, and put an apostrophe to indicate the place where the letters have been dropped out but the case is not same when it comes to the contraction of “will not.”

Why Willn’t Is Not A Word

The contracted form of will not is “won’t”. Now the question arises why aren’t we using “willn’t” as a contracted form of “will not?” Or why “willn’t” is not a word? The answer is quite simple that we are just following the changes that our linguistic ancestor had made. But still, there is a reason for “willn’t” not being a word.

The word “won’t” is a contracted form based on the older way of “will not”. Back in the time it was still not decided how to write or pronounce the modal verb which is known as “will” nowadays. Earlier it was written as “wil” in present form and “wold” in the past form. But still, over the next few centuries at different times and places, the word “will” came out as wulle, wool, woll, welle, wile, wel, will, ull and even ool. Finally the usage of “will” word won over the others and was accepted to be used as modal verb

While the word “will” was selected as modal verbs. People were still looking over to express the negative form of will. Although the word “not” was added by the speakers in whatever form they were using earlier like: woll, will, wel, welle, ool etc. but later the preferred words were wonnot, winnot, wunnot, and willnot. But here the word “wonnot” won over the other forms. Later “wonnot” was contracted further to forms like “wo’not” and afterwards it became “won’t” which we use today.

So “won’t” is a contraction which has the same meaning as “will not.” The placement of the apostrophe where the letters have been omitted, clearly indicates that “won’t” is the contracted form of “wonnot.” Now the question arises that how the usage of “won’t” surpassed the use of “willnot”. That’s because “won’t” is easier to pronounce than “willn’t.” We mostly rely on contractions all the time in our normal conversations to create a colloquial tone. The usage of contractions gives us an impression that by doing so it will save our time so why would someone strain themselves to pronounce a word ending in 3 consonants rather than 2? That’s why “won’t” become the most preferred word use by the speakers rather than “willn’t.” There is nothing confusing about “willn’t” not being a word, it’s just another weird fact about English Language.

Ahmad Zabir

Persuasive Storyteller | Shaping Brands | Startup & Career Consultant | Ecommerce & Sales Specialist | SEO & SMM Analyst | Director Contwre