When my grandson Ian was four, he began to say “I amn’t” for “I am not.” It intrigued me that a child would know instinctively how to make a contraction that he had not heard before.
His contraction made sense, I thought. If the plural of “are not” is “aren’t” is it not perfectly logical that the singular of “am not” be “amn’t”?
When I saw that James Joyce used the word in The Dubliners, I assumed it was an “old” word. But I was surprised to learn that it is still used mainly in
Ireland and . Scotland
Perhaps my Irish cousins will enlighten me on this.