Carnap famously held the view that the only sensible interpretation of the word 'nothing' is as a negative existential quantifier. This view, virtually unquestioned for most of the Twentieth Century, has been taken to make hash of the millennial debate on the notion of nothingness. More recently, the view has been challenged on various grounds. Is 'nothing' ever a name? Referring to what? A predicative expression? A description? In this article I retrace Severino's considerations on this issue, illustrating how and why the notion of nothing is indeed peculiarly paradoxical.