Wordwatch Towers

A plain language guide to punctuation, grammar and writing well.

All right or alright?

with 4 comments

Auscultatory method aneroid sphygmomanometer w...
Image via Wikipedia

Is it all right to write ‘alright’? Disagreement reigns among grammarians. To be on the safe side, use ‘all right’ in formal writing.

‘Alright’ is perfectly OK in informal writing, unless you’re emailing a mate with grammar-related blood pressure issues.

The Oxford Dictionary of English says:

There is no logical reason for insisting on ‘all right’ as two words, when other single-word forms such as ‘altogether’ (and ‘already’) have long been accepted. Nevertheless, it is still considered by many people to be unacceptable in formal writing.

The difference between ‘altogether’ and ‘all together’

More commonly confused words


4 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. “grammar-related blood pressure issues” is a good phrase! 😆

  2. Thanks, Vikas — glad it made you smile!


    29/11/2009 at 4:19 pm

  3. “There is no logical reason for insisting on ‘all right’ ”

    This is English – as legions of baffled foreigners have discovered, logic doesn’t always feature.


    29/09/2010 at 11:22 am

Your questions and comments are welcome.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: