Difference between Alright and All Right

Key Difference: The terms ‘alright’ or ‘all right’ are commonly seen and are often used interchangeably. However, there is one major aspect that distinguishes ‘alright’ from ‘all right’: ‘alright’ is not a real word. It is an informal word that is often used in spite of ‘all right’.

The terms ‘alright’ or ‘all right’ are commonly seen and are often used interchangeably. The terms are actually interchangeable, and can be used as such. However, there is one major aspect that distinguishes ‘alright’ from ‘all right’: ‘alright’ is not a real word. It is an informal word that is often used in spite of ‘all right’.

Still, it should be noted that ‘alright’ is almost as old as ‘all right’, and is not a modernization of the term. Also, ‘alright’ is considered as correct and not wrong. Nevertheless, it is better to be on the safe side and use ‘all right’, at least for all formal writing.

‘Alright’ is being accepted as an informal word by most dictionaries and it is believed that it will soon become a proper word, along the lines of ‘altogether and already’.

 Both ‘alright’ and ‘all right’ indicate a proper or satisfactory condition. They show that what ever it is referring to is acceptable and allowed. For example: “It’s alright.” or “It’s all right.” It may also indicate that whatever it is referencing, it is okay, but not great.

One difference between ‘alright’ and ‘all right’ is that ‘all right’ can have two meanings, while ‘alright’ is straightforward. ‘All right’ can indicate that everything is okay or satisfactory, and it can also indicate that everything is correct, as in “My answers on the test were all right.” They were not okay, they were correct and accurate. In these kind of instance, many people like to use ‘alright’ to indicate okay or satisfactory, and ‘all right’ to indicate that ‘all is right.’ This is also the reason that some authors such as Gertrude Stein and Earnest Hemingway have preferred to use ‘alright’, instead of ‘all right’; to dispel the double meaning.

Comparison between Alright or All Right:

 

Alright

All Right

Definition (Merriam-Webster)

All Right

  • Acceptable or agreeable
  • Fairly good
  • Well enough
  • Suitable or appropriate
  • Beyond doubt

Parts of Speech

Adverb or adjective

Adjective, adverb, exclamation

Type

Informal

Formal and informal

Examples

  • Everything is alright now.
  • Alright, Alright, Alright.
  • Its alright, you can go.
  • It’s cold alright.
  • She does all right in school.
  • All right! I’ll go.
  • She is all right now.
  • We'll deal with this problem tomorrow, all right?
  • His performance was all right, but I've seen better.

Image Courtesy: en.wikipedia.org, lincoln.ac.nz

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