The Alternative English Dictionary: alright

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Entry definition

alright Alternative forms: all right, aight (AAVE), awright, oright etymology From all + right. Compare Old English eallriht, equivalent to al + right. pronunciation
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adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. nonstandard form of all right Satisfactory; okay; in acceptable order.
    • 1662 : Cantus, songs and fancies, to three, four, or five parts, both apt for voices and viols : with a brief introduction to musick, as is taught by Thomas Davidson, in the Musick-School of Aberdene by Thomas Davidson, iii. sig. B/1 Where ever I go, both to and fro You have my heart alright.
    • 1922 : by , chapter 18 …if I went by his advices every blessed hat I put on does that suit me yes take that thats alright the one like a wedding cake standing up miles off my head…
    • 1932 : "Goodbye, Christ" by You did alright in your day, I reckon— But that day's gone now.
    • 1939 : by , chapter 1.40 Bladyughfoulmoecklenburgwhurawhorascortastrumpapornanennykocksapastippatappatupperstrippuckputtanach, eh? You have it alright.
    • 2000 : House of Leaves by , page 105 "You're alright Johnny," she said in a way that actually made him feel alright. At least for a little while.
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (informal) Used to indicate acknowledgement or acceptance; OK
  2. (UK, informal) Generic greeting.
  • Some distinguish between "alright" and "all right" by using "alright" to mean "fine, good, okay" and "all right" to mean "all correct". Alternatively (or in addition to the previous), "Alright" may be used as an interjection à la "OK", whilst "all right" used in the sense of "unharmed, healthy".
  • The Oxford English Dictionary notes that, while analogous forms exist in words such as "already," "altogether," and "always," "the contracted form is strongly criticized in the vast majority of usage guides, but without cogent reasons.""all right, adv., adj., int., and n.". OED Online. September 2012. Oxford University Press. 4 October 2012 <[]>.
  • The contracted term is considered nonstandard by Garner's Modern American Usage and American Heritage Dictionary. Other dictionaries consider it incorrect or less correct than all right.
Synonyms: (satisfactory) acceptable, adequate, fine, good enough, OK/okay, passable, satisfactory, sufficient, suitable, (greeting) see

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