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Difference between all together or altogether?

all together or altogether

The English language is replete with words and phrases that sound similar but carry distinct meanings. “All together” and “altogether” are prime examples, often causing confusion among speakers and writers. This article aims to demystify these terms, shedding light on their proper usage, meanings, and origins, ensuring you can confidently differentiate between them in any context.

AspectAll TogetherAltogether
MeaningIn a group; collectivelyCompletely; entirely
UsageRefers to unity or simultaneous actionRefers to an overall extent or sum
Part of SpeechPhraseAdverb
Example SentenceWe sang all together at the concert.It was altogether a fantastic evening.

Difference Between “All Together” and “Altogether”

Definition of All Together

All together" refers to a group acting in unison or being in a single place. It emphasizes collective action or assembly, often used to describe simultaneous activity or gathering of people, objects, or elements.

Definition of Altogether

"Altogether," an adverb, conveys the sense of entirely, wholly, or on the whole. It is used to summarize or indicate a total effect, often in the context of evaluating situations, conditions, or experiences as a whole.

Origin of All Together

The phrase “all together” has been used in English for centuries, originating from the Old English words “eall” (all) and “tōgædere” (together), which described a collective or unified action.

Origin of Altogether

“Altogether” also dates back to Old English, derived from “eall” (all) and “tōgædere” (together), but evolved to take on a summarizing or totalizing meaning over time.

Pronunciation

  • All Together: /ɔːl təˈɡeðər/
  • Altogether: /ˌɔːltəˈɡeðər/

Comparing All Together and Altogether

Understanding the distinction between “all together” and “altogether” is crucial for correct usage. “All together” is used when referring to a group’s collective action or presence, emphasizing the concept of unity or simultaneity. “Altogether,” however, is concerned with the idea of totality or entirety, offering a summary perspective or indicating a complete state.

synonyms for all together

Usage in Sentences with Explanations

Use of All Together in Sentences

  1. Let’s take a photo with everyone all together.
    • Suggests gathering everyone in one place for a photo, emphasizing group unity.
  2. We decided to move the tables all together to create more space.
    • Indicates the action of moving the tables was done as a collective effort.
  3. The choir sang all together, creating a beautiful harmony.
    • Highlights the simultaneous action of singing in unity.
  4. Put all the pieces all together, and you’ll see the full picture.
    • Advises assembling the pieces as a group to understand the complete image.
  5. Can we all work all together to finish the project on time?
    • Calls for a unified effort to achieve a goal.

Use of Altogether in Sentences

  1. The plan was altogether abandoned due to unforeseen circumstances.
    • Implies the plan was completely given up.
  2. Her performance was altogether remarkable.
    • Evaluates the performance as being entirely or wholly remarkable.
  3. Altogether, there were 50 participants at the conference.
    • Summarizes the total number of participants.
  4. It’s altogether a different situation than what we expected.
    • Indicates a complete or total difference from expectations.
  5. Removing that feature is altogether a bad idea.
    • Suggests that removing the feature is entirely or completely a bad decision.

Conclusion

The key to using “all together” and “altogether” correctly lies in understanding their distinct meanings and contexts. “All together” emphasizes collective action or presence, suitable for describing group activities or unified efforts. “Altogether,” however, provides a sense of totality or entirety, ideal for summarizing situations or expressing complete states or judgments. Recognizing these differences ensures precise and effective communication.

usage of altogether

Commonly Asked Questions

Q: Can “all together” and “altogether” be used interchangeably? A: No, they serve different purposes and should be used in their respective contexts to convey the intended meaning accurately.

Q: Is “altogether” considered formal or informal? A: “Altogether” is appropriate for both formal and informal contexts, depending on its usage in a sentence.

Q: How can I remember the difference between “all together” and “altogether”? A: Think of “all together” as referring to a group’s collective action or presence, while “altogether” means completely or in total.

FAQ

What is the difference between “all together” and “altogether”?

“All together” refers to everyone or everything being in the same place or time as a group, emphasizing a collective action or presence. “Altogether” is an adverb that means “completely” or “all things considered,” indicating a comprehensive or total state.

What is the meaning of “all together”?

“All together” means everyone or everything being in the same place or time as a group, emphasizing a collective action or presence.

What is the meaning of “altogether”?

“Altogether” is an adverb that means “completely” or “all things considered,” indicating a comprehensive or total state.

Are there any synonyms for “all together”?

Yes, synonyms for “all together” include “collectively,” “in unison,” “simultaneously,” or “as a whole.”

Can you provide examples of using “all together”?

Certainly! Here are some examples:
– We went all together to the party.
– They put all the tickets together in a wallet.
– After the reception, you should all come together to the garden.

Are there any synonyms for “altogether”?

Yes, synonyms for “altogether” include “entirely,” “completely,” “wholly,” or “thoroughly.”

Can you provide examples of using “altogether”?

Absolutely! Here are some examples:
– Some of the professor’s lecture is altogether impossible to understand.
– Altogether, we can say that our team couldn’t have gotten a better result.
– It’s less expensive to buy a computer part by part; you can save a few hundred dollars altogether.

Are there any differences between the usage of “all together” and “altogether” in US English and UK English?

While the meanings of “all together” and “altogether” remain the same, there might be slight variations in usage and frequency between US English and UK English. It is advisable to consult specific style guides or language references for the English variant you are writing in to ensure accurate usage.

Jessica Smith

Jessica Smith

Jessica Smith, writer at TexTribe.co.uk, blends creativity with insight, exploring technology, culture, and psychology. With a background in English Literature, she crafts engaging stories inspired by nature and urban life. Outside writing, she enjoys exploring and continuous learning.View Author posts

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