December 5, 2022

Modal Auxiliary Verbs

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Unlike the standard auxiliary verbs "have" and "be," modal auxiliary verbs like "must," "can" and "should" have special properties.

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'Alright' isn't quite 'all right'
Posted by June on December 5, 2022

Style guides, notably the Associated Press Stylebook, have long considered “alright” an error: the correct spelling should be “all right,” they say.

But if you're not following a style guide, "alright" isn't so bad. Merriam-Webster is okay with it. Webster's New World College Dictionary calls it a "disputed spelling" of "all right." American Heritage dictionary calls it nonstandard.

So if you want a safe choice, go with "all right." Otherwise, "alright" is alright.

June Casagrande is a writer and journalist whose weekly grammar/humor column, “A Word, Please,” appears in community newspapers in California, Florida, and Texas. more

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