What do “all right” and “alright” mean?

Although the iconic catchphrase of actor Matthew McConaughey, "All right, all right, all right," is generally recognized in popular culture, there isn't an agreement on how to utilize "all right" or "alright" in writing.‍Are all right and alright interchangeable? OK, let's get to the bottom of this, once and for all.

With only slight changes in their meanings, both variants are now recognized as legal terms in dictionaries like Merriam-Webster and Oxford. However, despite the fact that numerous writers have defended and legitimized both forms, some writers are adamant that "alright" has been erroneous for more than a century and still is.


Below are a few examples of how the various forms of “alright” and “all right” are used in sentences.

“All right” in a sentence

Adverb: “My choir recital went all right, but I almost forgot the lyrics.”

Adjective: “I feel all right to try out for the solo part again, though.” 

Affirmative statement: “All right! I heard you the first time.” 

“Alright” in a sentence

Adverb: “Is the temperature alright?”

Adjective: “I wonder if Katsu is alright at doggy daycare. It’s his first time. ”

Exclamatory statement: “Alright! Time to head to the restaurant?”


The English language is constantly evolving, and historically, words frequently had a variety of forms before being standardized, leading to the current two variants of this term. For instance, the words "altogether," "all-together," and "altogether" were originally used interchangeably.

Depending on the context and writing style, the two-word spelling "all right" can have a variety of meanings. "All right" can be an adjective or an adverb to denote "sufficient" or "adequate." Additionally, it can be employed as an affirmation that conveys "correctness."

The 1865 publication of Mark Twain's short story "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County" is credited with giving rise to the phrase "alright." Alright can be a one-word exclamation akin to "OK," or it can be used as an adverb to signify "well." You can also download our app from the playstore or visit our website.