Friday, August 17, 2012

Is IRREGARDLESS a word?

No, it is not.

Despite the fact that the so-called word 'irregardless' has found its way into daily usage in English and is listed in numerous online dictionaries, it is, in fact, a word.

'Irregardless' has a negative prefix (ir-) and a negative suffix (-less), effectively cancelling out one another and resulting in the same meaning as its root, regard (to esteem or value).  'Irregardless' is not a word; it's a double negative.  And although you may hear native English speakers use it, or you may come across it in an online news article or dictionary, it is not correct.

The correct word to use is regardless, which means no matter what, despite, not taking into account certain conditions or qualities, as in the following news headlines:



  • Regardless of age, take the adventure
  • Michael Phelps: Star Will Stay Face of US Swimming Regardless of London Results

  • It will see ads placed into users news feeds regardless of whether they have 'liked' the firm

2 comments:

  1. I'd simply like to point out that your first paragraph doesn't make sense. There was no follow-up to the word `Despite` at the beginning. Removing it leaves you with "The fact that [...] does not mean that it is, in fact, a word." which makes sense.
    Alternatively, you could keep it and say "Despite the fact that [...], it is not, in fact, a word."

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes...you're right. Thanks for reading!

    ReplyDelete

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