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English definition of “all”


determiner, predeterminer, pronoun     /ɔːl/ US  /ɑːl/
A1 every one (of), or the complete amount or number (of), or the whole (of): All animals have to eat in order to live . She's got four children , all under the age of five. The cast all lined up on stage to take their bow . Have you drunk all (of) the milk ? Have you drunk it all? All the eggs got broken . Now the money's all mine! All my friends agree . I've been trying all day / week to contact you. She had £2,000 under the bed and the thieves took it all. I had to use all my powers of persuasion to get her to agree . Remember all that trouble we had with the police last year ? So long as he's happy - that's all that matters (= the most important thing). All (= the only thing) I need is a roof over my head and a decent meal . The judge cleared the court of all but (= everyone except) herself and the witness . Why do you get so angry with me all the time (= very often)? It's very kind of you to come all the way to meet me.Both, all, each and every all in all considering all the different parts of the situation together: All in all, I think you've done very well.General all the... you have the only and small amount or number of something you have: Her parents died when she was a baby , so I was all the family she ever had.General words for size and amount Grammar:AllGrammar:All as a determinerAll means ‘every one’, ‘the complete number or amount’ or ‘the whole’. We use it most often as a determiner. We can use a countable noun or an uncountable noun after it:Grammar:All with no articleWhen all refers to a whole class of people or things, we don’t use the:Grammar:All ofWe use all of before personal pronouns (us, them), demonstrative pronouns (this, that, these, those) and relative pronouns (whom, which). The personal pronoun is in the object form:Grammar:All without ofWe use all, not all of, before indefinite plural nouns referring to a whole class of people or things:Grammar:All with personal pronounsWhen all refers to a personal pronoun which is the object in a clause, we can use pronoun + all or all of + pronoun. The pronoun is in the object form:Grammar:All as a pronounWe can use all alone as a pronoun in formal situations:Grammar:All as an adverbWhen all refers to the subject of a clause, it usually comes in the normal mid position for adverbs (between the subject and the main verb, or after the modal verb or first auxiliary verb, or after be as a main verb):Grammar:All meaning ‘completely’ or ‘extremely’We can also use all as an adverb meaning ‘completely’ or ‘extremely’, especially in informal styles:Grammar:All: not allWe can make all negative by using not in front of it:Grammar:All: after allWe use after all in two main ways. We use it to mean ‘in spite of what happened before’. With this meaning it usually occurs in end position:Grammar:All or every?All and every are determiners.Grammar:All and every + nounsThe meaning of all and every is very similar but we use them in different ways. We use all with plural and uncountable nouns and every with singular nouns:Grammar:All (of) theWe can use all and all of before articles (the, a/an), demonstratives (this, that) and possessives (our, his) but we can’t use every before them:Grammar:All day, every dayWe use all day, all week, all month to mean ‘one entire day/week/month’:Grammar:All or every: typical errorsGrammar:All or whole?All and whole are determiners.Grammar:All or whole for single entitiesWe use the whole or the whole of to refer to complete single things and events that are countable and defined:Grammar:All the with uncountable nounsWe use all the and not the whole with uncountable nouns:Grammar:All and whole with plural nounsWe usually use all the and all of the with plural nouns:Grammar:All and whole: typical errors
(Definition of all determinerpredeterminerpronoun from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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