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English definition of “all”

all

adverb     /ɔːl/ US  /ɑːl/
A2 completely : The cake was all eaten last night . The downstairs rooms were painted all in greens and blues . The baby got food all over her dress . Don't let her get you all upset . She's been all over town looking for you. I've been hearing all about your weekend ! We had a difficult time but it's all over now. The princess lived all alone /by her self in the middle of the forest .Complete and wholeVery and extreme B1 used after a number to mean that both teams or players in a game have equal points : The score at half-time was still four all.Both, all, each and every all but C2 almost : The game was all but over by the time we arrived . I'd all but given up on you.AlmostMerely and barely all round UK (US all around) in every way: It was a ghastly business all round. It's been a good day all around.Both, all, each and every all the better, stronger, more exciting, etc. C2 even or much better , stronger , more exciting , etc.: She felt all the better for the drink . I've lost ten kilos and I feel all the fitter for it.Very and extremeComplete and wholeIntensifying expressions 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 adverb from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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