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English grammar and communications hints and tips
Is it every day or everyday?
Both of these expressions exist in British English. They do, however, have different meanings and are commonly mixed up, even by large British supermarket chains on their in-store signs!
This is used to mean that something is happening daily, as in the following examples:
- We do this every day.
- Every day, we like to contact Future Perfect.
- Available all day every day.
This is an adjective (or describing word) meaning ‘ordinary/regular’, as in the following examples:
- This is an everyday occurrence.
- It’s just an everyday event.
- It’s an everyday object.
So, how can you tell easily which one to use? By replacing the ‘day’ section with an actual day of the week, you will find out whether it is right.
Let’s take this phrase: This is available all day everyday/every day.
So, now, replace the ‘day’ section with an actual day of the week:
- This is available all day everyday. [all one word] This becomes: This is available all day everyMonday. [all one word] WRONG
- This is available all day every day. This becomes: This is available all day every Monday. [two words] RIGHT
Because you would not write ‘everyMonday’ as one word in this, so you will not write ‘every day’ as one word either!
Correct version: This is available all day every day.
This method of replacing similar parts of grammar, to help you to see things another way, is really worth remembering.
Remember, whenever you have those niggling queries going around the office (like ‘where to put this apostrophe’, ‘do we use that or which; dispatch or despatch; complimentary or complementary; practise or practice’), do just simply drop us an e-mail or call.
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