All Ready or Already?

by Craig Shrives

The Difference between "All ready" and "Already"

"All ready" and "already" are easy to confuse because they sound identical.
  • "All ready" means completely prepared. For example:
    • The team members are all ready.
    • (Note that "all ready" can be replaced with just "ready." "All ready" is more emphatic.)
  • "Already" means prior to a specified time. For example:
    • We have finished the task already.

Ready for the Test?

More about "Already" and "All Ready"

The terms "all ready" and "already" sound identical and are sometimes confused.

all ready or already difference

All Ready

"All ready" means "completely prepared." It is more emphatic than just "ready," but - grammatically - it can be replaced with "ready."

Here are some examples of "all ready" in sentences:
  • Lillian is all ready. Mark is prepared to brief.
  • (Most readers would assume Lillian's state of preparedness to be higher than Mark's.)
  • Make sure everyone is all ready by 9 o'clock.

Already

"Already" is an adverb meaning "prior to a specified or implied time" or "as early as now."

Here are some examples of "already" in sentences:
  • It is already illegal to culture human-animal embryos for more than fourteen days.
  • ("already" = since before now)
  • When they pulled the shark up in the net it was already dead.
  • ("already" = since before then)
  • The wild Hepatica Nobilis flowers are already blooming. This is one month earlier than last year.
  • ("already" = as early as now)

Top Tip

Top Tip: "All Ready" Equals "Ready"

"Ready" can replace "all ready" but not "already."

Try to use just "ready." If your sentence still makes sense, then you are safe to use "all ready"; otherwise, use "already." For example:
  • Jean is all ready.
    (Try the substitution: Jean is ready.
  • (As "ready" sounds okay, "all ready" is correct.)

  • I have already seen this film.
  • (Try the substitution: I have ready seen this film.
    (As "ready" sounds wrong, "all ready" must be wrong. So, "already" is correct.)

More about "All Ready"

Of course, the word "all" (when used as an indefinite pronoun with a meaning similar to "everyone") can precede "ready."

Example:
  • Is John ready? Is Jane ready? Are you ready? Are you all ready?
  • Yes, we are all all ready.
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See Also

adverse or averse? affect or effect? appraise or apprise? avenge or revenge? bare or bear? complement or compliment? dependant or dependent? discreet or discrete? disinterested or uninterested? e.g. or i.e.? envy or jealousy? imply or infer? its or it's? material or materiel? poisonous or venomous? practice or practise? principal or principle? How to write "dos and don'ts" who's or whose? What are adverbs? Common errors in writing Easily confused words

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