Meaning of ALL in English

ALL

pronoun

1

DUBIOUS : He spent all the journey talking about accidents.

GOOD : He spent the whole journey talking about accidents.

BAD : This decision changed all of her life.

GOOD : This decision changed her whole life.

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Before the singular form of a countable noun we usually use whole or entire : 'We spent the whole lesson singing songs.' 'The entire document will have to be rewritten.' Note that sometimes both all and whole/entire are possible: 'It rained the whole/all the afternoon.' In these cases, whole/entire provides greater emphasis and often express a feeling of surprise, disappointment, satisfaction etc: 'I read the whole book in just two evenings.'

2

BAD : People envy her because she is good at all.

GOOD : People envy her because she is good at everything.

BAD : Nobody understands all.

GOOD : Nobody understands everything.

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Do not use all to mean 'everything' unless it is immediately followed by a relative clause: 'Is that all she wanted to know?'

3

BAD : All of us didn't want to go to bed.

GOOD : None of us wanted to go to bed.

BAD : All companies will not tolerate lazy workers.

GOOD : No company will tolerate lazy workers.

4

BAD : We all must try to find a solution to the problem.

GOOD : We must all try to find a solution to the problem.

BAD : We all were delighted when we heard the news.

GOOD : We were all delighted when we heard the news.

5

BAD : As all you know, my name is Mary Smith.

GOOD : As you all know, my name is Mary Smith.

BAD : I've never forgotten how beautiful all it was.

GOOD : I've never forgotten how beautiful it all was.

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All of is placed immediately before a pronoun, but all is placed immediately after. Compare: 'All of them speak French.' 'They all speak French.'

6

BAD : I like all the kinds of music.

GOOD : I like all kinds of music.

BAD : All of children learn to speak naturally.

GOOD : All children learn to speak naturally.

BAD : All of the young couples need a home of their own.

GOOD : All young couples need a home of their own.

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For general reference, put all/most/some etc immediately in front of the noun: 'In Japan most people use chopsticks.'

For specific reference, use all/most/some + of the/these/their etc + noun: 'Most of the Americans I met were very friendly.'

7

BAD : I didn't like the meal and couldn't eat all.

GOOD : I didn't like the meal and couldn't eat it all.

GOOD : I didn't like the meal and couldn't eat all of it.

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Do not use all to replace a pronoun. Use all (or all of ) with a pronoun: 'She took six exams and passed them all.' 'She took six exams and passed all of them.'

8

See DURING 2 (↑ during )

9

See PEOPLE 1 (↑ people )

Longman Common Errors English vocabulary.      Английский словарь распространенных ошибок Longman.