All Together vs. Altogether: A Grammar Lesson

You know that moment when you’re writing away and all of a sudden you can’t remember simple things? Like than or then? I once wrote an entire high school AP English paper without using than. To which my very patient teacher asked me, just how late were you up writing this paper? Of course, my answer was much too late.I didn’t get to rewrite the paper, but I have yet to forget than and then again.

I had a similar experience this morning. Out of nowhere, I couldn’t remember the difference between all together and altogether. Luckily, the AP Stylebook and this wonderful website fixed my confusion.

All together is an adverb and means a group.

Altogether is also an adverb and means completely and totally. It also means considering everything.

Looking this up reminded me of an elementary school lesson on this topic, all together means we (from the together) and we means a group. Only a group of things, people, etc. can get all together.