Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Aloud vs. Out Loud

The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms states that "out loud" started as a colloquialism for "aloud" in 1821. At first "out loud" was frowned on, but it has worked its way into standard English, so "out loud" and "aloud" are synonyms.

If you're being especially careful, you may want to stick with "aloud" in formal writing; but "out loud" is standard and even preferred in some sayings such as "laugh out loud."

If "out loud" hadn't become a rival of "aloud," the text messaging abbreviation could have been one character shorter: "LA" instead of "LOL" but I imagine "LA" wouldn't have caught on. Los Angeles and Louisiana would not have been amused.

Source: Grammar Girl



  1. Very interesting point. I tend to use 'out loud' over 'aloud' I just assumed it was my southern roots showing. LOL

    Thoughts in Progress

  2. Mason: I use 'out loud' also. I think the majority of people do; it's the way we talk. Outside of work I've edited, in normal conversations or written correspondence, I don't see 'aloud' used much at all.

  3. You do come with some interesting things, Crystal. BTW, love the cat pics, :-)

  4. I'm like Mason...I think it's colloquial!

    Great review, Crystal. :)

  5. Sia: Thank you! You made my day!

    Carol: :)

    Elizabeth: Thank you! ♥

  6. Just yesterday, I did two separate blog comments. One used out loud and one aloud. Why? I dunno. But I did smack my head when I realized my inconsistency.

  7. Clever girl! Yeah, LA doesn't have the same ring to it.

  8. very interesting. I used "out loud" unless I'm refering to my thoughts.

    Love your purple & green "Hi" kitty!

  9. LOL!!! Thank goodness for out loud!! LA for me will always be Los Angeles!

    Take care

  10. Holly: Since they're synonyms, it's okay that you were "inconsistent!" It's awesome, though, that you recognized it! :)

    Alex: LOL! LA definitely just doesn't work, does it?

    Chris: Thanks! "Hi" kitty seemed appropriate for my blog!

    Old Kitty: I totally agree. LA will always be Los Angeles! I never even think of it in regard to Louisiana.

  11. And since I use out loud all the time, I'm glad it's acceptable!

  12. Hi Crystal,
    Love your kitty cats ;) This post is short but great! I'd better be careful when I leave messages in your blog or I'll be in trouble. As a writer, I'm supposed to be mindful of typos and grammar :( Can we writers get a break outside our niche? Especially me because my brain is always playing catch up with my fingers. Love your blog! Just became your lucky 107 follower. Hope to see you in my neighborhood.

  13. I had no idea. I just thought the two different expressions evolved in differnt places and we adopted both as more or less accurate. Thanks for sharing.

  14. Diane: Me too!

    Claudia: Thank you so much for following! (And absolutely– everyone gets a "break" when leaving comments!)

    Cassandra: Nice to see you! So glad you stopped by! :)


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