Saturday, May 31, 2008

supposedly is supposably incorrect?

yes. it's incorrect, but not in the way some people might think. i have found (much to my chagrin) that supposably is an actual word...but, to my unrelenting joy, it is not what people think it is. confused? well, here are the definitions:

(click the images to make them larger and, therefore, legible, which is the whole point, right?)



[images snapped from m-w.com]

the problem is, most people who say supposably mean it as supposedly. as in, "he supposably had the 24-hour flu, which is why he called in sick yesterday." this misuse makes my skin crawl (which is actually the same reaction i have when i hear the word irregardless). in looking up the prickly word, my favorite discovery was this:



i felt such satisfaction when i found that. and, upon further investigation, i found that we are not the only people to blog about this.


[image snapped from languagerules.wordpress.com]

are you happy now, rachelle? :)

12 comments:

rachelle said...

i'm very happy now, ade.
i really, really hate that supposably is considered a word. i hate it. and i wish i could rid the world of it, but i can't.
i just don't have the time.

Cris said...

I'm happy too. I just had a huge debate with a co-worker (which caused me to second guess myself). Vindication feels amazing!

ejmacpherson said...

Thank you, this is much appreciated!

Anonymous said...

so supposably is a word? it's just many people use it incorrectly?

Anonymous said...

Hallelujah!!!!! I am soooo glad that I am RIGHT! I have been correcting people for about 25 years now. Ever since I left Pennsylvania and moved to Texas. I had never heard the word until I moved to Texas. Now I will have to memorize the reason why THEY ARE WRONG and start reciting it. I actually thought supposably wasn't even a word (and I wish it wasn't). It makes the speaker sound stupid! Now I can debate it!

Anonymous said...

It drives me crazy when I hear someone say supposably. The word is supposedly. But even worse is when someone says "aks" instead of "asks." And the other thing that makes me upset, is when I hear double negatives: "don't tell me no more." or "I don't like them no more." The word is "any"

All examples of the uneducated, simple minded asses who don't read books.

Andrew said...

It's kind of surprising that there are at least this many people even, who feel that same way about mispronounced and made up words. Some of my all time "un"favorites are "expecially," and "expresso," along with the afore mentioned "irregardless," and "supposably."

Anonymous said...

The cow SUPPOSEDLY jumped over the moon. However, a cow couldn't SUPPOSABLY jump over the moon.

Is it correct to use the word "supposably" as you the word "possibly"? I believe so.

Anonymous said...

Im amused that a random forum post from '06 was cited as saying "supposably is not a word"; when, in fact, it is listed in the webster dictionary as an adverb. it IS a word, as is anything you put together with an understandable prefix-suffix combination. I'm done, I just wanted to consumate with preposition.

Anonymous said...

Someone found a thesaurus, lol. It is refreshing however, to see that there are still people out there who use proper English. The proper grammar and spelling is an added bonus. On another day I might have thought of something clever to write but am too tired tonight. For some odd reason, before bed, I Googled “suppose” and came across this. Again, I am glad I did.

Anonymous said...

Thank you! I heard someone say "supposably" today in a situation where I couldn't correct him. This makes it more bearable.
Also, how about "eksetera"--does that make anyone else's skin crawl?

Lady Aldornia said...

What annoys me is the fact that you are complaining about grammar when you fail to use capitalization.