Welcome to one of the easiest — yet most frequently confused — English lessons around! Today, we explore the question: Is the correct spelling “every time” or “everytime?”
Is it two words with a space, or one word with no space? This has a simple answer (like our exploration of the misspelled word, “freind,” but there’s a reason it’s so tricky to remember.
Correct Use of “Every Time”
The definition of the phrase “every time” is: “each instance of,” or “without exception.” An example sentence would be: “Every time I try to spell the word “dilemma”, I mix up the letters and get it wrong!”
Is “Everytime” Correct Spelling?
So here’s the thing: The word “everytime” DOES NOT EXIST. It is simply an incorrect spelling, and thus doesn’t mean anything. Don’t use it! “Every time” needs to be spelled as two separate words with a space between them EVERY TIME you use it.
It’s Like “A lot vs. Alot”
Another phrase which has a similar pattern is “a lot,” which needs to ALWAYS be spelled as two words, with a space in between. Just as the word “Everytime” doesn’t exist, “Alot” is also just an incorrect misspelling, like “greatful” or “truely.”
The “incase or in case” question is the same: “Incase” as one word is simply wrong, while “in case” is correct. Similarly, with “no one or noone,” the correct spelling is “no one,” as two words, while “noone” is wrong.
Why “Every Time or Everytime” is Confusing
Here is why the “every time or everytime” quandary is so confusing: There ARE a number of words in the English language which DO have versions which are correct (though with different definitions) whether they are spelled as one word or two. See the following examples, and feel free to click through any link to my longer article about it.
Phrases that DO Exist as One or Two Words
“Apart vs. A part“ – “Apart” means separate from, while “a part” means part of. Though these words sound the same, they’re essentially opposites!
“Everyday vs. Every Day“ – “Everyday” is an adjective describing something that’s used frequently. In contrast, “Every day” means every single day.
“Workout or Work Out“ – A “Workout” is a noun indicating a specific session of exercise. Meanwhile, to “work out” is a verb (action word) meaning DOING a session of exercise.
Notice how those sets of words are homophones: words that sound the same but are spelled differently and have different meanings? Both the one and two-word options exist — they just have changed definitions and usages once the space is added or removed.
Unfortunately for poor little “everytime,” it does not fall into that category. It is just plain wrong. Sorry, everytime! You don’t exist — just like the common misspelling, “ninty.”
VIDEO: Is Every Time One or Two Words?
Every Time or Everytime in Sum
I hope you enjoyed this “every time or everytime” lesson! It should be clear now that EVERY TIME you use “every time,” it needs to be written as two separate words — no exceptions — because the word “everytime” does not exist — just like “flys” or “irrevelant.”
In closing, I am very glad that you and I DO exist. Have a great day, and let me know in the comments if you have any questions or new illustrated lesson requests!
The author and artist, Lillie Marshall, is a National Board Certified Teacher of English who has been a public school educator since 2003, and an experienced Reiki practitioner since 2018. All art on this site is original and hand-drawn by Lillie. She launched DrawingsOf.com Educational Cartoons in 2020, building upon the success of her other sites, AroundTheWorldL.com (established 2009), TeachingTraveling.com (founded 2010), and ReikiColors.com. Subscribe to Lillie’s monthly newsletter, and follow @WorldLillie on social media to stay connected!