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No One or Noone? What About No-One?

Welcome to another installment of words in English that SEEM short and easy, but are actually very hard words to spell! Today we will be exploring the dilemma: It it two words for “no one,” or “noone” with one word? Or, wait — is there a hyphen in the middle like: “no-one?” Luckily, there is an easy answer.

Now, why trust this article? My name is Lillie and I’ve been an English teacher for 18 years — and am also a writer and artist. That means that I’ll be using my hand-sketched cute drawings to illustrate the answer to this spelling question, to make it memorable enough that you’ll always write it correctly in the future!

No one or noone
No one or noone, illustrated.

Spell No One

The correct spelling in the no one vs. noone or no-one question is that it should be spelled as TWO words with a space in the middle, like: “no one.” Above, I’ve created an illustration with a friendly sea urchin drawing to help: You can remember that there is a space between the two Os in “no one” because there is NO ONE between them!

Meanwhile, the spellings “noone” and “no-one” don’t exist, and shouldn’t be used — just like the non-word, “fourty.” If you think about it, that makes life easier, because you’d just want to awkwardly pronounce “noone” like twelve noon, rhyming with “moon.”

No one vs. noone or no-one
My self-cartoon, explaining no one vs. noone or no-one.

Two Words or One?

These “two words versus one” quandaries produce commonly confused words, because sometimes both versions are correct — they just mean different things — and sometimes one is simply misspelled. Let’s look at some examples.

Instances where both space and no-space versions are real words (that just have separate definitions) include: work out or workout, apart vs. a part, and every day vs. everyday. Now, what about instances where one version is just plain wrong?

In the case of in case or incase, “incase” is wrong and shouldn’t be used. As we saw in our “fiction vs. nonfiction article,” the word “nonfiction” is correct, and doesn’t need a space or hyphen in the middle. Finally, with every time or everytime, “everytime” is the bogus spelling that doesn’t exist in reality.

VIDEO: How to Spell No One
See a video of my illustrations for how to spell no one.

No One or Noone?

Now you know: in the no one or noone (or no-one) question, the correct spelling is “no one” — two words with a space in the middle. What other English lessons would you like me to illustrate? Do share!