Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Alot and A Lot

Alot Vs A lot

It is quite surprising that many still get confused with regard to the use of ‘a lot’ and ‘alot.’ Yes, if you read through tons of entries in the Internet, you’ll notice that the two words do exist. But to set things straight, there’s no such word as ‘alot.’ There are only two duly recognized words having the nearest spellings and these words are ‘a lot’ and ‘allot.’ So why do people still confuse ‘alot’ from ‘a lot?’

Well, it might just be a matter of a simple typing error when a person accidentally skips the space bar after typing the letter ‘a.’ This doesn’t work on modern day computers though, as typing ‘alot’ will automatically separate ‘a’ from ‘lot.’

Nevertheless, since ‘alot’ is non-existent you must learn when to use the more appropriate notation ‘“ ‘a lot.’ This word (a lot) is known as a phrase (informal) that means a big quantity or portion of something. However, if this is not the word you’re looking for then most probably it is the verb form, like in the sentence ‘Please allot at least 10 minutes of rest time before the athletes resume their exercises.’ In this instance, ‘allot’ means something else (to distribute, divide or assign a part).

‘A lot’ is preferably used to describe non-countable large quantities of matter, whether it be tangible (i.e. ice, sand, water) or intangible (i.e. time). For example, ‘He doesn’t have a lot of free time to further discuss this matter.’ ‘Many’ is another word that is used in the same way as ‘a lot’ but is primarily intended for use in countable materials like notebooks, pens, etc. Hence, it is different when you say ‘She has many pens’ and ‘She has a lot of pens.’ If it’s the first example then you can still count her pens. If it’s the latter then it may be too difficult for you to count because she has lots of pens.

Lastly, ‘a lot’ can also be used like any normal adverbs, ‘He looks a lot like his father.’ If this is the case, then it would mean very often or very much.

So the next time you go on writing and you happen to stumble upon the use of either ‘a lot,’ ‘alot’ or ‘allot,’ first consider the following:

1. ‘A lot’ is an informal phrase that is used to describe a big portion of something.
2. There’s no such word as ‘alot.’ The other notation is ‘allot’ which is actually a verb that means to distribute or divide.
3. ‘A lot’ can also be used as an adverb that means very often or very much.


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