During the taping of BookTV’s fall book preview this weekend, this GalleyCat editor unwittingly used the word “irregardless.” After the show aired, readers around the country responded with swift grammatical justice.
Despite the fact that some spell-checkers recognize the infamous word with more than one century of history, the Oxford English dictionary has a blunt entry: “Irregardless means the same as regardless, but the negative prefix ir- merely duplicates the suffix -less, and is unnecessary. The word dates back to the 19th century, but is regarded as incorrect in standard English.”
What do you think? You might be able to get away with using the word in everyday conversation, but don’t ever use the word in front of an audience of passionate readers. Once you have recovered from the grammatical shock, check out BookTV’s fall book preview–it explores a massive slate of upcoming nonfiction books.