All Is or All Are? Which is correct?

Singular and plural words are difficult to get right. You have to make sure the words in the sentence are all in agreement with each other. One agreement that’s a bit tricky is the debate between “all is” and “all are”. So which one is correct?

Both “all is” and “all are” are correct. However, whether or not you’re using them correctly depends on the sentence. “All is” is attached to sentences that have a singular noun the “all is” is describing. “All are” is attached to a sentence that has a plural noun that the “all are” is describing.

The rest of this article will cover what all is means, and what all are means.

What “All Is” Means

All is describes a singular word. Singular means a single noun, such as “cat” or “soup”. “All is” is the phrase you would attach to a singular noun.

For example, if you want to describe a noun like “cat” using “all is”, you can do something like this: “All the cat is doing is sleeping”. Notice how the “all” gets “is” instead of “are”. This is how you would properly use “all is” in a sentence.

All is can never be used on plural words. Think of the “is” and “are” rules you know. “Is” is attached to singular nouns, and “are” is attached to plural ones. These rules are called the subject-verb and subject-object agreement.

To explain this rule, look at this sentence: “The women are bored”. Since “women” is plural, it gets “are”. However, look at this sentence now: “The woman is bored”. Now since the noun (woman) is singular, it can take “is” instead of are. This is how “all is” and “all are” works too.

What “All Are” Means

All are describes a plural word. Plural means multiple, like “cats” or “soups”. Typically, plural words are marked with an “s” ending, so they’re easy to spot. “All are” is the phrase you would attach to a plural noun when you’re grouping them together.

Here is an example using “cats”: “All the cats are sleeping”. In this instance, since “cats” is plural, you have to attach “are” to it. To summarize: if your noun is singular, you use “all is”, but if your noun is plural, you use “all are”.