All in All: Definition, Meaning and Origin

Last Updated on
June 7, 2023

The phrase "all in all" is a common idiomatic expression in English that denotes considering everything or on the whole. It's generally used to provide a summary or an overall view of a situation.

In short:

"All in all" means considering all aspects of a situation or taking everything into account.

What Does "All in All" Mean?

The phrase provides a concise summary or conclusion of a situation or series of events. It implies a comprehensive view that takes all relevant factors into account.

Let's delve into its core meanings:

  • It denotes a comprehensive or holistic viewpoint, taking into account all relevant factors.
  • It is often used as a way to sum up or conclude a discussion.
  • It conveys the sense of "in the final analysis" or "when everything is said and done."

Where Does "All in All" Come From?

The phrase "all in all" is believed to have originated from the English language itself. The earliest usage can be traced back to the 16th century in English literature. The phrase essentially means "everything being taken into account."

Historical Example

"He worketh all in all. Where we have need of a double restraint: All, that is, he worketh all powers and gifts whatsoever in whomsoever."

- Of the Redemption of Mankind Three Bookes, 1598

10 Examples of "All in All" in Sentences

Here are some examples of using the idiom in sentences:

  • All in all, spending the day surfing the net was a lot more informative than I expected.
  • All in all, I think you did a fantastic job with the project.
  • The signal was out of range most of the time, but all in all, our camping trip was a huge success.
  • He has been destined for greatness since his early days, and all in all, his journey has been nothing short of extraordinary.
  • There were a few setbacks, but all in all, it was a productive day.
  • I was glad to hear that she had recovered from her illness, and all in all, it was good news for the day.
  • There were a few minor issues, but all in all, the event was a success.
  • All in all, I can confidently say that the benefits of this plan outweigh the drawbacks.
  • He made some mistakes, but all in all, he's a good worker.
  • You've made my day with your lovely gift, and all in all, it's been a fantastic birthday.

Examples of "All in All" in Pop Culture

The phrase "all in all" frequently appears in various forms of media like literature, music, and films, often used to summarize or conclude an idea or situation.

Here are some examples:

  • "All in All: An Actor's Life On and Off the Stage" is a memoir by Stacy Keach, an American actor. The book chronicles Keach's life and career, from his early days as a child actor to his success on stage and screen.
  • "All in All: Stories and Poems" is a collection of stories and poems by Arlene Pollack, an octogenarian writer. The book is a mix of fiction and nonfiction, and it covers a wide range of topics, from the personal to the political.
  • In the 2021 movie "The Suicide Squad," Harley Quinn tells Silvio, "But all in all, I think you're more pretty like this, with all those rotten thoughts emptied from your head."

Other/Different Ways to Say "All in All"

There are several alternative expressions that convey a similar meaning to "all in all."

Some of these include:

  • In conclusion
  • In summary
  • On the whole
  • Overall
  • In the final analysis

10 Frequently Asked Questions About "All in All":

  • What does "all in all" mean?

"All in all" means considering everything, summarizing a situation or giving an overall view.

  • How can I use "all in all" in a sentence?

You can use "all in all" to sum up your thoughts or feelings about a situation. For instance, "All in all, it was a great day."

  • Where does the idiom "all in all" come from?

The phrase "all in all" is believed to have originated from the English language itself and has been used since the 16th century.

  • Can "all in all" be used to conclude a discussion?

Yes, it is often used as a conclusion or summary of a discussion.

  • Is "all in all" a formal phrase?

"All in all" is generally considered neutral and can be used in both formal and informal contexts.

  • Is the phrase applicable only to situations?

No, the phrase "all in all" can be used to sum up discussions, events, or feelings.

  • Can "all in all" be used humorously?

Yes, it can be used humorously, for example, "All in all, I'd say the dog's party was more successful than mine."

  • Can the phrase "all in all" be used in academic writing?

Yes, it can be used in academic writing to sum up or conclude an argument or discussion.

  • Can "all in all" be used to summarize a person's character?

Yes, such as in the sentence "All in all, she is a very kind and caring person."

  • Can one use the phrase in a professional context?

Yes, "all in all" can be used in a professional context to summarize a project, a meeting, or a situation.

Final Thoughts About "All in All"

The idiom "all in all" signifies a summary or an overall view of a situation or event. It symbolizes a comprehensive understanding, taking all factors into account.

Here's a quick recap:

  • It signifies a comprehensive view, considering all factors or aspects.
  • The phrase has its origins in English literature from the 16th century.
  • The phrase is applicable in a variety of situations and contexts.

Whether it's a professional summary, a personal recounting, or a literary conclusion, if it's "all in all," you know it's a succinct summary of the situation.

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