"Regardless" is a much nicer, simpler word, irregardless of how important large words make you feel.

People using this non-word should be repeatedly poked with a big pointy stick.

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate dictionary (http://www.m-w.com/) has this to say:

"Etymology: probably blend of irrespective and regardless
"Date: circa 1912
"Irregardless originated in dialectal American speech in the early 20th century. Its fairly widespread use in speech called it to the attention of usage commentators as early as 1927.

"The most frequently repeated remark about it is that "there is no such word." There is such a word, however. It is still used primarily in speech, although it can be found from time to time in edited prose. Its reputation has not risen over the years, and it is still a long way from general acceptance. Use regardless instead."

Sorry for the cut-and-paste there, but I think M-W has hit the nail right on the head. I'm tired of hearing people say that "irregardless" is not a word. Irregardless is a word. It is non-standard, and not a particularly good word, and should not be used, especially since there are better alternatives (ie "regardless"). Besides, you might get poked with a big pointy stick -- repeatedly.

However, and this bears repeating: Irregardless is a word.

Search irregardless on dictionary.com for why the word is not exactly non-standard as well.

Irregardless is officially not a word, by the decision of many individuals and organizations who make it their point to tell people what is and is not a word.

Despite the fact the word in question is not a word and does not exist, the definition of the nonword "irregardless" is "in spite of everything; without regard to drawbacks" according to scholars in Princeton University which does exist. The word irrespective is a word which does exist, and according to Princeton, it means exactly the same thing. However, "irrespective" just doesn't have the right ring to it. I feel like a punk kid trying to sound intelligent when I use words like that. Although "irregardless" sounds stupid to a scholar, it sounds much more intelligent to a punk kid, and since I'm little more than a very old punk kid, I use nonwords like "irregardless" and pretend to sound kewl when I really sound like a nitwit.

"Ain't" ain't a word, either. Just in case you're keeping score.

This most excellent elucidation of the disposition of this word appears in The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Third Edition. This blurb manages to avoid the nasty dilemma "Is it a word?" as JerboaKolinowski pointed out: "mistakenly believe to be correct ... in formal style" is both accurate and philosophically sound.

The label Non-Standard does only approximate justice to the status of irregardless. More precisely, it is a form that many people mistakenly believe to be a correct usage in formal style but that in fact has no legitimate antecedents in either standard or nonstandard varieties. (The word was likely coined from a blend of irrespective and regardless.) Perhaps this is why critics have sometimes insisted that there is “no such word” as irregardless, a charge they would not think of leveling at a bona fide nonstandard word such as ain't, which has an ancient genealogy.

This word is also a good example of why one cannot always trust on-line information sources: WordNet defines irregardless without so much as a word indicating the scorn one might incur should one use it in educated circles. (Enough people have messaged me their hate for WordNet, by the way. I'm sure there is somewhere more constuctive than my inbox to express that opinion.)

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