Usage and Grammar

Q. Which is CMOS’s position on the use of the word irregardless? Wikipedia states, “The term ‘irregardless’ has begun to move towards acceptance because incorrect words or grammatical conventions are absorbed by the English language based on common usage.” This logic bothers me.

A. When a word’s usage becomes uncontroversial or is recognized as standard by dictionaries, Chicago editors come around to accepting it. For instance, many of us have stopped slashing through the disjunctive adverbs “more importantly” and “hopefully.” At the moment, however, there’s no reason to change a perfectly good word like “regardless” to one that is bound to raise the hackles of many readers.