There are grammar debates that never die; and the ones highlighted in the questions in this quiz are sure to rile everyone up once again. Do you know how to answer the questions that cause some of the greatest grammar debates?
Question 1 of 7
Which sentence is correct?

Origin of total

First recorded in 1350鈥1400; Middle English (adjective), from Medieval Latin t艒t膩lis, equivalent to Latin t艒t(us) 鈥渆ntire鈥 + -膩lis-al1

synonym study for total

6. See whole.


Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 漏 Random House, Inc. 2023


What does total mean?

Total describes the wholeness or entirety of something, like the total amount of cake you ate last night. If you ate the total cake, you ate the entire cake (and might have felt sick afterward!).

Total describes the breadth of something either physically or conceptually. For example, your total order describes all the items in your purchase. While if you鈥檙e a total success, you are completely successful.

A total is the complete amount or sum. The total on your restaurant bill is the entire amount of money you owe for your meal.

A total can also be the entirety of something. The total of your book collection would be all the books you own, and the total of your sports equipment is all the equipment you own.

Finally, to total is to add up (to total your bill) or to reach an amount, as in The bill totalled up to $56.75.

Example: The total on the bill is higher than I expected because I forgot about sales tax.

Where does total come from?

The first records of the term total come from the 1300s. It comes from the Medieval Latin t艒t膩lis.

Total also has a slang sense, meaning to completely destroy, as in I totaled my car or The building was totaled. When something is totaled, it is completely destroyed or broken down beyond usability. For a total understanding of total, read on!

Did you know 鈥 ?

What are some other forms related to total?

  • quasi-total (adjective)
  • retotal (verb)
  • totally (adverb)
  • untotalled (adjective)

What are some synonyms for total?

What are some words that share a root or word element with total?

What are some words that often get used in discussing total?

How is total used in real life?

Total is used in a wide variety of contexts, including as an adjective when discussing the scope of something, a noun when discussing a dollar amount, and a verb when discussing the destruction of something.

Try using total!

Which of the following is NOT a synonym for total?

A. all
B. whole
C. part
D. complete

How to use total in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for total

/ (藞t蓹蕣tl) /

the whole, esp regarded as the complete sum of a number of parts
complete; absolutethe evening was a total failure; a total eclipse
(prenominal) being or related to a totalthe total number of passengers
verb -tals, -talling or -talled or US -tals, -taling or -taled

Derived forms of total

totally, adverb

Word Origin for total

C14: from Old French, from Medieval Latin t艒t膩lis, from Latin t艒tus all
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition 漏 William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 漏 HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012