in all likelihood or in all likelihoods

danielxu85

Senior Member
Mandarin Chinese
I know that "likelihood" means "probability". Correct me if I am wrong. I think you could say "in all probabilities" and "in all probability", so it should be the same case with "likelihood". However, I googled and found too few results of "in all likelihoods". Is it ok to say "in all likelihoods", instead of "in all likelihood"?
 
  • maxiogee

    Banned
    English
    I have never heard "in all likelihoods" it is always spoken of here in Ireland, at least, as singular - "XYZ might happen, but in all likelihood it won't." Nor do I recall hearing "in all probabilities".
     

    Roddyboy55

    Senior Member
    England, English UK
    No, there is no plural of "all likelihood".

    There could be and there probably should be - but there isn't.

    It is probably the nature of the comment itself, the actual wording "in ALL likelihood", "ALL" is very comprehensive in scope and allows for no extra options or additions.
    So just as you cannot really have universes and infinities, you cannot have ALL likelihoods, it is possible that you have some (various) likelihoods.
    I think the combination of ALL and the plural is probably the real problem, particularly as the phrase is normally used as one.

    best wishes
    Rod
     

    danielxu85

    Senior Member
    Mandarin Chinese
    Thanks, Maxiogee and Rod! Could you say "in all probability" or "in all probabilities"? Maxiogee said she never heard of "in all probabilities", so I am not sure about these two phrases.
     

    hly2004

    Banned
    chinese
    "in all likeliboods"=almost certainly
    The "all" used in "it all likelihoods" is similiar with that used in "I've all time in the world for", or "I'm all ears" or "by all means", although I'm not sure.
     

    Roddyboy55

    Senior Member
    England, English UK
    I think we have the same problem again, the term "all probabilities" already indicates an infinite, and we don't need a plural of the infinite.

    The concepts of ears and means are divisible, and although time is infinite it is still divisible into days and weeks etc.

    Phrases like the "best of times" refer to specific periods of time and not to the infinitity of time.


    good luck
    Rod
     

    hly2004

    Banned
    chinese
    Here's another thought:

    Could "probability" be measured by a percentage point?
    If so, then "in all probability/likelihood" means "100%", am I correct:)
     

    danielxu85

    Senior Member
    Mandarin Chinese
    Excuse me for asking so many questions. Could you say "in all possibilities" or " in all possibility"? I checked google and found the former far outnumbered the latter.
     

    maxiogee

    Banned
    English
    Thanks, Maxiogee and Rod! Could you say "in all probability" or "in all probabilities"? Maxiogee said she never heard of "in all probabilities", so I am not sure about these two phrases.

    Ahem, maxiogee is a 'he'. :)
    I would stick to the singular for both of them in all likelihood and in all probability.
     
    Top