Annoying Bad Grammar You Might Be Using

Are you ever confused by “in person” or “in-person”?

Many of us become confused, but these rules can help you decide.

Alive and in person, personally, and in a personal appearance.

When using the English language, do you ever have problems deciding whether in person or in-person is correct? Many of us do so, but these rules can help you decide.

“In person” and “in-person” are both correct, as long as the the first phrase is used as an adverb and the second phrase is used as an adjective.

  • Remember that an adverb modifies a verb, adding enhancing information such as howor when.
  • Remember that an adjective modifies a noun or pronoun by modifying it with information that tells what kind of.

Continue to read below for definitions and examples for the use of the adverb in person and the adjective in-person.

In Person (as an Adverb)

This phrase is an adverb, because it tells how something was done, is being done, or will be done. For example:

I do not trust the market’s delivery system, so I am going to the store in person.

(How will I go? I will go in person.)

If you say you’ll go “in person” you mean you’ll go personally rather than sending somebody or something else to represent you.

Synonyms For “In Person”

Synonyms for “in person” are personally, myself, and in the flesh, as in:

  • He applied for the job in person, or
  • I couldn’t believe it, but there she was, in the flesh.
  • Oh my goodness, he was right there before my eyes!

In-Person (as an Adjective)

In-person: this hyphenated word is an adjective, a word that tells us “what kind of.”

Many adjectives are hyphenated words, but writing guides caution us from using too many hyphenated words as adjectives, and against stringing many words together as a single hyphenated-word adjective.

For example, a “thicker-than-thread-but-thinner-than-rope” cord. Usually, we have an English word that means the same things as the string of words connected with hyphens, although not always, and the long string still can be used for comic effect, as needed.

In-person: (adjective): an appearance carried out personally in someone else’s physical presence; “we’ll have in-person negotiations” or “I’d love an in-person consultation.”

Synonyms For “In-Person”

Synonyms for “in-person” are personal, private, or face-to-face.