Anonymous asked in Society & CultureLanguages · 7 months ago

Why do Americans say “on accident”?

It doesn’t make any sense. It should be “by accident”. For example, I crashed the car by accident. 

18 Answers

  • ?
    Lv 5
    7 months ago

    They don't. They say "By accident".

  • Anonymous
    7 months ago

    Is it on accident or by accident? By accident and on accident are two versions of an adverb phrase that means not on purpose.

    • By accident is the standard, accepted form in print.

    • On accident might be common in spoken American English, but it isn’t an acceptable form in writing and publishing.


    Or... in my opinion... take it easy! And just say: “accidentally”.

    Anyway, you are generalizing if you say “Americans”... you should say “some Americans”. Americans are about 350 000 000.

  • 7 months ago

    Sounds like AAVE (African American Vernacular English) which is a different dialect than standard English. Honestly cultural anthropologists and linguists will tell you the whole purpose of language is to communicate clearly. If that person said that phrase and you understood what it meant, then they used the English language effectively.

  • 7 months ago

    Again, like the other posters say. I've never heard anybody say it that way. "On accident".

    You could say.

    I had an accident in my car.

    I accidently crashed the car.

    I had a car was an accident.

    Source(s): American English speaker at 68 years old.
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  • ?
    Lv 7
    7 months ago

    Where'd you get that idea?  Educated Americans know that it's "by accident."  

  • Anonymous
    7 months ago

    I am an almost 70-year-old American.

    I've never heard anyone say it in my lifetime, nor read it anywhere except in the pages of Y!A in the last year or so... 

    Who have you been listening to? 

  • 7 months ago

    Because they been through a car accident. Brain dead. 

  • 7 months ago

    I suppose it is from using "on purpose" so often why not, "on accident."

  • 7 months ago

    I think this aberration in the language occurred when American students became too ignorant to form correct, complete sentences.  Everybody gets a trophy.  Nobody fails. 

  • Ann
    Lv 6
    7 months ago

    Those I've heard say that are Black. They have a different dialect of English. 

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