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Recently, I was auto-corrected by a word processor when I typed in "now days" to "nowadays." Why did it do this to me? "Nowadays" looks and sounds silly, incorrect, and made-up to me.

Which version is appropriate? Which is most appropriate? Where did the word "nowadays" even come from?

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You can look it up. As for why word processors do what they do: they're cursed. Don't use them. End of the world predicted: film at eleven. –  MετάEd Dec 21 '12 at 16:25
What does now days mean? Nowadays‌​. –  Matt Эллен Dec 21 '12 at 16:25
I suppose someone did make this up... sometime in the 14th century. –  J.R. Dec 21 '12 at 16:34
@MετάEd: didn't you hear? Film cancelled, due to unforeseen apocalypse. –  TimLymington Dec 21 '12 at 17:47
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closed as general reference by MετάEd, Matt Эллен, Robusto, StoneyB, Hellion Dec 21 '12 at 19:11

This question is too basic; it can be definitively and permanently answered by a single link to a standard internet reference source designed specifically to find that type of information.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

1 Answer

Nowadays, the word is nowadays. You can find it in any dictionary (unlike now days). The better ones will also have the etymology:

late 14c., contracted from Middle English nou adayes (mid-14c.), from now + adayes "during the day," with adverbial genitive (see day).

As you can see, it used to be two words — seven centuries ago.

The Corpus of Contemporary American English does have a few cites for now days, but frankly, just look at the figures yourself:

 nowadays    3167
 now days       7

And here are the figures from the British National Corpus:

 nowadays    1556
 now days       0

That's how tiny a minority you're in. For once, the spellchecker is actually right.

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This is a good analysis. It looks like hardly anyone uses two words now days. –  J.R. Dec 21 '12 at 16:39
excellent! with analysis included +1 –  lontivero Dec 21 '12 at 17:11
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