Continental bar literally
The bar's owner is taking a tough stance against abuse of the English language. Twitter

A grammatically conscious New York bar says it will ban customers who incorrectly use the word "literally" in conversation.

Continental bar in Manhattan's East Village has put up a sign in its window warning patrons who drop the dreaded "L" word that they will be ushered from the premises.

The tongue-in-cheek notice says that anyone caught using the banned word will be given five minutes to finish their drink and leave.

The bar's owner, Trigger Smith, said he had grown tired of overhearing conversations peppered with "literally" and the disturbing rise of "Valley-speak".

"I had a woman from Miami the other night tell me it's happening down there," he told Grub Street. "And it's not just millennials. Now you hear newscasters using 'literally' every three minutes on the Sunday news shows.

"What's annoying is people aren't even aware they're saying it. How could you be so unaware of your words that it's coming out every couple of minutes?"

Reaction to Smith's notice has been notably mixed. Some social media users praised the bar's tough stance against grammar crimes and listed others they would like to see added to the list.

"Infectious, too. I literally find myself saying this, and always in the wrong context. It is so embarrassing", one Twitter user said.

But others said the bar owner was being just a bit too clever for his own good.

Continental, once a staple of New York's live music scene, has announced it will be shutting its doors in July.