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After a name ending in s, you may add just an apostrophe or an apostrophe and another s to form the possessive. For example, most people pronounced the possessive of Dickens and Ares without an extra s sound. Susan's and Steve's bags are black. For plural possessives of such names, always insert the apostrophe after the final s. Names ending is s, such as Charles and Dickens, present a conundrum to writers. For names ending in s, form the possessive either by simply adding an apostrophe (Lucas’ letters) or by adding an apostrophe as well as ( Extra: When to use as well as ) another s (Silas’s phone). Common nouns ending in an s, z or x sound should generally take an apostrophe and an s when indicating possession. The Chicago Manual of Style once recommended a single apostrophe to form the possessive of Biblical or classical names: Moses’ tent Achilles’ helmet Jesus’ name. Is It OK to End a Sentence with a Preposition? Family names are pluralized to refer to more than one person. I was utterly convinced that anytime a word ends in “s”, the possessive should have an apostrophe, sans the extra “-s”. Find out more about apostrophes here. Either style is fine, as long as you stay consistent.
Form the possessive of a name ending in “s” by adding an apostrophe and another “s” or by simply adding an apostrophe. Style manuals differ in their recommendations. All rights reserved. When it comes to forming the possessive of a proper name that ends in s, guides disagree. Some writers and editors won’t add the extra s; others will. Classical or religious names: add ' (only the apostrophe) Jesus’ disciples carried out the teachings of Jesus. It’s hard to know for sure what to do in situations like these. These nouns might end in one of those letters, or they might also end in se, ze, ce or xe. Above all, stay consistent! When it comes to forming the possessive of a proper name that ends in s, guides disagree. Using apostrophes with possessive nouns gets a little more confusing when the noun ends in a sibilant (an s, z or x sound). When it comes to possessives, last names are, again, like other nouns. Infinitives vs. Gerunds: When to Use Which, 29 Companies That Hire Freelance Editors and Proofreaders, Major Style Manuals for Editors and Writers, How to form the possessive of a name ending in, Possessives of names of countries and other places. The questions on the use of the apostrophe to form the possessive keep coming.
To form the plural, add an s or es (e.g., the Smiths, the Dalys, the Patels, the Dickenses, the Joneses, the Harrises). Never add an additional s to form the possessive of a place name that is plural, regardless of which style guide you follow. To refer to an entire family, you need a plural. Most names: add 's (apostrophe S) They had a really good time at James’s barbecue last Friday. 5.
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