May 30, 2005 4 Comments
From The Facebook:
How many lines of code does it take to figure out if a last name ends with an ‘S’? And how many more to toggle between ’s and s’?
If a name already ends with an s, the extra s is sometimes dropped: Jesus’ parables. This is more common in U.S. usage and with classical names (Eros’ statue, Herodotus’ book). Additionally, many contemporary names that end with -es (a -z sound) will see the extra s dropped by some writers: Charles’ car, though most style guides advocate Charles’s car.
Update: I was completely wrong citing the example at the bottom. I’m keeping it around for no real reason. Thanks [Drew].
When the noun is plural and already ends in s, no extra s is added in the possessive, so pens’ lids (where there is more than one pen) rather than pens’s lids. If the plural noun doesn’t end in s, then add s as usual: children’s hats.
It’s simple grammar. Oh well.