Apostrophe rules for last names

The apostrophe is used to show possessive of singular nouns and abbreviations of singular items. Here the apostrophe rules with names have been elaborately discussed.

Last names are the most common source of confusion with apostrophes. A few simple rules can help you avoid embarrassing mistakes.

The most common mistake is to put an apostrophe in a plural noun, as in “the Smith’s house.” But that’s wrong; the word Smith is always singular. If you’re talking about more than one Smith, use the term the Smiths. If you need to specify which one of many people with the last name you’re talking about, use the phrase “the family of” followed by their last name — for example: “The family of Smith is moving soon.”

What is Punctuation?

Punctuation is the art of rightly putting pauses, points and stops in writing in order to make the sense clear and comprehensible.

Use of Apostrophe (‘)

It is used to indicate that two or more persons own something jointly or two or more persons own two or more things separately.

Rules to use Apostrophe (‘) in Writing:

To form the possessive of singular nouns and abbreviations of singular items use an apostrophe plus s”

i. a girl’s hat.
ii. Joe’s car
iii. The cow’s tail
iv. NATO’s future
v. The C.O’s orders
vi. Kim’s book
vii. Fina’s school
viii. Petitioner’s party
ix. Complainant’s party
x. Court’s call

  1. To form the possessive of plural nouns not ending in s, add an apostrophe plus s:

i. men men’s activities
ii. women women’s club
iii. children children’s park
iv. Friend club Friend’s club

  1. To indicate that two or more persons own something jointly, add an apostrophe and s to the last of the nouns.

i. Joe and Kim’s shop
ii. Joe, Kim and Fina’s house.

  1. To indicate that two or more persons own two or more things separately, use the apostrophe and s with all the nouns.

i. Joe’s and Fina’s shop
ii. Kim’s, Joe’s and Fina’s shops.

  1. To form the possessive with singular compound nouns, add an apostrophe and s to the last word.

i. My sister-in-law’s career
ii. the editor-in-chief’s policy.
iii. Commander-in-chief’s orders.

  1. To form the possessive of certain indefinite pronouns, add an apostrophe and s.

i. Someone’s coat
ii. The hhopes of many
iii. the cooking of few

  1. Use the possessive case with nouns or pronouns followed by gerunds (verb + ing =noun)

i. I dislike your whistling now.
ii. The crowd’s cheering
iii. The men’s arguing
iv. Her protesting
v. Our laughing

  1. Use an apostrophe and s when necessary, in common phrase of time and measurement.

i. 7 O’ clock
ii. Five rupee’s worth
iii. Two week’s notice
iv. A day’s work
v. Our money’s worth
vi. A stone’s throw

  1. Use an apostrophe and s to form the plural of figures, letters and abbreviations.

i. Dot your I’s and cross your t’s.
ii. Your u’s, and n’s are not written properly.
iii. Two 5’s and six 8’s make fifty-eight.
iv. Many B.A’s and M.A’s are unemployed these days.

  1. Use an apostrophe to mark the omission of a letters in a contraction.

i. I have finished ….. I’ve finished
ii. He is not here ….. He isn’t here.
iii. Ths does not work…..This doesn’t work.
iv. They will not stop. ….. They won’t stop.
v. You should have writte.. you shoul’ve written
vi. I shall forgive you. …… I’ll forgive you.
vii. I cannot write it. …… I can’t write it.

  1. Use apostrophe to mark the omission of numbers in dates. For example.

1). 1971…’81
2) 1917…’188
3) 1941….’41
4) the elections of ‘88
The hurricane of ‘36

  1. The apostrophe is placed after final “s” in a word when, it is a plural noun.
    i. Girls’ school
    ii. Workers’ union
    iii. Writers’ society
    iv. Boys’ college
    v. Players’ arrival

Exercise.

Joes and Kim’s houses are side by side.
Joes’ and Kim’s’ houses are side-by-side.
She gave me a pen which is five dollars worth.
She gave me a pen which is five dollar’s worth.
Joe lives at a stones throw from here.
Joe live’s at a stones throw from here.
I ve finished my work.
I’ve finished my work.
Your ns and vs are not clearly written.
Your n’s and v’s are not clearly written.
They visited the students and schools club.
They visited the student’s and school’s club.
He could not help me.
He couldn’t help me.
One should respect ones friends.
One should respect one’s friend’s.

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