Old skool apostrophe

by Rabhen

I went to school in the 60's and we were taught the apostrophe for possession comes after the s. Janes' book is there. Jane's running would represent the missing letter. So, has this changed? I have noticed none of the writing aps I use automatically accept Janes', they reject it as misspelled. It is highlighted red here as I type, indicating a misspelling. Is this new? Am I so old I remember wrong? What's the deal?

Comments for Old skool apostrophe

Click here to add your own comments

Mar 17, 2021
Apostrophe for possession
by: Audrey Owen

I was in school in the 60s as well. You may have been taught in a different school system from the one I learned and continue to work in.

In most cases, the possessive is formed by apostrophe s ('s). Examples would be Jane's book, the mother's voice, and the school's curriculum.

The apostrophe follows the s when the noun ends in plural s.
Examples would be the girls' mothers, the students' desks, and the dogs' leashes.

Different style guides have different rules for writing possessives for words that form a new syllable when possessive and forming possessives with words ending in an unpronounced s.

Since this is something that confuses you, I suggest you choose a style guide and follow its rules. If you find yourself needing to follow a different style guide to be accepted by a particular publication, you will understand that there are legitimate differences in the real world.

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Pesky Writing Problems.

Enjoy this page? Please pay it forward. Here's how...

Would you prefer to share this page with others by linking to it?

  1. Click on the HTML link code below.
  2. Copy and paste it, adding a note of your own, into your blog, a Web page, forums, a blog comment, your Facebook account, or anywhere that someone would find this page valuable.

This is Jack Popjes and one of his published books. He and I worked on multiple projects. He's  met many goals.

Meet your writing goals in 2023.

Click to start NOW

Free Newsletter

Sign up below for

Editor's Notes 

Inspiration and Writing Tips 

and receive tips 
to maximize 
your use of MS Word.

Click for more information 
and archived copies...

Or sign up using the form below 
to start your subscription right away.

Enter Your E-mail Address
Enter Your First Name (optional)

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Editor's Notes.