Apostrophes to Show Possession
Use an apostrophe to indicate that a noun is possessive.
possessive nouns indicate ownership.
The dog belongs to Bob. This is Bob's dog.
however, "ownership" is only loosely implied:
was fired after the long day's work.
Spanish is Rick's native language.
The tree's roots are making the sidewalk
whether a noun is possessive, try putting it
into an of phrase (it might not sound great,
but it should make sense).
the dog of Bob; the work of a long day; the native language of Rick; the
roots of the tree.
'S, s', s's? which one should I use? How can I know?
noun does not end in -s, add -'s. (This
applies to both singular and plural nouns.)
Roy climbed out on the driver's side.
Thank you for refunding the children’s money.
noun is singular and ends in -s, add -'s.
Louis’s sister spent last year in India.
The grass's healthy green color is fading
because of the draught.
if pronunciation becomes awkward because of the added -'s, you can use just
the apostrophe. Either use is acceptable.
Moses' experiences are recounted in the Old
The Beatles' last live performance occurred
on the roof of this building.
noun is plural and ends in -s, add only an
The cats’ food dishes are missing.
The books’ covers are missing.