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Can someone help me to clarify this. Is the word Jesus' feet pronounced as "Jesuses feet" or simply "Jesus feet"? I read up some articles and most of them said both versions are correct. However, when I was in London recently, I heard St. James' Park pronounced as "St. Jameses Park." I am not sure whether it was spelt as St. James' Park or St. James's Park. Should it then be Jesus's feet? Much appreciated!

Petra

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marked as duplicate by Edwin Ashworth, FumbleFingers, aedia λ, RegDwigнt May 30 at 18:35

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Good frend for Jesus sake forebeare . . . (opening of Shakespeare’s epitaph).

Strunk &/or White (flame away, do!) make(s) explicit exception for the name Jesus, endorsing the possessive form “ Jesus’ ” even while advocating for “ s’s ” (/zεz/ or /zəz/) for possessives of such names as Charles & James. W. S. Gilbert in Iolanthe uses “ s’s ” for the Mayfair park you mention, and the poetic meter and Arthur Sullivan’s score both confirm that it is syllabic.

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Where do S&W talk about how to pronounce the word? –  Jon Hanna May 30 at 18:17
    
@JonHanna : S&W do not, but OP is concerned with oral as well as written forms here. –  Brian Donovan May 30 at 18:19
1  
Making S&W not very relevant. Likewise G&S at best suggest a particular pronunciation is an accepted form, not necessarily the only one. I'm not sure I'd even accept them of prove of that, since they would be the sort to change a pronunciation as comic word-play if it suited them. –  Jon Hanna May 30 at 18:22

Is the word Jesus' feet pronounced as "Jesuses feet" or simply "Jesus feet"?

Yes, it's pronounced as "Jesuses feet" or simply "Jesus feet"?

I read up some articles and most of them said both versions are correct.

There are many incorrect articles around, but did you have a reason to doubt these particular articles?

However, when I was in London recently, I heard St. James' Park pronounced as "St. Jameses Park."

That doesn't preclude other people pronouncing it the other way. IME though, Londoners do seem to tend toward that pronunciation. Such differences tend to vary according to place and peer-group, because people tend to do what people around them do.

I am not sure whether it was spelt as St. James' Park or St. James's Park.

Nor is anyone else!

Since these things change over time, you'll find that the form James' was once most common, then James's became more popular and now just James (dropping the possessive out of the placename entirely) is on the rise. (This last only as it applies to place-names, company names, etc. The apostrophe remains in use in the possessive generally).

Sometimes you'll even see more than one form on actual place signs within meters of each other.

Should it then be Jesus's feet? Much appreciated!

Whichever you want.

The same goes for spelling, with both Jesus' and Jesus's being accepted forms. In cases of actual genitive (as opposed to place names, where what is originally possessive may change to no longer be so) there are in fact three styles in use:

  1. Extra s: Angus's, Jesus's
  2. No extra s: Angus', Jesus'
  3. Extra s, unless it's a name from the Bible, especially Jesus and perhaps other names from classical history: Angus's, Jesus'.

The last may seem rather bizarre and inconsistent, but stems from the Angus' form being older and the Angus's form more recent; some people who preferred the Angus's form as more logically consistent with the rest of the language liked to keep their spellings in line with their Bible, and so continued to use Jesus' just as their family KJV does.

Pretty much everyone who spells it s's pronounces it /sɪs/ (extra syllable) and pretty much everyone who pronounces it /s/ (no extra syllable) spells it s', but you'll find some exceptions, along with a great many who spell it s' and pronounce it /sɪs/

(Incidentally, I would write Angus' myself, and pronounce it /ˈæŋɡəsɪs/ as in "anguses", but I know this is not the only style of writing or form of pronunciation one will find and don't claim mine as the only reasonable way).

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