Questions about the possessive, one of several constructions that describe ownership or association between two objects.

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2answers
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Possessives of a title in italics

If one writes a word in italics, say the name of a movie, and wants to put apostrophe s at the end to form the possessive, is the apostrophe s italicised with the title? Chinatown's or Chinatown's?
-1
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1answer
6k views

Apostrophes and s's [duplicate]

I always forget the rule about if something is possessive put 's at the end, for example "the sailor's hat". I know some people say to remember because it has a different meaning if it's plural (e.g. ...
0
votes
1answer
72 views

Using possessive when talking about two [duplicate]

What's the correct form of writing this possessive sentence: Helena and my birthdays are coming. Helena's and my birthdays are coming. My and Helena's birthdays are coming. Any links about the ...
1
vote
1answer
404 views

Is it correct to say “a friend of X and mine” if both X and I know each other and the friend?

As I understand it, if X and Y independently have the same friend Z, we should write Z is a friend of X's and Y's but if X and Y collectively have Z as a friend (e.g., X and Y are a couple), ...
8
votes
3answers
293 views

“A similar hat to Jane” vs “A hat similar to Jane’s”

Of late I have noticed British people using the following sort of construct: John and Jane make such a cute couple because John always wears a similar hat to Jane. To my ear, that is ...
3
votes
1answer
131 views

How to use possessives apostrophes when the word ends with a symbol?

For example, if I want to say an account of Google+, is it the same as say a Google+'s account? In other words, are possessives formed in the same way as always, no matter whether the word ends in ...
2
votes
1answer
388 views

Possession in Compound Nouns [duplicate]

In a compound noun with a postpositive adjective, such as "Director-General" or "Court Martial," the noun is pluralized by using the plural form of the first word (i.e. "Directors-General" or "Courts ...
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votes
1answer
202 views

“during one of my girlfriend's games”

I was trying to say "During one of my girlfriend's soccer games..." The problem is when I spoke it, it could be interpreted as "Out of all of my girlfriends... during one of their games this ...
5
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1answer
209 views

Appositives with possessiveness?

I would like to say something like The boy, Adam's, favorite toy was a bike. What is the proper way to say this?
8
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6answers
3k views

Difference in pronunciation between “your” and “you're”?

I'm a native English speaker (Texas counts, I suppose), and I pronounce "your" to rhyme with "core", and "you're" to rhyme with "cure". Is it just me or did I pick this up somewhere?
5
votes
3answers
5k views

Does a person have two “masters’ degrees” or two “master’s degrees”? [duplicate]

When someone has more than one master’s degree, should these be described as have several masters’ degrees or several master’s degrees? In other words, which of these two applies: (singular) a ...
3
votes
3answers
392 views

Can “whose” refer to a first-person subject in the third person?

This question came from a friend. It is from a college entrance exam for non-native English speakers. Link the following sentences with "whose": I was a small kid. My classmates laughed at ...
46
votes
2answers
14k views

What is the correct possessive for nouns ending in “‑s”?

What is the possessive of a noun ending in ‑s? Are these both right, or is the second one wrong? the boys' books the boss' car
40
votes
6answers
4k views

When did it become correct to add an “s” to a singular possessive already ending in “‑s”?

According to my grammar book, but at variance to the answer to this question, the correct singular possessive if a word ends in ‑s is: James’s car The grammar book allows exceptions for ...
8
votes
1answer
788 views

What is the possessive form of “y'all”?

I generally hear y'alls's used as the possessive form, but I have also heard yourn. Since y'all is a colloquial pronoun, its possessive form is basically liberated from prescriptive linguistics which ...
4
votes
3answers
5k views

Should “two weeks vacation” be “two weeks' vacation” (possessive)?

I've always understood that the phrase "two weeks" usually turns to "two weeks'" when used as a modifier -- as in "I'm giving my two weeks' notice" or "I get two weeks' vacation" ("two weeks' holiday" ...
0
votes
1answer
138 views

cat eye vs. cat's eye

I was reading another thread here and came across a technical term rheum that I didn't know. I went to wikipedia for more information and saw a picture there where the caption says Rheum in cat ...
13
votes
5answers
1k views

Is using the possessive 's correct in “the car's antenna”?

I know that to mark possession of an item you can use 's like in the following example: The user's password shall not be blank. However, is it correct to use the following: The car's antenna ...
6
votes
3answers
4k views

Do things use apostrophe for indicating possessive? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is using the possessive 's correct in “the car's antenna”? If someone owns something I would say: Mom's car. But if the owner is not a person, does ...
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votes
1answer
317 views

Analysis's output vs output of the analysis [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Apostrophe “s” vs “Of” possessive connecting word for inanimate object Once again I'm not sure if I should use possessive or atributive or ...
0
votes
2answers
116 views

Which phrase is more natural to a native speaker? [closed]

"The underlying notions of the problem" or "The problem underlying notions"? Please consider the brevity principle too.
4
votes
4answers
9k views

'Which', 'whose' or something else?

I would appreciate your help phrasing the following: I am looking for elements which/whose/... size/sizes is/are relatively large.
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1answer
1k views

Using “who” for things (nonliving beings)

On an online typing tutor site I came across the following phrase: We're now going to move on to words who's first letter originates on the top row. Can "who" normally be used in this way (to ...
3
votes
0answers
290 views

possessive connecting word for inanimate object [duplicate]

Duplicate of: Is the word 'whose' referring to an inanimate object correct in this sentence? Usage of “whose” not referring to a person. Referring to some attribute of an inanimate ...
2
votes
1answer
826 views

Usage of “whose” not referring to a person [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Referring to some attribute of an inanimate object — use “who's”? I noticed the use of "whose" in the following sentence I wrote does not refer to a ...
4
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0answers
393 views

What is the possessive form of “what”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: 'Which', 'whose' or something else? First of all, I'm not a native speaker so I can't rely on my intuition in this specific case. For a very long time I ...
1
vote
0answers
564 views

Other ways of saying whichs [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: 'Which', 'whose' or something else? Of course there isn't a word whichs (as far as I know), but I am talking about the possessive form of which. ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

Can 'whose' be used for objects? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is the word 'whose' referring to an inanimate object correct in this sentence? Is there a more appropriate word? Basically I'm wondering if a sentence like this ...
0
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3answers
106 views

Can we say “the problem's”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is using the possessive 's correct in “the car’s antenna”? Can we add apostrophe S, 's, to a word for an inanimate object as in the phrase the problem's ...
13
votes
5answers
7k views

Apostrophe-“s” vs “of ”

I gave a quick answer to part of this question which had not been covered by previous answers, trying to clarify the reason you would say time of decoding but not decoding’s time. I said it was ’s ...
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vote
3answers
369 views

What is the correct possessive genitive for “media”?

I hope I've used the right terms in the title; I'm not a native speaker. The singular of media is of course medium. So when talking about one medium's content, the genitive s and apostrophe are easy ...
3
votes
2answers
526 views

Plurals and possessives of quoted words [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Marking plural of code words Pluralizing Keywords in Programming Languages After asking a number of questions on StackOverflow, I keep running into some of the same ...
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2answers
426 views

About adjective possessive pronouns [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is there a correct gender-neutral, singular pronoun (“his” versus “her” versus “their”)? In the sentence ‘Everyone should make everyone’s part’, what adjective ...
14
votes
4answers
14k views

“Its” as a Possessive Pronoun

Since its can be both determiner possessive pronoun and nominal possessive pronoun, an example of its as determiner possessive pronoun would be: We saved this question for last because of its ...
0
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1answer
94 views

What's the difference between “a picture of the king” and “a picture of the king's”? [closed]

A picture of the king. A picture of the king's. What exactly is the difference between the two?
6
votes
1answer
941 views

Why do we say “of mine/of his” instead of “of me/of him”?

He's a friend of mine. That's a car of his. Why do we use the possessive when the meaning would be the same while not using it (e.g. a friend of me and a car of him)? I thought maybe it is ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Why use apostrophe-s to denote possession when using 'of'

Think of the simple phrase "Bill's friend". If you were going to turn this around using the preposition 'of' would you say: A friend of Bill's or A friend of Bill It appears to me that, in the US ...
24
votes
9answers
3k views

Why is it usually “friend of his”, but no possessive apostrophe with “friend of Peter”?

As this NGram shows, we nearly always use the possessive form of personal pronouns for friend of mine/his/ours/etc. But when it comes to actual names, we prefer friend of Peter without the possessive ...
0
votes
1answer
395 views

What’s the pronunciation of “ s’ ”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What is the pronunciation of the possessive words that already end in s? “The Weasley twins’ friend, Lee Jordan, was doing the commentary for the match.” Do ...
2
votes
2answers
260 views

Why is an apostrophe used in the genitive “-’s”?

The English possessive isn’t a contraction, but rather a relic of the grammatical case system, so why is an apostrophe used in (most) forms of the possessive?
8
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1answer
1k views

How did an apostrophe plus the letter “s” come to indicate possession? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Origins of possessive pronouns How did English come to use "apostrophe s" to indicate possession, when it seems to me that few (if any!) other languages do (or do ...
0
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4answers
8k views

“my”, “of me”, “of mine” - when to use these possessive constructions

I have been encountering possessive constructions with the preposition "of" and a possessive form of pronoun frequently, but I do not fully understand what it means and when to use it. In particular, ...
6
votes
1answer
17k views

What is the proper plural of “a series”? [closed]

In math, we use the term series a lot, and there are many types of series. How should I craft my sentence when I have three different ones in mind to talk about? Should I settle down for a less ...
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votes
3answers
1k views

Possessive of a word that is already possessive

If the cricket ground Lord's is a possessive, what if you want to describe something belonging to Lord's? Would you say "I was very impressed by Lord's's customer services"? It doesn't look right, ...
0
votes
1answer
121 views

Chained possessive words [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “My wife and I’s seafood collaboration dinner” I’m sure there are better ways to write the following sentence, but I was curious to know if this sentence is ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

What is the possessive form of a singular noun ending with a plural s?

I would tend to treat a company name as singular and would therefore write the possessive form with 's. Now, my company refers to its international operations by placing the country name behind the ...
2
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1answer
251 views

What is the correct usage for I'm a girl in my early twenties?

Which is grammatically correct? I am a girl in my early twenties. or I am a girl in her early twenties.
2
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1answer
303 views

“List of tasks” or “tasks' list”

Which of these forms is better: list of tasks or tasks' list? Another question is whether I should use an apostrophe or not (tasks's list vs tasks list). Other phrases which are similar to this, but ...
2
votes
1answer
102 views

In “an idea of Hölderlin’s”, is “of” a partitive or a genitive?

We often use these constructions. A friend of mine is probably the most common. I have often wondered, being an English teacher, whether the function of the preposition of in such contexts is that of ...
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2answers
292 views

“The dog's tail” vs. “the tail of the dog” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is using the possessive 's correct in “the car’s antenna”? When talking about animal body parts, which of the following is the right one (or could both be possible ...