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Discussion in 'Personal' started by jubilee, Oct 16, 2019.
@nomad I actually found your explanation very informative. Ignore the naysayers.
Basically, in Middle English the possessive would be (for example) "Nomades post".
Remove the 'e', replace with an apostrophe, and you get "Nomad's post".
So the possessive form is actually the omission of a letter.
In a pub quiz, perhaps.
Now why didn't you just say that! I actually understand it now!
What annoys me is when I spell the word correctly but get a red line under it because apparently I should be using American. Where will it end? Will I have to write aloominum instead of aluminium?
I hate it when people do such thing's.
In addition, in the early modern era possession was often written as ‘person - his - object’, for example Robert his book. This was then shortened to Robert’s book through the omission of letters and the introduction of an apostrophe. Women at the time, of course, took the lead from men.
You said that the only real use for apostrophes was to indicate a missing letter and then didn't apply that usage.
No. Its colour is blue, not it's colour is blue and certainly not it's' colour is blue!
It's also = it has
Whilst I can see the logic in this (I have > I’ve, we have > we’ve, etc) it just doesn’t seem to work with “it has”.
The dog has a bone.
It has a bone.
It’s a bone.
That just doesn’t work.
It’s been - it has been.
It's a bone - doesn't work.
It's a nice day. That is correct. So does 'The Government has lost its way'.
I can't think of any other examples of it's and its to worry about.
Basically it seems to work when the verb “to have” is used as an auxiliary verb but not when it’s the active stand-alone verb in the sentence.
Not even needed every time.
I was thinking more of the likes of don't / dont and can't / cant where the apostrophe changes the sound of the word.
They're / their / there and you're / your, would take some getting used to but it would have virtually no impact to remove them there as well.
I think the reality is that apostrophes of possession are on their way out and some omission ones aren't far behind.
It seems to work easily in the passive voice, on reflection.
It's been a long time.
It's broken every speed record.
I invested far too many hours of primary school education, sitting in a stuffy Victorian classroom with the sun shining brightly outside the grimy fly-blown windows, learning the minutae of English grammar and punctuation to give it all up now!