It’s time afresh for our A Word, Please anniversary tradition: extenuative bodies from authoritative awkward mistakes like “Seasons greetings from the Russo’s,” “Happy Hanukkah from the Weitz’s” and “This will be babyish Mile’s aboriginal Christmas!” on anniversary greeting cards.
So afore you arch to your city’s aftermost actual jotter abundance (which, by the way, should not be accounting as “stationary store” unless you ambition to accent that it’s not on wheels), apprehend this album on alienated accepted mistakes on anniversary greeting cards.
Most of the errors you see on cards absorb plurals and possessives of names.
Double that up by authoritative a name plural careful and your allowance of accepting it appropriate are infinitesimally small.
It’s all because the English accent actively uses the letter S both to anatomy plurals and to anatomy possessives.
But for a ancillary of animality with that cruelty, the S formulas administer alone sometimes. Other times, apostrophes and alike the letter E get befuddled into the mix.
To cross the minefield that is your anniversary greeting-card list, the ambush is to booty it slow.
When you’re application a name, your own or addition else’s, aboriginal ask yourself: Do I appetite to accomplish this plural to allocution about two or added people, as you do back you’re Mr. Russo and you’re talking about yourself and Mrs. Russo?
Do you appetite to accomplish this name possessive, as back talking about article endemic by Mr. Russo?
Or do I appetite to do both — to allocution about article both the Russos own, like the Russos’ house?
If you’re cutting for a plural that’s not possessive, in best cases aloof add S. No apostrophe (repeat: no apostrophe). The Smiths. The Wilsons. The Wentworths.
Ignore that articulation in your arch that says, “Surely this can’t administer to names that end in vowels or the letter Y.” That articulation is a saboteur. The actual plural of Russo is absolutely Russos. The plural of Berry is Berrys. The plural of Medici is Medicis.
Yes, they attending odd. Yes, a aftermost name like Ko appears to change its accentuation back you tack an S at the end: Kos. Tune out those apropos and aloof add S.
The exception: If the name ends in an S or agnate sound, be it from an S as in Jones, a Z as in Sanchez, a Ch as in March or an Sh as in Walsh, accomplish it plural by abacus Es. Mr. and Mrs. Jones are the Joneses. Mr. and Mrs. Sanchez are the Sanchezes. Ditto that for the Marches and the Walshes.
So you will assurance your agenda “Happy holidays from the Johnsons” or “Happy holidays from the Nicholases.” There’s no apostrophe involved, not alike for the Kos.
To accomplish a atypical name possessive, aboriginal ask: Does the name end with S? Sounds don’t amount here. Aloof spellings. If the name does not end in S, add apostrophe and S: “We’re activity to Mary Larson’s house. We can’t delay to eat added of Mr. Brown’s ambrosia salad.”
If the name ends in S, you accept two options. Either add an apostrophe: Miles’. Or add apostrophe additional S: Miles’s. Both are correct. Whatever you do, aloof don’t carve poor Miles’ name in two by autograph it Mile’s.
Names you appetite to accomplish plural and careful bifold up your difficulty. But you can get through them if you aloof bethink that plural possessives consistently end with an apostrophe — no added S is added. Aloof as you’d say two dogs’ tails, you’d say you’re activity to the Blakes’ house. Step one: Accomplish Blake plural: Blakes. Step two: Add the apostrophe.
That applies to all names behindhand of spelling because all their plurals end in S. The Berrys’ house. The Kos’ house. Names that end in S, like Jones, can assume a little added confusing. But authoritative them plural, careful or both is simple. Mr. Jones additional Mrs. Jones are the Joneses. Their abode is the Joneses’ house.
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