1. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    Names that end with an S.

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by guamyankee, Feb 24, 2011.

    What's the correct way to write this:

    1. Amos’ face was covered in blood.

    2. Amos’s face was covered in blood.

    I'm not so crazy about either one. I've only shown the relevant part of the sentence though, not the whole thing.

    ***Oops, I should have posted this in spelling, punctuation, and grammar.
     
  2. Paris_Love
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    Paris_Love Member

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    The first one is correct.
     
  3. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    Amos and I both thank you.
     
  4. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    Avoid, avoid, avoid giving any of your characters a name ending in 's'. It will drive you and the reader crazy after a while.
    The more common punctuation is becoming Amos's in American English, I've noticed (yum! a real plethora of 's's if you use a surname like 'Stephens'), but in British English (at the moment) Amos' is used more frequently.
    Just keep away from the problem and make your life easier. If it's unavoidable, be consistent.
     
  5. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    Very good point. I will consider changing the name, or maybe changing the sentence around. The character only makes a couple of appearances.
     
  6. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    The second seems much better to me.
     
  7. Eunoia
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    Eunoia Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think they're both correct, but I would have to go with the first personally.
     
  8. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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  9. Leonardo Pisano
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    Leonardo Pisano Active Member

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    AFAIK, Amos's is correct, how unnatural it may seem. I believe the plural possessive ending on an "s" goes with the comma, such as in: the houses' chimneys or the ships' anchors
     
  10. KillianRussell
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    KillianRussell Contributing Member

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    Elvis' gay lover, not elvis's boy toy
     
  11. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Yep.

    Thomas' lover, not Thomas's lover.
     
  12. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well, been thinking a bit more, and found this very name in my notes:

    'I liked the Elvis' costumes' -- I am admiring the costumes of a group of Elvis lookalikes,
    and
    'I liked Elvis's costume' -- I liked the costume worn by Elvis.

    Elvis' = plural noun (I suppose you could also have 'Elvises', but word seems to morph out of recognition)
    Elvis's = singular noun

    *phew* I knew this issue had caused problems in the past.

    I'd still go with the s' and not s's every time, even for singular nouns. I guess it's partly a matter of style?
     
  13. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    what's wrong with just 'his'?... or 'the man's/boy's/whatever's?

    any alternative would be better, imo...
     

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