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Thread: "peoples"

  1. #1
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    Default "peoples"

    Hi,

    When reading a text called "Drivers who are worlds apart" I ran into the following sentence; ... and they are the least safety conscious of peoples, professing a very low opinion of seat belts.
    I know what it means, I understand the sentence but the problem is that I would say it in different way.
    Is this a possessive form ?
    And if it is possessive here doesn't have to be there a abbriviation mark
    -> ' <- ?
    Thanks in advance !
    Johan

  2. #2
    SweetMommaSue's Avatar
    SweetMommaSue is offline Junior Member
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    Smile Re: "peoples"

    Quote Originally Posted by Johan[@CLT]
    Hi,

    When reading a text called "Drivers who are worlds apart" I ran into the following sentence: ". . . and they are the least safety conscious of peoples, professing a very low opinion of seat belts."
    I know what it means, I understand the sentence but the problem is that I would say it in different way.
    Is this a possessive form ? No, it is not.
    And if it is possessive here doesn't there have to be an [s]abbriviation mark[/s] apostrophe?
    -> ' <- ? Yes, apostrophes usually indicate the possessive form of English nouns.
    Thanks in advance ! No problem.
    Johan
    Hello Johan! Welcome to the forums!

    From that brief sentence, I would say that it is merely a plural noun. Taking this to be an independent clause, " of peoples" would mean groups of people, specifically--different ethnic groups. So, it would read to me: and they are the least safety conscious group of people because they profess a very low opinion of seat belts.

    That's how I understand it.
    Now to wait on some of our other grammarians.


    Smiles,
    Sweet Momma Sue

  3. #3
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: "peoples"

    I agree with Sue- a people can be a group, so if there are some groups, then we can have a plural:
    The people of the world = the individuals living on the planet
    The peoples of the world = the groups (nations, ethnicities, etc) living on the planet

  4. #4
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    Default Re: "peoples"

    @ SweetMommaSue & tdol,

    Thanks for your replies!

    This is the clarification I needed. Now, I can be certain for the full 100% I had a certain idea how to see "peoples" here, after having read the sentence a few times I thought it had something to do with a group or groups of people. But I was just guessing. I had never seen "people" in the plural form before.

    Kind Regards

    Johan

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