Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1
    ladyinthemists is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    4
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Surname question, please

    If a surname ends in a "y", what is the correct way to show plural possession when an "s" is added at the end as in speaking of "the home of the Tenny family"? Would the appostrophe be before or after the "s" when indicating plural ownership? And, when speaking of a group of the Tenny family would it be "the Tennys" or (as someone seriously suggested to me) "the Tennies"? I know that in the case of a given name of a person who's name ends with a "y" possession is shown as "Sandy's" but I am unclear in regards to a surname when it relates to the possession of a family as a whole. Thank you for any assistance you may be able to offer me.
    Last edited by ladyinthemists; 26-Mar-2007 at 23:09.

  2. #2
    mykwyner is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,045
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Surname question, please

    The Tennys live in that house. It is the Tennys' house.

    Bob Tenny's car is parked in front of the Tennys' house.

  3. #3
    ladyinthemists is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    4
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Surname question, please

    Thank you so much. This settles my question and confirms what I had thought. I really appreciate your help.

    If I may ask another question...

    My screen name has always been "ladyinthemists"...I have a chat forum called "ladyinthemists' WW Point Counters." Is "ladyinthemists' " correct or should it be "ladyinthemists's"?

  4. #4
    mykwyner is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,045
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Surname question, please

    There is some controversy on this topic, but most usage manuals now say "spell it the way you pronounce it." We write, "That is the Joneses' house," because we would pronounce it Jonzez house; we write "...in Jesus's name," because we pronounce it Jezusez name. The consonant cluster at the end of mists's would be nearly impossible to pronounce, so all other rules aside, I would never spell it that way. It is ladyinthemists' website.

  5. #5
    ladyinthemists is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    4
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Surname question, please

    Thanks again, mykwyner, again that is what I thought but I tend to be a bit of a stickler for proper grammar so wanted to verify that the way I believed to be correct actually is correct.

    I love having been able to find this forum site in which to be able to pose questions of grammar when I feel the need. Thanks to whoever created this forum! Great job!!!

  6. #6
    mykwyner is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,045
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Surname question, please

    You're very welcome. As I said in my post, there is some controversy about the possessive form of some plural proper nouns. In the absence of hard and fast rules, we have to substitute most widely accepted over correct.

Similar Threads

  1. Question Structure
    By minamax in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 21-Feb-2007, 08:46
  2. Question about answer, reply,take care ...
    By JJD in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 25-Aug-2006, 03:24
  3. Types of question
    By Jupiter in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 15-Jul-2006, 11:33
  4. a question about first name and surname?
    By forrest in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 23-Jun-2005, 09:15

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Hotchalk