The Panda Says . . . idk.

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"Is this properly 'Lynne Truss' book' or 'Lynne Truss's book'?"
(Eats, Shoots & Leaves p. 55)

This is one grammar issue that has had me confused. I would periodically do one or the other, never sure which was completely correct. However, Truss supplies an answer:

"Current guides to punctuation (including that ultimate authority, Fowler's Modern English Usage) state that with modern names ending in 's' (including biblical names, and any foreign name with an unpronounced final 's'), the 's' is required after the apostrophe:

Keats's poems
Philippa Jones's book
St. James's Square
Alexander Dumas's The Three Musketeers

With names from the ancient world, it is not:
Archimedes' screw
Achilles' heel

If the name ends in an 'iz' sound, and exception is made:
Bridges' score
Moses' tablets

And an exception is always made for Jesus:
Jesus' disciples"

Sweet, here are the answers, right? Some of these just sound wrong to me though (I want to say Jesus's disciples), and Truss goes on to say "However, these are matters of style and preference that are definitely not set in stone...." My Firefox browser has everything ending in "s's" underlined as a grammatical error.

Sweet, I'm more confused. I guess I'll let style be my guide for this matter.

2 Comments

Tiffany Gilbert said:

Thats funny that you say computer and text messaging lingo make you cringe. The first time I downloaded aol, I was so confused and refused to use "lol" Like what the heck, why couldn't you say "haha" It's only one more letter. Anyways, I feel I have adapted to the lingo and it no longer bothers me, I'm sorry if that is not the case for you. :)

Journalists have addressed this problem through the Associated Press Stylebook, which offers a single set of rules (so that reporters writing for different papers will all follow the same sets of rules, so that their stories will be consistent and will read smoothly side-by-side).

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