How to Use the Apostrophe (') in English

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    Use an apostrophe in possessive forms:

    • Jonathan’s car

    • the boy’s ball

    • Seattle’s best restaurants

    • My sister’s friend

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    We also use an apostrophe to show the plural of numbers and letters:

    • It happened in the 1950’s

    • How many n’s are in Cincinnati?

    And, of course, we use apostrophes to show missing letters or numbers in contractions or dates:

    • cannot=> can’t

    • do not=> don’t

    • they have=> they’ve

    • 1992=> ‘92

    • 2012=> ‘12

    Possessive pronouns do NOT need an apostrophe

    For example:

    Theirs: Does this computer belong to you?  No, it’s theirs.

    Hers: My hair is brown, but hers is blond.

    Yours: I don’t have an umbrella. Can I borrow yours?

    Ours:    This car is ours.

    Its:          The lion is licking its lips.



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