Links and visuals illustrating an orthographic pet peeve.
This was in an article online about the unfortunate death of two young children.
I had never seen an apostrophe used like this before.
(Thanks, Mary Fox!)
Posted in Uncategorized.
By Readers Like You
– August 23, 2012
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It’s a possessive apostrophe – very old school – and this is how I was taught to use it while at school in Australia in the seventies and eighties…so *technically* the above is correct, if more than a little obsolete.
I must disagree, PK. There’s no reason at all to put an apostrophe at the end of the word. *Its* it the possessive form without the apostrophe. *It’s* is the way of showing that there has been an omission, as in *it has*, or *it is*.
In modern usage, yes – but as I said, this is an obsolete way I was taught through 12 years of schooling and college-level English courses in the seventies and eighties in AUSTRALIA. The US system might not have taught it the same way we were. I can still remember (though not the exact year) when my brothers were in school in the nineties and the possessive apostrophe was dropped (because it was deemed irrelevant), going from its’ to its. Disagree all you want – but once upon a time it WAS correct English – if not correct American English.
If you can’t remember whether you’re supposed to use its or it’s, use neither! Then it will look like a typo instead of a grammatical error! Totally legit logic!
I’m afraid you were taught incorrectly PK. There is no possessive its – the apostrophe is only used in the conjuction of it is.
As I said in my comment – it is an OBSOLETE version that we were taught through 12 years of schooling and college-level English here in Australia. And as I replied to Nicole above, I remember when my brothers were in school in the nineties, it was dropped, since the possessive apostrophe was redundant and irrelevant. So when you were at school, it may have been different, but it’s how I was taught. I do not use it, since as I said, it is an OBSOLETE format, but I can still remember when it was not.
Just remember one point and you’ll never make this mistake again: “it’s” always means “it is” or “it has” and nothing else.
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