Advanced search

Nicholas's or Nicholas'

(21 Posts)
islandofsodor Tue 23-Sep-08 14:57:04

Am replying by email to an invitation.

Is it Nicholas's party or Nicholas' party. I have a feeling Lynne Truss says it could be either or am I being dense. I seem to remember something to do with St James's hospital on this point.

MarlaSinger Tue 23-Sep-08 14:58:23


I think you add the second S if you can hear it when you say it

Iklboo Tue 23-Sep-08 14:59:43

I will attend Nick's party

Apparently both are acceptable. I work in St James's building, but there's a St James' Road nearby?

nothorney Tue 23-Sep-08 15:00:32

I think it's Nicholas'...........?!

Lovingthepink Tue 23-Sep-08 15:01:43

MarlaSinger - could you give me an example of when you would not hear it. I am confused as I thought it was Nicholas' (am no English teacher though!!!!!)

Lovingthepink Tue 23-Sep-08 15:02:39

Nick's party would wrong.. it would be Nicks' party.

mybabysinthegarden Tue 23-Sep-08 15:03:06

It's Nicolas's iirc; you only drop the second s if the word is a plural, e.g. if you were going to the Browns' party.

wingandprayer Tue 23-Sep-08 15:03:07

Is Nicholas's. Would be Nicholas' if it was the party of lots of girls all called Nichola.

Iklboo Tue 23-Sep-08 15:04:04

It would be Nick's party cos there's onlyone Nick and it's his party?

mrsshackleton Tue 23-Sep-08 15:05:48

Wingandprayer is right
If you can hear the second s then you write it

Lovingthepink Tue 23-Sep-08 15:29:44

Thank you, I've learnt something today!!

zookeeper Tue 23-Sep-08 15:32:42

either would be acceptable

zookeeper Tue 23-Sep-08 15:32:52

to me lol

hatrick Tue 23-Sep-08 15:35:42

Message withdrawn

DaisySteiner Tue 23-Sep-08 15:39:20

Ooh, this is one of my bug bears! I get so fed up of seeing Thomas', Chris', James' angry I have even now started hearing (and seeing) x' (as in Mr Wilcox' party)

prettybird Tue 23-Sep-08 15:46:43

I believe either is acceptable - with the caveat that having chosen one form in a document, then you must be consistent throughout.

prettybird Tue 23-Sep-08 15:50:32

Found this

". Usage is divided in the situation where the final [s] or [z]
sound falls in an unstressed syllable (octopus'/octopus's,
phoenix's/phoenix', and so on)."

on this web site.

Woever, it does go onto say that....."The question of which suffix is correct arises less often than
one might imagine. Instead of saying "the crisis' start" or "the
crisis's start", most native speakers of English would say "the
start of the crisis", thus avoiding the problem."

MarlaSinger Tue 23-Sep-08 15:59:10

I think I meant what prettybird said, I read it so don't know.............

AllFallDown Tue 23-Sep-08 16:41:20

The commonly accepted usage among editors is that you use 's when you would expect to sound the second s. So Nicholas's in this instance. It is not incorrect to leave off the 's, but clarity and commonsense - which, rather than strict grammatical rules, are usually the best guides to language - suggest its usage is often preferable.

ditheringdora Tue 23-Sep-08 16:44:20

Either is fine. I would write "Nicholas's party myself" go, have fun, life's too short!

islandofsodor Tue 23-Sep-08 20:05:33

It's a classmate of ds's and unfortunately he can't go to Nicholas's party anyway but I know there are a few pedants amongst the parents so I wanted to get it right!!!!

Thanks all.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: