ProZ.com global directory of translation services
 The translation workplace
Ideas

 
Pages in topic:   [1 2] >
User
Thread poster: Williamson
The Saxon Genitive

Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:45
Flemish to English
+ ...
Dec 30, 2005

Having been a user of English since 1973, one of the grammatical rules I never quite captured was the rule of the Saxon genitive ending on s:

According to the person who edits my translations :

"Both are OK in fact. In order to avoid complications with too many 's' sounds at the end of words, some authorities prefer to add only the apostrophe to nouns ending in s or an s sound, for example, Jones', Joneses', princes', princes', princesses', the Schultzes' house."

This means that you can leave the second s off after the apostrophe if you prefer. Does this help?

As a matter of fact, it does not. It creates confusion about what is the correct form to use: both?




[Edited at 2005-12-30 20:57]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Walter Landesman  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 03:45
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
what I recall Dec 30, 2005


Williamson wrote:
Having been a user of English since 1973, one of the grammatical rules I never quite captured was the rule of the Saxon genitive ending on s:

According to the person who edits my translations :
"Both are OK in fact. In order to avoid complications with too many 's' sounds at the end of words, some authorities prefer to add only the apostrophe to nouns ending in s or an s sound, for example, Jones', Joneses', princes', princes', princesses', the Schultzes' house."

This means that you can leave the second s off after the apostrophe if you prefer. Does this help?

As a matter of fact, it does not. It creates confusion about what is the correct form to use: both?


As far as I recall, that is correct only for plurals. You always need the "´s" in singulars, even when ending with a "s". Examples:
The Joneses` house
Mr. Jones´s car
the princess`s dress

But maybe my memory is failing.....

Walter


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Giles Watson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 08:45
Member
Italian to English
Consult a style guide Dec 30, 2005

Hi Williamson,

This is not an easy area about which to generalise.

The Oxford Style Guide (I have the 2003 edition) has a whole series of indications and suggestions about the use of the apostrophe to mark possession on pp. 112-116, of which the most important is: "Euphony is the overriding concern, with the final choice affected by the number of syllables and the letters starting the next word".

For American customers, I use the Chicago Manual of Style as a basis when no in-house style guide is required. The 15th edition has on pp.281-286 a series of considerations that are similar, but not identical, to the notes in the Oxford Guide.

Of course, there are plenty of other excellent UK and US style guides, such as the Cambridge, Webster and MHRA publications, each with its own marginally different take on the problem.

In a nutshell, there is a bit of wiggle room for personal or institutional preference. When dealing with copy editors, though, it's always advisable to set the ground rules in advance. It makes life easier for everyone.

HTH

Giles


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Sol  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:45
Spanish to English
+ ...
Walter!!! Titi!!! Dec 30, 2005


Walter Landesman wrote:


titi@home wrote:
...

This is an English language forum. Write in Ebglish, please.

Walter


Wow, I was complaining to myself about the length of the original post, and now there are TWO very long posts in a language I can't understand.

As far as I know, if it ends in an s, just add the apostrophe.

Happy New Year!!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Walter Landesman  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 03:45
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
English here Dec 30, 2005


Williamson wrote:
Quizás mejor preguntarlo en Español? (:


I insist. This is an English language forum. Posts should be made in English, which everybody understands here. If you´d rather write in Spanish, French or any otther language, you may do in a non-English forum, i.e., Spanish forum.

And back to the topic, I repeat:
"As far as I recall, that is correct only for plurals. You always need the "´s" in singulars, even when ending with a "s". Examples:
The Joneses` house
Mr. Jones´s car
the princess`s dress
"
That is what I learnt. But grammar rules evolve and change.

Have a happy new year you all!

Walter


Direct link Reply with quote
 

TTW-Co.Ltd
Thailand
Local time: 13:45
French to Dutch
+ ...
I think you are right :-) Dec 30, 2005

Van Dale distinguishes three sorts of genetiv.

And Yes if it ends in an s, just add the apostrophe.

Oh well, let's leave it there.

Happy New Year to you all


Sol wrote:


Walter Landesman wrote:


titi@home wrote:
...

This is an English language forum. Write in Ebglish, please.

Walter


Wow, I was complaining to myself about the length of the original post, and now there are TWO very long posts in a language I can't understand.

As far as I know, if it ends in an s, just add the apostrophe.

Happy New Year!!


Direct link Reply with quote
 
tinageta  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:45
English to Latvian
+ ...
some references Dec 31, 2005

Some time ago I posted a similar question on Kudoz and received some enlightening answers, as well as useful references.

http://www.proz.com/kudoz/992067?float=1

Agnese


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Alessandra Sticotti  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:45
English to Italian
+ ...
what I've learnt Dec 31, 2005

Hi all!
English is not my mothertongue but I've been studying it for 20 years (I'm 25 now).
I've been taught that you use 's with singular nouns and plural nouns not ending in s (otherwise you use the ')
names ending in s can either take 's or ' alone

hope I've been taught right!

happy new year!
Alessandra


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:45
Flemish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
100% correct Dec 31, 2005

It is just that when participating in an admission exam or in an open competition number XYZ, your translation into English has to be 100% correct.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

writeaway  Identity Verified

Partial member
French to English
+ ...
I always thought Van Dale was a Dutch dictionary Dec 31, 2005


titi@home wrote:

Van Dale distinguishes three sorts of genetiv.

And Yes if it ends in an s, just add the apostrophe.

Oh well, let's leave it there.

Happy New Year to you all


Happy New Year!!
[/quote]



and fwiw-did you know it's FORBIDDEN to wish Happy New Year on Proz?


[Edited at 2005-12-31 10:41]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Richard Creech  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:45
French to English
+ ...
An apostrophe is always needed Dec 31, 2005

The apostrophe always occurs in the possessive form of non-pronominal nouns. What varies is the /s/ morpheme. The rule that tricks up many people concerns the useage of the /s/ morpheme in genitive plurals, where preferred usage calls for the addition of /s/ ONLY when it is articulated as an independent syllable. For example, a car belonging to the Williams family, and one belonging to the Johnsons, would be described as:

The Williamses' car BUT
The Johnsons' car

Nominative plural "Williams" becomes genitive plural "Williamses," as there is an added syllable at the end, but there is no phonetic variation for the nominative and genitive forms of "Johnsons."

Hope this helps! Happy new year to all!


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Pages in topic:   [1 2] >


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:

Moderator(s) of this forum
Fernanda Rocha[Call to this topic]
Laura Daly[Call to this topic]

You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

The Saxon Genitive






Across Personal Edition – Free Full Version for Freelance Translators
Across is an integrated CAT tool, which means that you will find everything you need in one place.

Freelance translators receive a full version of Across Personal Edition, a single-workstation version of Across, for free. You are always working in one and the same environment, regardless of whether you would like to create a new project, translate a do

More info »
SDL Trados Studio 2014 Starter Edition
Translation software for only €99 per year

The Starter Edition is an affordable but scaled down version of the industry’s leading translation software, SDL Trados Studio 2014 Freelance. It enables translators to join the largest supply chain at a reduced price.

More info »