We use apostrophes (’) for three main reasons.
It is used in writing a contraction to show the place of the omitted letters.
can’t (= cannot)
it’s (= it is)
I’d (= I would/had)
who’s (= who is/has)
We use apostrophes in writing most possessives.
the girl’s father
three miles’ walk
two weeks’ work
my parents’ wedding
Possessive determiners and pronouns do not have apostrophes.
- This is yours. (NOT …your’s.)
- Whose is that coat? (NOT Who’s …)
Apostrophes are used in the plurals of letters, and often of numbers and abbreviations.
- Mind your p’s and q’s.
- It was in the early 1960’s.
Sections in this articleFull stops, question marks and exclamation marks
Colon and semicolon