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The apostrophe (’)

Some people know of the apostrophe, but don’t know when to use it. We hope to help.

Look at this sentence:
It is Martin’s car.

We use the apostrophe here to show possession. The car belongs to Martin (Martin possesses the car) – it is Martin’s car.

When you write a sentence like this, and you’re not sure if you should use an apostrophe, try to ask yourself about possession. For example:
This cake is my mothers recipe.

Does the recipe belong to my mother? YES. So,
This cake is my mother’s recipe.

What about apples, pizzas, cars, tables, footballs? What about apostrophes here?

The words apples, pizzas, cars, tables, and footballs are plurals – more than one of something. You do not need an apostrophe for these.

To make some words into a plural (usually those that end in ‘y’), you add more than ‘s’, for example party – parties, lady – ladies. These do not need an apostrophe either.

When you write a word like this:
babies
Think to yourself: ‘Am I talking about more than one?’ If you are, then it is a plural, and you do not need an apostrophe.