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Thread: Language question

  1. #1 Language question 
    Forum Masters Degree thyristor's Avatar
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    Hi!
    I know this isn't exactly forum-related, but I didn't know where to turn. I hope you don't mind my asking this question too much.
    What I wonder (and I direct myself to those of you who are good at English, preferably those who have it as a mother tongue) is the following.
    Do you write Charles' or Charles's, when you want to mark the genitive case?


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  3. #2 Re: Language question 
    Forum Cosmic Wizard i_feel_tiredsleepy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thyristor
    Hi!
    I know this isn't exactly forum-related, but I didn't know where to turn. I hope you don't mind my asking this question too much.
    What I wonder (and I direct myself to those of you who are good at English, preferably those who have it as a mother tongue) is the following.
    Do you write Charles' or Charles's, when you want to mark the genitive case?
    Charles' is an older form of English, it's still pretty common in standard writing and some English style guides consider it right as well. Basically both are correct unless you're dealing with a strict grammar nazi.

    You're supposed to use the s in all cases except Biblical and Classical names.


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  4. #3  
    The Doctor Quantime's Avatar
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    Coming from England myself and having been being taught English the English way, I can tell you that you would put:

    Charles'

    Because if you didn't you could go Charles's's's's with no difference how many s' you put on the end.

    Think if how you say 'S'. You say Ess (in upper case) in lower case you say 'sssh'. When you say Charles you say 'Charle(sssh) as in lower case 's'. But if you say Charles's you say: Charle(sssh)(ez). But if you simply say it 'Charles' you say: Charle(sez).

    Of course you still say the charles the same, but in the one where you put 'Charles's you are adding a silent letter for no reason. The silent letter being the end 's' on top of one already there, thats like me in my name putting Stephphen. Two silent letters to mean a 'v' as in Steven, but the 'ph' means 'v' so it would be like putting 'phph' and still having only one 'v' because there is no need to say the silent letters twice.

    Phew. Mind mind's boggled now.
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  5. #4  
    Forum Masters Degree thyristor's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies!
    Ok, so Bad Wolf, says that it would be wrong writing Charles's, while i_feel_tiredsleepy says that both are correct. Anyone else who has an opinion on this matter?
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  6. #5  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard i_feel_tiredsleepy's Avatar
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  7. #6  
    The Doctor Quantime's Avatar
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    When a name ends in s, we usually treat it like any other singular noun, and add 's:

    * This is Charles's chair.

    But it is possible (especially with older, classical names) to just add the apostrophe ':

    * Who was Jesus' father?
    This is totally interdependent on the word that has the 's' on the end. For instance, we say Charles. But it is said like this: Charle(z)

    With Jesus we say: Jesu(sssh).

    So relate that to my previous post where I say:

    But if you say Charles's you say: Charle(sssh)(ez). But if you simply say it 'Charles' you say: Charle(sez).
    So you with the 's' at the end of Charles we say: Charle(z)(ez) Yet even without the extra 's' it is the same. When we say Charles without attributing possession we say 'Charle(z)

    Now relate that to Jesus:

    Jesus, pronounced: Jesu(sssh)
    W/ Possession: Jesu(sssh)(ez) You can say that without putting 'Jesus's'

    No to do Charles':

    Charles, pronounced (Charle(sssh) /or (z) if you say it differently.
    W/ Possession: Charle(z)(ez). With the extra 's' you get: Charle(z)(ez)(ez) if you apply the rule of the comma after the 's' on Charles' name.


    That website merly suggested the difference between age old names and common names. It would appear as though perhaps at times the extra 's' at the end of a name ending in 's' is appropriate, I'm not sure if it fits with Charles, but it might with another. The way you say 'Charles' and 'Jesus' end with a different sound. Charles ends with a (sssh) or (z) whereas Jesus' just ends with a (sssh)

    Je-suzshhh--suzshhh.
    Charle-zzz (it wouldnt make sense to say 'charlesss' would it?)
    Charle-zzz-ez

    PLEASE NOTE! If you try and say the 's' at the end of Jesus' 's' you say it differently, I would speculate this is due to the mouth being physically unable to produce the same sound for the same letter due to the mouth's different movement due to the previous letters spoken.

    I therefore conclude that perhaps the variation of ('s) and (s's) has come about due to this complication and more to the fact that Jesus was used by people before us who had a different language and were able to say a name and a possession to that name easier than we can.

    I evaluate then that my method of (s') might only apply to older names (which supports the OP's notation on Biblical naming). Yet at the same time, baring in mind that Charles ends being said with a 'z' in the voice rather than a 's', would allow for (s's) if Charles were spelt like this:

    Charlz'z. For if you were to say 'Charlz' you would say Chalrz' as possession in this way) as simply Charlz (as in you would say the non-possessing and possessing way the same).

    For instance: I know of Charlz, pronounced: Char-lzzz.
    I have Charlz' ball, prounounced: Charl-zzz.

    The name 'Charles' being used is completley bias to teaching you when to use charles' and charles's. More names should be used, old and new to the same and opposite circumstances.

    I'm sorry, but putting Charles's just seems totally wrong. I'm sorry if you can't understand perhaps in the same way likewise with me with you. I am going to stop now because me trying to explain forced me to delve deeper into something which I have never studied. On the plus side I hold what I came up with made perfect sense and say that from now on thyristor, if you come across needing to spell or say any name with a possession with an 's' you simply decide for youself which one fits best (s's) or (s'), (even if there is a true definition as which is true then find out).

    PS! I have just realised something, the s in Charles isn't actually pronounced as an 's' therefore in a vocal way, it would be appropriate for the name of Charles to put an 's' at the end of 's' on Charles, to omit any confusion when reading... for instance: Charlz's (in which case is how you say his name with possession).
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  8. #7  
    Forum Masters Degree thyristor's Avatar
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    Thanks a lot for the help.

    P.S.
    I think that I'll spell it Charles's.
    D.S.
    :-D
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