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Pedants' corner


(53 Posts)
evianers Sun 12-Jan-20 14:34:15

Just arrived back in UK after 44 an absence of 44 years. Wow! what a challenge - but we are getting there.
Local shop with large blue sign above saying BARGAIN'S!!!!! Just recently, the astrophe disappeared. Spoke to the owner saying "super that you have taken out the apostrophe", to which she replied "oh, many people think it's a shame". "But it's plural, not possessive" said I. She really had no idea what was meant..........oh dear.

SalsaQueen Sun 12-Jan-20 21:20:06

Some market traders seem to use apostrophes where they are not meant to be....


Just wondering - why did you stay away for 44 years? And what's made you come back?

You'll certainly notice a LOT of changes.

Namsnanny Mon 13-Jan-20 02:28:27

Pedants corner is the correct place to chat/discuss apostrophe or the lack of.
Unfortunately it happens with predictable reliability.

What struck me was of all the things that could be mentioned about the changes in this country after 44 years, you chose punctuation smile

vampirequeen Mon 13-Jan-20 07:41:27

I think apostrophes should be dropped altogether. You can work out the meaning from the context.

Cunco Mon 13-Jan-20 08:29:44

I think apostrophes should always be used properly. There are already too many ways to be misinterpreted, especially online. Dropping one aid to communication is a step backwards in my view.

44 years ago! That would make it 1976. Two Labour leaders, a Royal family split, a British Formula One World Championship - pretty much the same! Oh! 16.5% inflation and a High Street shop [The Body Shop] actually opening so some things different. smile

maryhoffman37 Mon 13-Jan-20 10:36:04

It's a mystery to me why people find them hard. But it's not known as "the greengrocers' apostrophe" for nothing.

MaizieD Mon 13-Jan-20 10:49:16

I think that people find them hard because they don't have any idea why the apostrophe is being used.

How many people do know?

It is just possible that the mandatory reintroduction of formal grammar teaching in primary schools some 5 or 6 (or maybe more) years ago might lead to a revival of the correct use of the apostrophe, but as many primary teachers, who themselves were at school when the teaching of grammar was more or less abandoned, don't have much of a clue I'm not altogether hopeful.

I think, vampirequeen, that you have absolutely no idea about the function of punctuation. It's there to give the reader clues as to exactly how the written word should be interpreted. Familiarity with it makes reading faster as you don't have to waste time working out meanings from context.

aprilgrace Mon 13-Jan-20 10:56:08

I saw a lovely sign in a shopping centre last week announcing that the Glass’s Man wished a Happy New Year to all and would be back on Tuesday!

dragonfly46 Mon 13-Jan-20 11:00:34

You will find living back here a struggle.
I was away for 18 years and when I came back I felt I was living in a foreign country. So many things had changed.

nanamac77 Mon 13-Jan-20 11:01:06

Wood thoaz hoo donet kair abut aposstrofeys like spelin too bee enny oled how too?
Apostrophes have a purpose.They affect the meaning of what is written. I won't bore you with a lesson. It's quite easy to grasp if taught properly.
Unfortunately an idiot government decided that teaching English grammar in schools was a waste of time, so a whole generation of teachers do not know the rules.

Blinko Mon 13-Jan-20 11:02:09

Strange though it sounds, assuming that should have read 'The Glasses Man', then in a sense that apostrophe was used correctly.. in place of a missing letter or letters. Unusual and quirky use of the apostrophe.

4allweknow Mon 13-Jan-20 11:02:34

I still like to see apostrophes used correctly. Must admit though I do have to stop and think when using them. What I have recently found confusing is loose and lose. I have for as long as I can recall thought that loose is sounded the same as choose and lose is as in noose. But appears I am wrong loose is sounded as in noose. I too wonder why anyone would return after an absence of 44 years. It will be another world altogether.

vickya Mon 13-Jan-20 11:10:28

Some shop owners apparently use them wrongly so that people won't be able to resist coming in to tell them and then they chat and look at the goods ;)

vampirequeen Mon 13-Jan-20 11:11:37

MaizieD I know exactly how to use punctuation and do so in my writing. I just don't see the point of apostrophes.

Esspee Mon 13-Jan-20 11:13:03

In ‘74 I moved abroad, returning in ‘89. The cultural shock on my return was extreme. Took me years to adjust.
Good luck OP, are you finding it difficult?

NannyC2 Mon 13-Jan-20 11:21:21

Grammar is so important and should be used correctly. Sadly, I don't think it is taught as well as it used to be.
It's like the 'times tables' -many children don't have a good command of these, and they are so useful in so many ways.

grannytotwins Mon 13-Jan-20 11:32:59

My grandson is fourteen and goes to a special needs school. He’s a sweet boy and in many ways his mental age is around five. One thing he’s good at though is grammar and punctuation. His apostrophes, semi-colons, commas and full stops are perfect every time. If he can get these right, surely adults can? He’s definitely going to be a pendant’s corner member of the future!

Theoddbird Mon 13-Jan-20 11:40:25

One there was had to be taken out...simple

Candelle Mon 13-Jan-20 11:58:53

evianers, please do share your impressions of Blighty, 44 years on! It will be fascinating.

As to apostrophe use, I am old school - they make reading/understanding so much easier (when used correctly!).

I have a few friends/acquaintances who email and I have to sit and work out the actual content of their mails. Pure gobbledegook and occasionally it is really easy to misconstrue the real meaning of their mail!

granbabies123 Mon 13-Jan-20 12:19:43

I think you you would be surprised how much spelling punctuation and grammar is taught in junior schools . Children are picking it up really well. I think perhaps their parents generation were the ones who missed out.

rockgran Mon 13-Jan-20 12:23:09

We have a such a rich language and I am sad that it is being simplified to accommodate texting and other forms of speedy communication. I still cannot send a text without checking spelling and grammar.

Agranbytheendofthesummer Mon 13-Jan-20 12:25:54

Grannytotwins it Pedants’ Corner - many pendants, one corner.
From a pendant!!

Rocknroll5me Mon 13-Jan-20 12:28:22

local fish and chip shop, called Bryan's for years, rebranded itself to The Fishermans Wife.
I told them it made no sense.
but I could see they had no idea what I was talking about. I now go to Kirby's.

Mealybug Mon 13-Jan-20 12:46:01

A local hairdresser near me has a big name sign on the front of her shop saying "Doll'd up" and it annoys me every time I drive past.

nipsmum Mon 13-Jan-20 13:31:35

I don't care enough to waste time writing about it.