Is it “year’s,” “years’” or “years?” The word “year” can take many forms when it starts to get pluralized. And when it begins to show possession. It can be highly confusing to remember which word form to use when referring to time. And multiple amounts of time.
Learn the difference between each word form in this short American English guide.
Is it “year’s” or “years’?”
Technically, both forms are correct. When we are referring to singular time, we would use “year’s” and when we are referring to the time that the expression is about, we would use “years’” with the apostrophe at the end of the word year.
Sentence examples using “year’s”
Here are sentence examples using the word “year’s”:
- We were offered one year’s worth of free hot dogs.
- I’ll be going away to college in one year’s time.
- I wasn’t able to get one year’s pay back from the IRS.
Sentence examples using “years’”:
Here are sentence examples using the word “years’”:
- In two years’ time we will have a fully operational garden.
- There is going to be about two years’ free insurance available to the family.
Compound adjectives referring to years
Compound adjectives connect two words with a hyphen. For example, “one year” would turn into “one-year.” And “two year” would turn into “two-year.” When saying “years,” it’s unnecessary to turn the word forms into compound adjectives.
Sentence examples with “two-year”
Here are sentence examples using the compound adjective “two-year”:
- It was a two-year long adventure with the other company they were part of.
How to use the apostrophe correctly
The possessive singular noun is made by adding an apostrophe and the letter “s” to the singular noun in question, regardless of whether the singular noun ends in an “s” letter.
When a plural noun has an “s” at the end, the possessive form of the noun is created by simply adding an apostrophe. When the noun ends in any other letter, the possessive form is made by adding both an apostrophe and an “s.”
|2 or more people||Kim and Adam’s|
|Singular noun ending in “s”||James’s and James’|
|Plural noun ending in “s”||Parent’s|
|2+ people||Kim’s and Adam’s|
|Apostrophe for Possessives||Apostrophe for Contractions|
|Amy’s swim class||they + have = they’ve|
|Karen’s car||are + not = aren’t|
|Robert’s vehicle||they + will = they’ll|
|Singular Noun||Plural Noun|
|My child’s dog||My children’s dog|
|The man’s work||The men’s work|
|The mouses’ cage||The mice’s cage|
|A person’s clothes||People’s clothes|
|Plural Noun Rule||Example or Exception|
|To make regular nouns plural, add ‑s to the end.||Cats, Houses|
|If the singular noun ends in ‑s, -ss, -sh, -ch, -x, or -z, add ‑es to the end to make it plural.||Bus / Busses, Tax / Taxes|
|In some instances, singular nouns ending in -s or -z, require that you double the -s or -z prior to adding the -es for pluralization.||Gas / Gasses|
|If the noun ends with ‑f or ‑fe, the f is often changed to ‑ve before adding the -s to form the plural version.||Wife / wives|
Roof / Roofs
Chef / Chefs
|If a singular noun ends in ‑y and the letter before the -y is a consonant, change the ending to ‑ies to make the noun plural.||City / Cities|
|If the singular noun ends in -y and the letter before the -y is a vowel, simply add an -s to make it plural.||Boy / Boys|
|If the singular noun ends in ‑o, add ‑es to make it plural.||Tomato / Tomatoes|
Photo / Photos
|If the singular noun ends in ‑us, the plural ending is often ‑i.||Cactus / Cacti|
|If the singular noun ends in ‑is, the plural ending is ‑es.||Ellipsis / Ellipses|
|If the singular noun ends in ‑on, the plural ending is ‑a.||Criterion / Criteria|
|Some nouns don’t change when they’re pluralized.||Sheep / Sheep|
Deer / Deer
Possessive Nouns and Plural Posessive Nouns FAQs
Can an apostrophe and an “s” together represent a contraction?
Yes. Two words put together to make a single word can also do this. For example: ice-cream. Or ice-cream. These can be compound nouns, as well. For example, “coffee table,” “forest fire.”
What is a plural possessive noun that ends in an apostrophe “s”?
An example would be “children’s clothes.” Without an apostrophe “s” and being a possessive noun would be: kids toys, smiths house (referring to the smith family). Each relate to different things but indicate possession.
What are the seven possessive nouns?
Mine, ours, yours, his, hers, its, and theirs.
What are the three rules of possessive nouns?
Rule 1: To form the possessive of a singular or to add an apostrophe and an s.
Rule 2: For a plural noun, add only an apostrophe (‘)
Rule 3: For a possessive noun that does not end in an “s” letter, add an apostrophe and “s” letter. For examples, “mice’s.”
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- Abstract Noun
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