Plurals and Possessives for Names Ending in ‘s’
I have a cousin named Charles. His sister, the mom of a Travis, asked me recently how to form plurals and possessives of these s-ending names. Here’s the scoop:
If you want to refer to more than one Charles or Travis, it’s Charleses and Travises.
There are two Charleses in my class.
I invited three Travises to my party.
If you want to use the possessive forms of these names, you’ve got two options: You can add an apostrophe at the end of each name, or you can add an apostrophe s.
It is Charles’ car.
It is Charles’s car.
It is Travis’ pencil.
It is Travis’s pencil.
It’s just a matter of style here, and you get to decide which possessive version you like best.
What about last names that end in s?
These need es to become plural (as do names that end in x, z, ch, and sh).
The Joneses invite you to their holiday party.
The Rosses won the contest.
The Finches are driving across the country.
Do not use an apostrophe for the plural form of a last name ending in s. Apostrophes are for possessives.
It was the Joneses’ holiday party.
Did you see the Rosses’ prize?
The Finches’ cross-country trip was a success.
All other last names, including those that end in y—just add an s. If possessive, add an apostrophe after the s.
The Taylors are at the amusement park.
The Corys have a nice house.
The Taylors’ drive home from the park was long.
The Corys’ house is beautiful.