I read on a grammar website that names ending in a hard "z" sound should be left as-is (Johns) for its plural form. However, the name Jones is made plural by adding "es." Why is that since Jones has the hard "z" sound as well? And, are there cases where sometimes one would add "es" and other times not? Sigh.
Tired of not knowing how to pluralize my own last name.
I'm not sure who the "Johns" are. Are they two friends of yours both named John, if so, you would say, "I'm going to dinner with the two Johns tonight. You just add an s, because John ends in n, not s.
But, if it is a family with the surname Johns, then the plural would be Johnses.
Hope that helps! Some other common names as plural
That way you can see the pattern...es if it ends in s originally, just s if it doesn't.
For some reason that eludes me, many people use an apostrophe to try to pluralize a last name, e.g., "Jones's". That is one style of writing the possessive of Jones. The other style (and different style books variously offer these two styles) is Jones', as in "Jim Jones' dog is barking," or "Jim Jones's dog is barking". Plural forms of last names don't have apostrophes.
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Sorry I didn't clarify that Johns is a surname (mine for 3 years, as a matter of fact). I just have never been certain as to adding an "s" versus "es" to the last name Johns. And reading about the "hard z" sound threw me. While I don't consider myself a member of the "punctuation police," I do also get annoyed with people using apostrophes to pluralize words...lol. Must not have been paying attention during English class.
Again, thanks, and have a most wonderful weekend!
You are most welcome. You enjoy this beautiful fall weather over the weekend, too!
Anonymous:What about names ending in se? As in "I have three Denises in my class." Is that the correct plural for Denise?
Anonymous"I have three Denises in my class." Is that the correct plural for Denise?Yes. The plurals of proper nouns are formed according to the same rules as the plurals of common nouns. The only exception that comes to my mind is that the final y doesn't change:
a baby - babies
John Kennedy - the Kennedys
People are waiting to help.
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