Party Invitation Etiquette – Pluralization of Names

I know what you’re thinking…Didn’t we have enough grammar lessons in grade school?  I’ll be the first to say yes, but when you think about it, it’s amazing how much we forget if we’re not practicing our grammar rules on a daily basis like we did back in the day, and using the proper grammar is essential in conveying the correct information to your guests.

One of the most common grammar mistakes we notice on invitations is the incorrect usage of apostrophes when trying to show (or not show) ownership, especially when pluralizing your last name.  Can you imagine having the last name of Adams and pluralizing it the wrong way for years?  No need to worry, we’re here to help!  One of the most easy things to remember is that when pluralizing a name or showing ownership, you never change the base of the name.

If you have a last name that ends with an “s”, for example, Adams, Jones, Rodrigues and you want to show ownership, the use of an apostrophe is appropriate.  When someone’s last name ends with a hard “z” sound, we typically don’t add the -s or -es, but instead simply add an apostrophe to the end of the name to read:

The Adams’ house.

The Rodrigues’ new car.

If you have a last name that ends with an “s” or an “x” and you are trying to pluralize the name, (make it more than one person, or referring to the family as a whole), you do NOT use an apostrophe to make a name pluralized.  Instead, you will add the “es” we spoke about in the prior paragraph.  For example:

The Adamses bought a car today.

The Foxes are coming over for dinner.

If you’re just not comfortable with the apostrophe and adding an “s” or “es” thing, make it easy on yourself and be specific.  Instead of saying, “Hosted by the Adamses” say, “Hosted by the Adams family”.  Much easier, right?  Many writers also think that this form of writing is much more specific and preferred to the pluralization forms.

Tags: grammar, how to pluralize a last name ending in s, how to pluralize a name ending in s, how to pluralize last names, how to show ownership with last names, Party Invitation Etiquette, pluralization of last names, proper Invitation Etiquette

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