Sunday, October 5, 2008

My New Last Name

Thursday afternoon I went to Marrianne's Punky-Doodle party with the intention of ordering an address stamp like the one above. I know what our address will be when we move into our house, but I had not considered one small detail. I am a math teacher, so that's my excuse for not knowing the answer to this question. My maiden name is also Clark, so that's another reason why I never really paid much attention to this rule in English class. Anyway, the nice sales lady, Lucy, was writing down all of the info needed for the stamp. At the very top of the stamp, it was to say the plural of our last name. That's when it hit me that I didn't know how to pluralize Morris. No one else at the party did either. A few ladies thought it was The Morris', but that didn't look right or sound right to me. I just went with "The Morris Family" to be on the safe side. I came home and tried to find the answer on-line. According to one grammar web-site, it would have es added to the end. The example on the site read, We are going to visit the Joneses. So will Dave and I be The Morrises?? Help me out!! Does anyone know the correct way to write this? I'm sure Dave's step-sister Wendy, the English teacher, can tell me!!

Okay, I just did a spellcheck. Morrises was highlighted and Morris's was the suggested spelling. That does look better......Is that the proper spelling????

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  1. Well, I'm not sure either, Mandi. Does that mean the we are the Hickses??? Surely not. I think ours would be the Hicks'. You mean to tell me that your mom doesn't know? She's the one I always went to if I had a question like that. Or I bet Mrs. Harold would know. She's the grammar queen!

    1. No its not the "Hicks' "! You absolutely NEVER use an apostrophe to pluralize a word or name. Yours would simply be "Hicks"

  2. I have an address stamp also and LOVE it!! My mother gave it to me as a Christmas present from Initially Yours in Enterprise. I have had it for two years now and the ink is just now starting to run low. It will be a great time saver for you when you are writing thank-you notes for all of your wedding gifts. :)

    As for the spelling of your new last name.....You are suppose to add "es" to your last name. You wouldn't add the apostrophe because you aren't showing any ownership with the name: The Morris'(unless you say, The Morris' dog...then that would be correct) So....The Morrises would be way to spell it!! (Because that is the plural form...since there will be Dave Morris and Mandy Morris...does that make sense?) I hope so because I had to ask my "grammatically correct" mother! HAHAHAHA!! Now I need to correct my blog links to the "Hickses" and "Burgesses".

  3. Sorry! I spelled your name with a "y" instead of an "i".

    Did y'all have a fun high school reunion?

  4. Okay, so I went back and changed all of the families who's last name ended with an s and added "es". It does look strange, that's for sure. But if that is the way it is suppose to be, then so be it! :)

  5. Mandi,
    I have always wondered the same thing! I too thought you would use the apostrophe. I think that's what I have always done---apparently I have been wrong. It sure does look funny being spelled with "es". Now I know! Thanks Mrs. Hardy and Mrs. Kelley!!

  6. I may be gramatically incorrect, but we are either The Reeves Family or The Reeves. I do love those stamps, but I am waiting until I "get put" before we get one!

  7. Well, now I can get started correcting my blog. Thanks for the English lesson for the day, Mandi!

  8. Mandi,
    I'm sorry I didn't respond last night, but I was too tired to think. Julie is correct. You and Dave are the Morrises. I know it don't look correct but it is. You would not put an apostrophe unless you were showing ownership.. Thanks for the happy birthday, and yes, I think, Dave is old too!


  9. I just read your post, and I think it's hilarious b/c I'm so with you. I was a "Brown" before I became a Williams. I was confused when it came to Mrs. Williams's class. I ends in s, so the rule is-if it ends in s-you add 's, right? I know most people would just use "Mrs. Williams' class" but I never thought that was right. So, just wondering...will it be "Mrs. Morris's class"?
    ps-The AU tailgate party looked fantastic!!!!!

  10. you would only put the apostrophe in if your were claiming ownership of something, like the morris's house, the morris's dog, etc. so for just saying it, it would be the morris'. i always enjoy your blog!!!

  11. Too funny! I wasn't sure of the correct spelling either. That is why I listed everyone as The blank family on my blog instead of trying to make it plural! I guess now I know:)

  12. Mandy, I think this has already been settled, but just in case (I just found your site) I went back to my old English teacher textbooks days and found justification for your quandry. The plural of a proper noun ending in s is -es. It would the the Morris family or the Morrises.
    To show possession: 1)Use an apostrophe and -s to form the possesive of a of a singular noun, even one that ends in -s. (Morris's---although I have seen acceptable exceptions just using the apostrophe). 2) Use an apostrophe alone to form the possessive of a plural noun that ends in
    -s. (the Morrises' picnic). I hope this helps. P.S. We reallllyyy enjoyed the wedding (it was a welcome diversion to the fire we had the night before). Hope the house is coming along! Love ya, Cousin Janet (Mayes)