Thursday, October 23, 2008

*UPDATED* Calling All English Majors

First of all, thanks for all your comments. Most people seemed to like Chess' better than Chess's, but through a little research, I think I am going to start using Chess's for two reasons.

1. Although both ways are correct, I found this semi-rule:

A singular noun ending in "s" takes either an apostrophe or the full 's depending on whether we pronounce the word with an added syllable or not.

For example, we say Chris-es house (Chris's house). We pronounce the extra syllable, so we write the full 's.
But, we say Achilles- heel (Achilles' heel). We do not pronounce the extra syllable, so we write only an apostrophe.

2. I saw this book cover:

I love Dr. Seuss, and if a triple S isn't too crazy for him, then it's not too crazy for me.


Since before Chess was born, I anticipated a problem using the possessive form of her name. I'm pretty sure the rule allows you to choose whether or not to add only an apostrophe, or an apostrophe and an s to make a singular noun ending in s possessive.

I have been using "Chess' toys" (for example) because her name ends in a double s making "Chess's toys" if I did it the other way and that looks a little crazy to me. But I am starting to rethink it because it looks like you should pronounce it just "Chess" instead of "Chess-es."

So what do you think? Chess' or Chess's


Whitmire Family said...

I'm no English expert, but I have always liked grammar...It's really whatever way you choose. As I learned it, when a name ends in an 'S', the rule is to add an apostrophe and an 'S', but there is an alternative to the rule that says you can just add the apostrophe without the 'S'. I personally like it with just the apostrophe without the extra 'S' b/c it looks funny to me the other way. I think most people know that Chess' is to be pronounced as "Chess-es". So I wouldn't worry about that.

Clint and Mary said...

I'm with Amy! No "s"...its too much. People will know that its Chess-es...and if they don't then you probably shouldn't associate yourself with them...use it as a rule for choosing your friends.

Kearl said...

Sorry to be the one commenting oppositely of everyone else, but I think the rule is that with names you use " 's" like Jesus's. Otherwise it looks like Chess is plural like boys' mean multiple boys, not that boys is a normal word ending in an 's' sound. And it probably should be pronounced "Chess-es" to be correct otherwise people won't know you're using the plural- they will when it's written, but not when it's spoken.

Henckel House said...

I learned that both were acceptable and, if I recall correctly, Chess' was first estabished as correct and Chess's was later accepted. says: "NOTE: Although names ending in s or an s sound are not required to have the second s added in possessive form, it is preferred.
Mr. Jones's golf clubs
Texas's weather"
so I guess it is truly up to you. Good luck!

Libby said...

From a mimi's viewpoint, I say it should be Chess'. Sure do love her, whatever you decide! She gets cuter every day! Love you all! Mom(Mimi)

The Shaws said...

Hi Ali, I already told you that I like Chess's.

Clint and Mary said...

yes...go with Dr. Suess...i support you!