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apostrophe

noun apos·tro·phe \ ə-ˈpäs-trə-(ˌ)fē \

Definition of apostrophe

:a mark ' used to indicate the omission of letters or figures, the possessive case (as in "John's book"), or the plural of letters or figures (as in "the 1960's")
  • In the contraction "can't," the apostrophe replaces two of the letters in the word "cannot.".

apostrophic

adjective

Origin and Etymology of apostrophe

French & Late Latin; French, from Late Latin apostrophus, from Greek apostrophos, from apostrophos turned away, from apostrephein — see 2apostrophe

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms


2

apostrophe

noun apos·tro·phe \ ə-ˈpäs-trə-(ˌ)fē \

Definition of apostrophe

:the addressing of a usually absent person or a usually personified thing rhetorically
  • Carlyle's "O Liberty, what things are done in thy name!" is an example of apostrophe.

apostrophic

play \ˌa-pə-ˈsträ-fik\ adjective

Origin and Etymology of apostrophe

Latin, from Greek apostrophē, literally, act of turning away, from apostrephein to turn away, from apo- + strephein to turn

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms


APOSTROPHE Defined for Kids

apostrophe

noun apos·tro·phe \ ə-ˈpä-strə-fē \

Definition of apostrophe for Students

:a mark ʼ used to show that letters or figures are missing (as in “can't” for “cannot” or “ʼ76” for “1776”) or to show the possessive case (as in “Mike's”) or the plural of letters or figures (as in “cross your t's”)


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