所有格的形成

所有格與名詞連用,即表示一個物體與另一物體的從屬關系。如要形成所有格,則在名詞字尾加「's」即可。如果名詞為複數,或字尾是 s,就只要在字尾後加撇號即可。

舉例
  • the car of John = John's car
  • the room of the girls = the girls' room
  • clothes for men = men's clothes
  • the boat of the sailors = the sailors' boat

對於以 s 結尾的名字,可以選擇在字尾加撇號和 s,或只加一個撇號,前者較為常用。在所有格的名字上,我們會在名字的尾音加上 /z/ 音。

舉例
  • Thomas's book (或 Thomas' book)
  • James's shop (或 James' shop)
  • the Smiths's house (或 the Smiths' house)
所有格的作用

所有格最常表達的關係是「屬於」或「擁有」。

舉例
  • John owns a car. = It is John's car.
  • America has some gold reserves. = They are America's gold reserves.

所有格也可以表達某人工作、讀書或消磨時間的地方。

舉例
  • John goes to this school. = This is John's school.
  • John sleeps in this room. = This is John's room.

所有格可以表達兩人之間的關係。

舉例
  • John's mother is running late.
  • Mrs Brown's colleague will not be coming to the meeting.

所有格也可以用於表達無形的事物。

舉例
  • John's patience is running out.
  • The politician's hypocrisy was deeply shocking.
固定表達方式

有幾種固定表達方式會用所有格。

帶有時間的例子
  • a day's work
  • a month's pay
  • today's newspaper
  • in a year's time
其他例子
  • For God's sake!(= 惱怒的驚嘆詞)
  • a stone's throw away(= 非常近)
  • at death's door(= 病得很重)
  • in my mind's eye(= 就我的想像)

也可用職稱或人名的所有格來表達某人創立的店家、餐廳、教堂和大學等機構。

舉例
  • Shall we go to Luigi's for lunch?
  • I've got an appointment at the dentist's at eleven o'clock.
  • Is Saint Mary's an all-girls school?