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Is It "on It's Way" Or "on Its Way"?  
User currently offlineZakHH From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10602 times:

As the title says. English is not my mother tongue, and a quick online research did not really help me, as both variants seem to be used frequently.

So which one is correct? Thanks for your help!

17 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineJGPH1A From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10593 times:

"It's " is a contraction of "it is", as opposed to "its" which is the possessive form of "it".

So the correct spelling would be "It's on its way".


User currently offlineMyt332 From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2003, 9112 posts, RR: 70
Reply 2, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10593 times:

Quoting ZakHH (Thread starter):
So which one is correct?

What the toff like surrender monkey said.  Wink



One Life, Live it.
User currently offlineTedTAce From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10586 times:

I would think that it would always be it's as it is contracting the two words: "It Is". I can't think of a way for it to be proper to say the "its" are comming, because then you should be saying they are comming.

User currently offlineCory6188 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2692 posts, RR: 5
Reply 4, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10575 times:

Just to clarify JGPH1A's point, you would use "its" regardless of the subject. You could say, "The book is on its way." You don't use an apostrophe because it shows possession; the "way" belongs to the book, so to speak.

User currently offlineBraybuddy From India, joined Aug 2004, 5793 posts, RR: 32
Reply 5, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10572 times:

Quoting JGPH1A (Reply 1):
So the correct spelling would be "It's on its way".

JGPH1A points out the correct spelling, but I can understand the confusion for foreigners: the possesive form always takes an apostrophe, yet "its way" doesn't, obviosuly to distinguish it from "it's", ie the contraction of "it is".

Quoting Cory6188 (Reply 4):
You don't use an apostrophe because it shows possession; the "way" belongs to the book, so to speak

Yet "it" is a pronoun, so why can it not have the posessive "it's"?

Can some expert expand on this?

[Edited 2006-06-12 13:15:38]

User currently offlineTedTAce From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10563 times:

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 5):
Can some expert expand on this?

Where's Red-n-Gold when you need her?


User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9533 posts, RR: 42
Reply 7, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10563 times:

Quoting TedTAce (Reply 3):
I can't think of a way for it to be proper to say the "its" are comming, because then you should be saying they are comming.

Um... okaaay.  crazy 

Quoting Cory6188 (Reply 4):
You don't use an apostrophe because it shows possession; the "way" belongs to the book, so to speak.

I'm not sure that helps since you could then say "I am awaiting the book's delivery", where the delivery belongs to the book. "Its" behaves differently, however.

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 5):
the possesive form always takes an apostrophe, yet "its way" doesn't, obviosuly to distinguish it from "it's", ie the contraction of "it is". Can some expert expand on this?

Precisely and, no, I can't expand on that. It just is, OK?  Smile


User currently offlineOly720man From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 6840 posts, RR: 11
Reply 8, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10557 times:

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 5):
JGPH1A points out the correct spelling, but I can understand the confusion for foreigners: the possesive form always takes an apostrophe, yet "its way" doesn't, obviosuly to distinguish it from "it's", ie the contraction of "it is". Can some expert expand on this?

Some info here

http://www.sharpwriter.com/aaacontent/apostrophe.htm

Note that other personal possessives do not have an apostrophe

ours
his
hers
whos



wheat and dairy can screw up your brain
User currently offlineJGPH1A From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10547 times:

Quoting Oly720man (Reply 8):
whos

I thought it was "whose", as in "an idea whose time has come". I could be wrong.


User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9533 posts, RR: 42
Reply 10, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10537 times:

Quoting JGPH1A (Reply 9):
Quoting Oly720man (Reply 8):
whos

I thought it was "whose", as in "an idea whose time has come". I could be wrong.

I'll go along with that.

Quoting Oly720man (Reply 8):
Note that other personal possessives do not have an apostrophe

True and a lot of people should note that neither do plurals!


User currently offlineOly720man From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 6840 posts, RR: 11
Reply 11, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 10537 times:

Quoting JGPH1A (Reply 9):
I thought it was "whose", as in "an idea whose time has come". I could be wrong

Bangs head against wall.... you're right.



wheat and dairy can screw up your brain
User currently offlineZakHH From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 10507 times:

Okay, thanks everyone. Indeed, I used "its" all the time, but was confused to find a lot of sources that would use "it's" instead. Well, in Germany we call that "Deppenapostroph"...  Wink

Anyway, I should have written "on the way" - would have made things much easier... Big grin


User currently offlineCarmenlu15 From Guatemala, joined Dec 2004, 4763 posts, RR: 30
Reply 13, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 10477 times:

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 5):
Yet "it" is a pronoun, so why can it not have the posessive "it's"?

Can some expert expand on this?

I'm not an expert (heck, I'm not even a native English speaker), but from what I recall from my grammar courses...

Possessive nouns use an apostrophe; possessive pronouns do not.

Hope that helps...
Carmen



Don't expect to see me around that much (if at all) -- the contact link should still work, though.
User currently offlineBaylorAirBear From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 2913 posts, RR: 49
Reply 14, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 10471 times:

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 5):
Yet "it" is a pronoun, so why can it not have the posessive "it's"?

It's was already taken.

I hope Ba757gla doesn't show up with any advice.

BAB Big grin



I'm just skipping stones...
User currently offlineTS-IOR From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 3489 posts, RR: 6
Reply 15, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 10459 times:

Une fois n'est pas coutume the French JGPH1A explained it very well...probably because he is not from the Metropole  Wink

User currently offlineBraybuddy From India, joined Aug 2004, 5793 posts, RR: 32
Reply 16, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 10439 times:

Quoting Carmenlu15 (Reply 13):
I'm not an expert (heck, I'm not even a native English speaker), but from what I recall from my grammar courses...

Possessive nouns use an apostrophe; possessive pronouns do not.

Well your English is better than most of us native speakers Carmenlu -- I've noticed that before in your posts.

That grammar rule makes perfect sense, I can't remember it from school, but it explains the difference perfectly.


User currently offlineKaddyuk From Wallis and Futuna, joined Nov 2001, 4126 posts, RR: 25
Reply 17, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 10408 times:

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 16):
That grammar rule makes perfect sense, I can't remember it from school, but it explains the difference perfectly.

English sucks the honoured male shaft... I much prefered Physics at school...



Whoever said "laughter is the best medicine" never had Gonorrhea
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