Wheres The Apostrophe?

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If you are an English teacher or an English major, look away now, for this story will make your hair stand - And the worst part? - it is happening in England.

Birmingham, England's second-largest city has officially banned the use of apostrophes on street signs, purporting that they are confusing and old-fashioned. While the town council has been quietly taking away apostrophes since the 1950's, they finally officially banned them this week.

According to Councilor Martin Mullaney, the debate that finally broke the camel's or should we say the apostrophe's back was when they started to argue whether King's Cross should be changed to Kings Cross. He said the Council had spent countless hours debating on apostrophes, instead of discussing more important issues.

So now St. Paul's Square is St. Pauls Square and Acock's Green is Acocks Green. As for King's Cross? - well the little apostrophe there is history too!

This action has ignited protests from die-hard grammarians and the apostrophe protection society (yes there is actually a society!), who want the signs to remain in the Queen's English and not the Queens English.

However, the Council remains firm. As Mullaney puts it, since the King no longer owns the Heath, and the Acock family does not own the Green, the possessive mark is not in correct usage.

While this is a radical move in Queen's Country it is not by any means a pioneering one. Except for five exceptions, Americans got rid of the apostrophe from their street signs in 1890, with Australia following suit in 2001 - and guess what? - it has made no difference to the residents of these countries.

Sources: Timesonline, Msnbc.com

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94 Comments
  • wickedThursday, April 9, 2015 at 3:33 pm
    The poor the homeless the motor accident as and they don't Evan care
    • wickedThursday, April 9, 2015 at 3:31 pm
      I did . Not know that US aussies did that
      • JiggleMeTimbersWednesday, June 11, 2014 at 4:10 pm
        NO APOSTROPHE!!!!!!!! THE APOSTROPHE IS MY FAVORITE PART OF THE STREET SIGNS
        • katnisseverden
          katnisseverdenTuesday, February 16, 2021 at 9:21 pm
          Ummm.... street sign dont have sigh were i live and i dont think they should
        • headream100
          headream100Saturday, March 22, 2014 at 4:32 pm
          I mean, seriously? THE APOSTROPHE?????? Who cares about that? That's just weird, and it makes no sense.
          • vonicat
            vonicatTuesday, May 27, 2014 at 7:08 pm
            Words look weird without them, you got to admit
          • itsme
            itsmeSunday, March 2, 2014 at 10:45 am
            weird
            • rozeb
              rozebSaturday, January 18, 2014 at 7:29 am
              This article is weird. I mean, arguing about whether to put apostrophes on signs instead of the poor and hungry in their streets. I mean, hello people! There are people starving here! Are you going to help them or keep arguing about things that don't really matter?
              • neoncat
                neoncatSunday, March 23, 2014 at 7:25 am
                I mean really now.
              • rozeb
                rozebSaturday, January 18, 2014 at 7:24 am
                This article is kind of silly. I mean, who cares if there are apostrophes on signs or not? I live in the U.S. and there are no apostrophes on our signs.
                • headream100
                  headream100Saturday, March 22, 2014 at 4:32 pm
                  My point exactly
                • Pink_KittySaturday, January 18, 2014 at 5:44 am
                  I dont use them wen im texting see ;-) but it's not a verry good rule in like public and stuff
                  • mya23
                    mya23Friday, January 17, 2014 at 6:47 pm
                    This is not a good idea
                    • rainbowunicorn
                      rainbowunicornFriday, January 17, 2014 at 3:56 pm
                      that rule's bad
                      • rainbowunicorn
                        rainbowunicornFriday, January 17, 2014 at 3:58 pm
                        I am glad they didn't ban apostrophe's in america