A a


    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • UK Pronunciation
    • UK IPA
    • [uh-pos-truh-fee]
    • /əˈpɒs trə fi/
    • /əˈpɒs.trə.fi/
    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • [uh-pos-truh-fee]
    • /əˈpɒs trə fi/

Definitions of apostrophe word

  • countable noun apostrophe An apostrophe is the mark ' when it is written to indicate that one or more letters have been left out of a word, as in 'isn't' and 'we'll'. It is also added to nouns to form possessives, as in 'Mike's car'. 3
  • noun apostrophe the punctuation mark ' used to indicate the omission of a letter or number, such as he's for he has or he is, also used in English to form the possessive, as in John's father and twenty pounds' worth 3
  • noun apostrophe a digression from a discourse, esp an address to an imaginary or absent person or a personification 3
  • noun apostrophe words addressed to a person or thing, whether absent or present, generally in an exclamatory digression in a speech or literary writing 3
  • noun apostrophe a mark (') used: 3
  • noun apostrophe to indicate the omission of a letter or letters from a word or phrase (Ex.: o' for of, it's for it is) 3

Information block about the term

Origin of apostrophe

First appearance:

before 1580
One of the 35% oldest English words
1580-90; < Middle French (with pronunciation later altered by confusion with apostrophe2), replacing earlier apostrophus < Late Latin (> Middle French) < Greek apóstrophos (prosōidía) eliding (mark), literally, (mark) of turning away, verbid of apostréphein to turn away, equivalent to apo- apo- + stréphein to turn; see strophe

Historical Comparancy

Parts of speech for Apostrophe


apostrophe popularity

A common word. It’s meaning is known to most children of preschool age. About 75% of English native speakers know the meaning and use the word.
Most Europeans know this English word. The frequency of it’s usage is somewhere between "mom" and "screwdriver".

apostrophe usage trend in Literature

This diagram is provided by Google Ngram Viewer

Synonyms for apostrophe

noun apostrophe

  • footnote — an explanatory or documenting note or comment at the bottom of a page, referring to a specific part of the text on the page.
  • detour — If you make a detour on a journey, you go by a route which is not the shortest way, because you want to avoid something such as a traffic jam, or because there is something you want to do on the way.
  • difference — the state or relation of being different; dissimilarity: There is a great difference between the two.
  • incident — an individual occurrence or event.
  • divergence — the act, fact, or amount of diverging: a divergence in opinion.

Antonyms for apostrophe

noun apostrophe

  • accord — An accord between countries or groups of people is a formal agreement, for example to end a war.
  • sameness — the state or quality of being the same; identity; uniformity.
  • similarity — the state of being similar; likeness; resemblance.
  • agreement — An agreement is a formal decision about future action which is made by two or more countries, groups, or people.
  • directness — to manage or guide by advice, helpful information, instruction, etc.: He directed the company through a difficult time.

Top questions with apostrophe

  • when to use an apostrophe?
  • when to use apostrophe s?
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  • when do you use apostrophe s?
  • when to use an apostrophe in its?
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  • when to use apostrophe after s?
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See also

Matching words

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