b l o g
b l o g
Darling! Apostrophes aren't as slippery as olives in a martini glass. The rules are cut and dry (as vermouth)!
PLURAL: She was born in the 1960s.
When we're talking about decades, no apostrophe is required. It's a plural, such as cats, days, manuscripts. No apostrophe.
ABBREVIATION: She was born in the swinging '20s.
For abbreviations of decades, we will introduce the apostrophe, which acts similarly to the apostrophe in a contraction: "can not" to "can't." It replaces missing material (letters or numbers).
If you can't remember this rule, you could also simplify and say, "She was born in the sixties."
POSSESSIVE: He wore a 1980s' hairstyle.
In the above example, 1980s' is plural and possessive. It's possessive because the hairstyle is being attributed to the 1980s. (Note: the apostrophe is after the "s.")
From April 2006 to April 2009, I was living, travelling, working, and studying in Asia. Mostly working. I was an ESL teacher in South Korea, but I took 8 months to travel in SE Asia and 1 week in Japan. During this time, I noticed something fascinating.
In Korea, if you want a cup of tea, it’s called cha, with the “ch” making the sound you hear in "church." S. Korea has an amazing selection of teas and infusions, many of them medicinal. They also have a tea ceremony, which many people only associate with Japan. My favourite teas were “daechu cha” made with jujubes, “nok cha” or green tea, “bbongnip cha” made with mulberry leaves, “solnip cha” made with pine needles, and finally the delicious and medicinal “ssanghwa cha” or double fire tea.
It was July in South Korea in a concrete building that was now a school but used to be a factory, and the air conditioner (aka air con) was broken. For those of you who don't know, July is monsoon month in South Korea and it's also over-the-top hot. In that month, I saw and exposed more sweat marks in embarrassing places than I have had in my entire life all together.
Is it a, b, and c? Or...
...is it a, b and c?
The serial comma is placed after the second to last element in a series and before the coordinating conjunction (i.e., and, or, nor).
For such a little mark, there are widely diverging opinions—and conventions.
Meet the Editor
I'm Coreen, and I am a copy editor, writer, instructor, digital marketer, and student of PR and Communications for organizations doing positive work in the world.