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When to use its versus when to use it’s

Posted by Wendy Wood on 20th November , 2020 in Grammar
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It’s and its create a lot of confusion.

Wouldn’t you think the possessive pronoun would take the apostrophe? It goes against everything we know to not use an apostrophe when we’re trying to say something belongs to “it”.

But, the apostrophe is only for the pronoun/verb combo of it is. So if it’s not short for it is, there’s no apostrophe.

It’s: Contraction of it is (It’s going to be a long day.)
Its: Possessive pronoun (The dog hung its head after being scolded.)

Wendy Wood, Proofreader


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