1. The possessive ‘s’ (or genitive) shows that something belongs to someone (or something). For example, ‘Donnie Brown wanted to buy Annie’s house‘. The genitive shows that the house belonged to Annie.
2. Look at this sentence: ‘Annie’s been living in the Argent valley all her life‘. Here, the ‘s = has. In other words, it is NOT the genitive – it is a contraction. It is part of a verb phrase and means ‘has’.
3. Look at this sentence: ‘The road’s full of holes‘. Here, the ‘s = is. In other words, the ‘s in not the genitive – it is a contraction and a verb.
4. Look at this extract from The Lake (Chapter 3) and find the examples of ‘s. What do they mean?
Donnie shut his car’s door and wiped his forehead with a silk handkerchief. He liked it when people called him ‘Big’ – ‘Big’ Donnie Brown of Brown Construction, with big ambitions and big plans for Argent valley. He started with nothing and now he drove a top-of-the-line luxury Mercedes. He was a big man. ‘Damn, it’s hot,’ he muttered, gazing at the clear blue sky above. It was not much past ten in the morning and already the temperature was in the mid-eighties.
5. Look at these sentences. What do the ‘s in them mean?
a. Annie’s dog’s called Rufus.
b. Donnie’s had his construction company for years.
c. The hot weather’s making Donnie sweat.
d. Donnie’s driven all the way from Easton.
e. Annie’s grandfather’s house’s old.
f. Coffee’s what Annie prefers to drink in the morning.