No apostrophe needed with possessive pronouns

Does overkill annoy you? Then fight back by saying NO to apostrophes after possessive pronouns.

Such pronouns are words like his, hers, its, my, mine, our, ours, their and theirs. They indicate something belongs to the person or persons that the pronoun refers to, as in Her cabin is several hours north of Chicago. In this sentence, the cabin belongs to whoever her is.

Apostrophes are used to show possession. For example, San Diego’s top problem is where to get fresh water for a growing population. The apostrophe tells the reader that the top problem belongs to San Diego.

Using an apostrophe with a possessive pronoun, however, is stating the obvious. A possessive pronoun by definition shows possession, so an apostrophe isn’t needed.

WRONG: Her’ flight went through Dallas to Los Angeles.
RIGHT: Her flight went through Denver to San Francisco.


My name is Rob Bignell. I’m an affordable, professional editor who runs Inventing Reality Editing Service, which meets the manuscript needs of writers both new and published. I also offer a variety of self-publishing services. During the past decade, I’ve helped more than 300 novelists and nonfiction authors obtain their publishing dreams at reasonable prices. I’m also the author of the 7 Minutes a Day… writing guidebooks, four nonfiction hiking guidebook series, and the literary novel Windmill. Several of my short stories in the literary and science fiction genres also have been published.