noun, plural S's or Ss, s's or ss.
Origin of 's1
Origin of S.1
Origin of S.2
Origin of S.3
Origin of -s1
Origin of -s2
Origin of -s3
Origin of -s4
Examples from the Web for s
In our headlong quest for a legally perfect society, we don’t take the time to take stock of what‘s been created so far.
A third cabinet member used public funds to pay in an S & M bar.
In an airline seat, the hips and pelvis rotate forward and the S curve flattens.Flying Coach Is the New Hell: How Airlines Engineer You Out of Room|Clive Irving|November 25, 2014|DAILY BEAST
“Even now, I mean, there are guys now saying that I am full of s***,” he said.Bin Laden ‘Shooter’ Story Is FUBAR, Special Ops Sources Say|Shane Harris|November 7, 2014|DAILY BEAST
All I want is for them to find the a*******s who did this.Family's Best Friend Charged With Murdering Them All|Nina Strochlic|November 7, 2014|DAILY BEAST
I ain't any patience with a man,' s'I, 'that lives on his toes.Friendship Village|Zona Gale
I s'pose he wasn't going to take any chances of losing his heiress.The Mystery of Murray Davenport|Robert Neilson Stephens
I s'pose th' children of all such would come in for their share—eh, Judge?An Alabaster Box|Mary E. Wilkins Freeman and Florence Morse Kingsley
"A bos'n's pipe," said Captain Bonnet, a hand cupped at his ear.Blackbeard: Buccaneer|Ralph D. Paine
Who do you s'pose Stephen Clark went home with from meeting to-night?Chronicles of Avonlea|Lucy Maud Montgomery
noun plural s's, S's or Ss
- something shaped like an S
- (in combination)an S-bend in a road
- (the former) schilling
- (the former) sucre
Word Origin for S.
Word Origin for -s
Word Origin for -s
Word Origin for -s
suffix forming the possessive singular case of most Modern English nouns, its use gradually was extended in Middle English from Old English -es, the most common genitive inflection of masculine and neuter nouns (cf. dæg "day," genitive dæges "day's").
Old English also had genitives in -e, -re, -an, as well as "mutation-genitives" (cf. boc "book," plural bec), and the -es form never was used in plural (where -a, -ra, -na prevailed), thus avoiding the verbal ambiguity of words like kings'.
In Middle English, both the possessive singular and the common plural forms were regularly spelled es, and when the e was dropped in pronunciation and from the written word, the habit grew up of writing an apostrophe in place of the lost e in the possessive singular to distinguish it from the plural. Later the apostrophe, which had come to be looked upon as the sign of the possessive, was carried over into the plural, but was written after the s to differentiate that form from the possessive singular. By a process of popular interpretation, the 's was supposed to be a contraction for his, and in some cases the his was actually "restored." [Samuel C. Earle, et al, "Sentences and their Elements," New York: Macmillan, 1911]
As a suffix forming some adverbs, it represents the genitive singular ending of Old English masculine and neuter nouns and some adjectives.
suffix forming almost all Modern English plural nouns, gradually extended in Middle English from Old English -as, the nominative plural and accusative plural ending of certain "strong" masculine nouns (cf. dæg "day," nominative/accusative plural dagas "days"). The commonest Germanic declension, traceable back to the original PIE inflection system, it is also the source of the Dutch -s plurals and (by rhotacism) Scandinavian -r plurals (e.g. Swedish dagar).
Much more uniform today than originally; Old English also had a numerous category of "weak" nouns that formed their plurals in -an, and other strong nouns that formed plurals with -u. Quirk and Wrenn, in their Old English grammar, estimate that 45 percent of the nouns a student will encounter will be masculine, nearly four-fifths of them with genitive singular -es and nominative/accusative plural in -as. Less than half, but still the largest chunk.
The triumphs of -'s possessives and -s plurals represent common patterns in language: using only a handful of suffixes to do many jobs (e.g. -ing), and the most common variant squeezing out the competition. To further muddy the waters, it's been extended in slang since 1936 to singulars (e.g. ducks, sweets, babes) as an affectionate or diminutive suffix.
Old English single-syllable collectives (sheep, folk) as well as weights, measures, and units of time did not use -s. The use of it in these cases began in Middle English, but the older custom is preserved in many traditional dialects (ten pound of butter; more than seven year ago; etc.).
third person singular present indicative suffix of verbs, it represents Old English -es, -as, which began to replace -eð in Northumbrian 10c., and gradually spread south until by Shakespeare's time it had emerged from colloquialism and -eth began to be limited to more dignified speeches.