I do wish I had seen the vicar, (church minister) running around with his paint buckets and brushes, in the town, in the United Kingdom, in which he ministers to his flock. 88|

The ubiquitous possessive apostrophe which is totally misused, or not used when it should be, irritated the man of the church so much, he took matters into his own hands to correct what he saw as an unholy omission that needed divine intervention, particularly in its reference to saints.


In a Kentish suburb, there were streets and centres named St Johns’; St Johns but, there were no St John’s. This error of punctuation he adjudged for absolute correction. The intrepid vicar undertook the total task of awarding all the St John’s he could find, the correct possessive order of the meritorious apostrophic flourish.




  1. I loved this story too – would that I had the time to go round correcting such grievous errors myself!

    One might get pelted by rotten tomato’s when wielding the marker pen in the green’grocers though!

  2. Hi Lois,

    It’s good to hear from you.

    I am disappointed that it is only a marker pen that you would wield in the green’grocers.

    It is a priceless bit of news but says a lot about the lack of knowledge of the punctuation of our own language. I don’t reckon that I am a cracker at it all, but I did learn about the meaning and use of apostrophes.

  3. There is a notice where I work which describes the work of the Victorian laundry at the ‘return of the century’ in most ungrammatical terms. It has been causing me pain ever since I started working there in 2003, and I may now take courage to correct the worst errors.

  4. Hi Lissa,

    Oh please let me know how you get on with your apostrophic and punctuation conquest. The misuse is an irritation beyond measure. The campaign a few years back appears to have lost momentum.

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