Question from Jadie in the USA

How would the word hunter be spelled in the following sentence?
The sentence might go something like, “The hunter’s steel trap secured my foot to the forest floor.”
Would the correct spelling be hunters, hunter’s, or hunters’?
Thank you for your time,

Hi Jadie, your question is asking how we form the possessive in English and I’d put this question in the Top 10 of questions we get asked. I’ll run through it quickly in relation to your specific example and I’ve put several links at the end of this posting to other postings about the possessive and to the section in the English4Today Online Grammar on possessives.

Firstly, I’m assuming that there is only one ‘hunter’ in which case we would show that the trap belongs to the hunter by saying the ‘hunter’s trap‘ – that is with the apostrophe s following the ‘r’ of ‘hunter’. So this sentence is correct:

The hunter‘s steel trap secured my foot to the forest floor.

Just as an extra note here: hunters is plural and not possessive and hunters’ or hunters’s is the plural possessive.

See also: