Sunday, November 1, 2009

Grammar Sunday - Their vs. There vs. They're

Today is the first week of our weekly grammar review! A certain somebody who resides with me lost my copy of Strunk and White's Elements of Style. Until I find it or replace it, I will rely on Google to help me out.

Stacy asked to explain the difference between their, they're and there. Here we go!

Usage of their, they're and there:

1. Use there when referring to a place, whether concrete ("over there by the building") or more abstract ("it must be difficult to live there").

There is an antique store on Camden Avenue.
The science textbooks are over there on the floor.
There are many documents that are used in investigations

2. Use their to indicate possession. It is a possessive adjective and indicates that a particular noun belongs to them.

My friends have lost their tickets.
Their things were strewn about the office haphazardly.

3. Remember that they're is a contraction of the words they and are. It can never be used as a modifier, only as a subject (who or what does the action) and verb (the action itself).

Hurry up! They're closing the mall at 6 tonight!
I'm glad that they're so nice to new students here.


  1. LOL on loosing your book, I know who the culprit is! Great grammar point, one that I try my best to use properly. I can still hear my English teacher telling the class the same as what you've written. Great review!

  2. Thanks ~ I know many people who would benefit from this little refresher!

  3. Thank you. This is just one of my pet peeves in the world of texting and tweets where no one seems to have learned how to spell.