Apostrophes in contractions

Apostrophes indicate missing letters in contracted words and phrases:

I’m [I am]     you’re [you are]     there’s [there is]

she’ll [she will]     we’ll [we will]     who’d [who would]

can’t [cannot]     don’t [do not]     wouldn’t [would not]   

These contractions are particularly common in informal kinds of writing and when representing speech:

I’m fine, thanks.

I can’t believe she doesn’t like chocolate.

Don’t sit on that chair!

Some contractions with apostrophes sound the same as regular pronouns, but are clearly different when written. Take care when using these, as they are often misused:

it’s [it is]     It’s a sunny day.
its [possessive form of it]     The house was derelict; its windows were broken.

you’re [you are]     You’re too kind!
your [possessive form of you]     Your work is impressive.

they’re [they are]     They’re going to be late.
their [possessive form of they]     Their car has broken down.
there [at that place]     They will leave the car there.

who’s [who is]     Who’s going to the party?
whose [possessive form of who]     Whose clothes are these?

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