We sometimes need to describe a noun by using another noun with it. We use this other noun:

-S ending

We usually use this:


Tehya's boss (the boss of Tehya)

Ahmed's menu (the menu which Ahmed must make)

I went to Smokey's (the restaurent where Smokey cooks)

this server's ability (ability which this server has)

a girls' restroom (a restroom for girls)

a children's highchair (chair where children can sit)

a smoker's lounge (a place where people who smoke can smoke)

NOTICE: Plurals without s use 's (NOT s').


today's program
three weeks' holiday
a few minutes' rest

NOTICE: The noun with the -s ending goes before the noun it describes.


We use this with most other nouns. For example:

the corners of the room (NOT the room's corners)

the history of Canada

the capital of Alberta

NOTICE: The noun with of goes after the noun it describes.


We usually use this when we are talking about a type of something.

booster seat (NOT booster's seat)

sirloin steak (NOT sirloin's steak)

coffee shop (NOT coffee's shop)

sous chef (NOT sous's chef)

caeser salad (NOT caeser's salad)

a teacup = a cup you can use for tea
a cup of tea = a cup with tea in it
a shopping bag = a bag you can use for shopping
a bag of shopping = a bag with shopping in it

-s ending and of

Normally we say Maria's cousin or John's book or my father's friends, especially if we have already mentioned the cousin or the book or the friends. But if we want to be more indefinite, and especially if we are mentioning them for the first time, we say:

a cousin of Maria's
a book of John's
some friends of my father's

We can also use personal pronouns (Unit 50) this way:
an uncle of mine (I am not telling you which one.)

BUT the second noun must describe a person. We say:
a corner of the room (NOT a corner of the room's)
And we must know which person. We say:
a student's book (NOT a book of a student's)

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Exercise 49.1
Exercise 49.2
Exercise 49.3