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The Correct Use of There/Their/They're

byR. Richard©

There/Their/Theirs/They're/There's

The words There, Their and They're are homophones. Homophones are words that are spelled differently, but sound the same. The following analysis shows a writer how to use the homophones. The related words Theirs and There's are also included in the analysis.

The misuse of homophones is one of the most frequently seen errors in submitted manuscripts. The homophone errors are particularly bad, in that they make the entire work appear amateurish and cause doubt about the worth of the work.

Hopefully, the following analysis will aid Literotica authors to improve their use of homophones.

There can be an adverb. An adverb is the part of speech that modifies a verb, adjective, or other adverb.

1: At or in a place "[You] stand over There."
2: To, into or toward a place. "I wouldn't go There again."
3: At a point or stage. "[You] stop right There before you say something stupid."
4: In a matter, respect or relation. "There is where I disagree with you."
5: Used as an interjection to express satisfaction, approval, encouragement or sympathy, or defiance. "There, now I don't have to worry about that anymore."

There can be an adjective. An adjective is the part of speech that modifies a noun or other substantive by limiting, qualifying, or specifying.
1: Used especially for emphasis after the demonstrative pronoun that or those, or after a noun modified by the demonstrative adjective that or those. "That person There ought to know the directions to town."
2: (Colloquial) Used for emphasis between a demonstrative adjective meaning 'that' or 'those' and a noun. "No one is sitting at that There table." "Them There beans ought to be picked." ['That there' or 'them there' are normally used by an uneducated person.]

There can be a pronoun. A pronoun is the part of speech that substitutes for nouns or noun phrases and designates persons or things asked for, previously specified, or understood from the context.
1: Used to introduce a clause or sentence: "There are numerous things to be considered." "There must be another way."
2: Used to indicate an unspecified person in direct address. "Hello There."

There can be a noun. A noun is the part of speech that is used to name a person, place, thing, quality, or action and can function as the subject or object of a verb, the object of a preposition, or an appositive.
1: A place or point. "He paused and then went on from There."

Examples:
"They say it is dangerous There." [They say it is dangerous in that place.]
"There is a football game scheduled." [A football game is scheduled.]
"There is a tide in the affairs of men." [A tide exists in the affairs of men.]
"There are numerous examples." [Numerous examples exist.]


Their is an adjective, a modifier before a noun.

Their may be the possessive form of they.
1: Used as a modifier before a noun. "He listed Their failures." "Their home town is Houston."
2. [Usage Problem] There is sometimes used as a general replacement for 'his', 'her', or 'its': "It was required for each student to list Their sex." [It is not generally accepted as a proper replacement.]

Examples:
"Their car is the red one." [The car belonging to them is the red one.]

"They are waiting for Their turn." [They are waiting for the turn belonging to them.]


Theirs is a possessive pronoun and is used with either a singular or a plural verb. Theirs is used to indicate the one or ones belonging to them.
1: That which belongs to them. Theirs is used without a following noun as a pronoun equivalent in meaning to the adjective their. "This game is Theirs."
2: Theirs is used with an indefinite third person singular antecedent. "I will do my part if everyone else will do Theirs."
Examples:
"The red car is Theirs." [The red car belongs to them.]
"If you do not have a compass, use Theirs. [If you do not have a compass, use the one belonging to them.]

[Note: There is no such thing as their's. The apostrophe would be used to show possession. Theirs is already a possessive.]

They're is a contraction of they are.

"They're not going to do it." [They are not going to do it.]
"Although they're succeeding now, they will fail in the end." [Although they are succeeding now, they will fail in the end.]

There's is a contraction for there is or (rarely) there has. [Note the apostrophe replacing the missing letter or letters.]

"There's more than one way to skin a cat." [There is more than one way to skin a cat.]
"There's always been a certain air about the place." [There has always been a certain air about the place.]

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