Sunday, August 8, 2010

Lexicographic error; a friend of (double possessive/of possessive)
"A lexicographic error is an inaccurate entry in a dictionary."


possessive, double
a nephew of John
(rather than "a nephew of John's")

(In my google docs)
"McGrawl-Hill's essential ESL Grammar"
Double Possessive
He is a friend of (name)
He is a friend of (name)'s

"She is a friend of Harry"

[quote]However, all the writing manuals I own say that "a friend of my mother's" is idiomatically acceptable.[end quote]

"a friend of my (uncle/uncle's)"


John is a friend of Bill/Bill's

A friend of Stan/Stan's
R.L.: "The possessive
form is more common in American English (and possibly in British
English as well; I just don't know) than the alternative without the
's. .... In some cases you have to use the possessive to differentiate
one meaning from another; compare "A bone of the dog" and "A bone of
the dog's."

a friend of George/George's

a friend of John/John's
E.K.: (Note: this is what I'm familiar with)
In the US, a "Friend of John" could well imply that John was some
high-ranking individual and the person being described had no official
position but was known to have a fair amount of influence because of
his personal friendship with John.  I think that this started with
(Friends of) Bill Clinton in the early '90s.  Where I worked, "Friend
of Joel" and (later) "Friend of Dick" (where Joel and Dick were heads
of Labs) were often heard informal titles for certain people.
Note ....
They have different meanings, .....
A "friend of John's" is someone John has friended.

A "friend of John" is someone who has friended John, but John has not
necessarily reciprocated.