Submitted by chris2 on June 10, 2009

Plural proper nouns ending in consonant-y

What about proper nouns as in team mascots? Our school mascot is a Grizzly. Would students be Grizzlies or Grizzlys? Since it’s a school’s mascot I’d like for it to be correct, but for the last 20 years it’s been spelled Grizzlies. I believe that spelling to be incorrect. Academic input please:o)

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That great hunter Teddy Roosevelt - after whom the teddy bear was named - spelled the word 'grisly'. I don't think there was any semantic reason to do so.
His memoir 'Ranch Life & the Hunting Trail', illustrated by Remington, is a wonderful read.

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'Pony' makes 'ponies'.
'Donkey' makes 'donkeys'.
But I think it's 'grizzlies' anyway.

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I think it's Grizzlies

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Pony and city are not proper nouns.

How do you pluralize a name ending in y?

Ex: There were three different Andys in the room? Should an apostrophe be used?

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Is there an an exception to the rule of taking off the y and adding ies to the end of a word.

Many thanks
Maryary

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pony ponies
city
cities

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thanx nobody else could help me?

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The correct plural of "grizzly" is "grizzlies."

The rule for plural nouns ending in "y" is this:

If the "y" is preceded by a vowel the plural is formed by adding an "s."

If the "y" is preceded by a consonant the plural is formed by omitting the "y" and substituting "ies."

Note that neither "grizzly bear" nor "grizzly" (in the sense of a bear rather than as an adjective) are proper nouns. A proper noun is one that designates a particular being or thing. "Grizzly bears" designates a type of bear, as does "grizzly," not a particular bear. Once you have adopted the word as a name it becomes a proper noun, of course, but it is taken from a common noun that has already been made plural.

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Memphis Grizzlies (first Vancouver Grizzlies)... of course the proper plural is "grizzly bears"

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Do not change the spelling of proper nouns, hence Grizzlys.
--English major and TA

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Bill's first instinct:
I was taught that pluralizing all forms of nouns is the same. In this context, the correct form is Grizzlies.

This is another issue though that has changed since I was little. People now want to say Grizzlys, which to me is incorrect. It seems that the rule for families -- ie, we went out with the Marleys last weekend-- is something people want to put into situations of teams and etc. I'm against it but it seems to be up for grabs.

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as far as I'm familiar with the proper nouns, you don't make any inflectional changes when making plural form.
with common nouns, as you know, y changes into ie if a consonant precedes y.
but that rule doesn't stand for proper n.

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