“Their mixing up they’re theres.”
I included this chapter at the request of my son. He says that everyone in his company confuses these three words. So I wrote the chapter and emailed it to him, and he forwarded it to colleagues. Problem solved. I hope.
There, Their, They’re: An Overview
Note: If you haven't read the eBook Understanding the Parts of Speech or studied Grammar.com's section on the Parts of Speech, then you haven’t met Amber and Igor, the primitive characters I dreamed up. They, along with my eighth-grade English teacher, my dear Miss Hamrick, concocted our language 6,412 years ago. Here they are again.
Amber and Igor
After gathering wild hickory nuts one hot afternoon, Amber and Igor sat beneath a shade tree and gossiped about the tribe.
“Where did the Jones family go for vacation?” Igor asked.
“Southern France,” Amber answered.
“They’re in France? At this time of year?” Igor wondered.
“They like the beaches, I think,” Amber explained.
“Why don’t we ever go there?” Igor asked.
“I don’t think our children are old enough just yet.” Ambe rpointed out.
“But the Joneses took their children, didn’t they?” Igor asked, scratching his hairy toes.
“Yep, they’re there with theirs,” Amber said, summing it all up succinctly.
. . . .
There, Their, and They’re
Some very smart people make this mistake.
They’re mixing up their theres.