Originally posted by melgross
That's very good, but you need the actual dictionary.
I don't have it. I was really hoping you could quote any
relevant information from the actual dictionary.
It just isn't used much any more, so you won't find it where there are space limitations, or in a web definition which is giving commonly accepted definitions.
It's like the word regardless. That's accepted. Irregardless is used as well. It isn't wrong. But it's isn't preferred. Many dictionaries won't have it. Some do, and they say to use respective.
Actually, the Merriam Webster Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition says of the word irregardless:
Main Entry: ir·re·gard·less
Etymology: probably blend of irrespective and regardless
Date: circa 1912
nonstandard : REGARDLESS
usage Irregardless originated in dialectal American speech in the early 20th century. Its fairly widespread use in speech called it to the attention of usage commentators as early as 1927. The most frequently repeated remark about it is that "there is no such word." There is such a word, however. It is still used primarily in speech, although it can be found from time to time in edited prose. Its reputation has not risen over the years, and it is still a long way from general acceptance. Use regardless instead.
The same source, which contains exhaustive usage notes on all such confusing words, is adamant about it's/its.
You haven't provided one bit of evidence that it's
is a viable spelling of the possessive form of "it". Claiming that it's not modern is one thing, but claiming that old/middle English usage makes it okay is not valid. Those are fundamentally different languages than English. The English of 200 years ago isn't modern, but it's still the same English language we speak today. Old and Middle English are not. However, I haven't seen any evidence that "it's" was considered valid as a possessive pronoun 200 years ago either.
You also started this whole thread with this sentence:
I argue with some editors about the its it's its' thing as well. The " ' " implies possesive. Most times there's no problem with using the " ' ", but some editors think that it isn't "modern".
That shows a complete ignorance of the topic. First of all, its'
is never okay. And this isn't an editorial option... I dare you to find one legitimate editor who would allow "it's" as a possessive. And yes, the apostrophe implies possessive for nouns, but, as discussed ad nauseum, not for pronouns. Which is where your confusion (and many others') comes from. [and yes, others'
is correct. The possessive of the plural noun others
-- many others' confusion
-- although I would gladly debate the use of confusion vs. confusions in this example]