John’s or Johns’ or Johns?

The word John’s is the singular possessive. E.g., “That is John’s wife, Mary.” Also, the word Johns is the standard plural version for referring to multiple Johns. E.g., “There are four Johns in this office.” In addition, Johns’ is the plural possessive. E.g., “The Johns’ house is next to ours.”

John is among the most common names in many parts of the world. Therefore, understanding the different forms is helpful because you will come across them regularly.

The following chart shows the different forms the name John can take.

Singular possessiveJohn’s
Plural possessiveJohns’

Now, here are some sentences that show each form in context.

  • Singular: My friend John is coming over to my house later.
  • Plural: Both the Johns in my class are nice guys.
  • Singular possessive: John’s house is quite far from the office.
  • Plural possessive: The Johns’ car was stolen from outside their house last night.

Furthermore, the plural possessive can indicate something owned by two people with the first name John. However, it can also refer to a family with the surname John, as in the above example.

We have explained the basics of using the possessive forms of the word John. However, to make sure that you never make a mistake again when using John, keep reading the rest of the article, where we explain more about each term.


The word John’s is the singular possessive form of the name John. Therefore, you should use it to say that something belongs to one person named John.

You can use this form to refer to physical items.

  • John’s car needs a service.

In addition, you can use it to refer to non-physical things.

  • It’s John’s birthday tonight, so we are going out for sushi.
  • Please give me John’s email address so I can thank him personally.


The word Johns’ is the plural possessive version of the name John. Consequently, you can use it to refer to something that two or more Johns possess.

  • Both Johns’ results in the exam were disappointing.

Although the above example is correct, using the plural possessive is uncommon to refer to things possessed by two people with the first name John.

However, since John is also a common surname, using it in a plural context to refer to different members of a John family is more common.

  • The Johns’ house is more extensive than ours.


The term Johns is the standard plural version of the name John. You should use it to refer to two or more people called John, as long as the sentence is not possessive.

  • We have three Johns at work, and I always get them confused.

However, like the plural possessive, it is not common to use names in the plural sense.

Consequently, people often phrase things a little differently. As shown in this example:

  • There are three people called John at my workplace.