Possessive Adjectives English

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Looking to learn about possessive adjectives in English? In this reference, we will discuss what a possessive adjective is, its role in sentences, and when it should be used. We will also look at a full list of possessive adjectives and provide examples of proper grammar.

What is a possessive adjective?

Possessive adjective definition: “adjective that modifies a noun to show possession or ownership”. It is usually placed before a noun in a sentence to denote that the noun belongs to someone or something. For example, in the sentence “My cat is sleeping,” the possessive adjective “my” is used to show that the cat belongs to the speaker.

Possessive adjectives can also be used to indicate a relationship between two people. For example, in the sentence “John’s mother is a teacher,” the possessive adjective “John’s” is used to show that the mother belongs to John.

Learners often confuse possessive adjectives with possessive pronouns. There is a difference between them. Possessive pronouns do not need to be followed by a noun, whereas possessive adjectives must be followed by a noun. For example, in the sentence “That car is mine,” the possessive pronoun “mine” is used to show ownership of the car without needing to be followed by a noun.

Possessive adjectives are also sometimes referred to as possessive determiners. This is because they are used to indicate the relationship between a noun and the speaker or writer.

Full list of possessive adjectives

Here is a full list of possessive adjectives in English:

  • My
  • Your
  • His
  • Her
  • Its
  • Our
  • Their
  • Whose

Possessive adjectives examples in sentences

Here are some examples of possessive adjectives in sentences:

  • My cat is sleeping.
  • Your dog is barking.
  • His car is blue.
  • Her house is big.
  • Its tail is fluffy.
  • Our house is small.
  • Their books are new.
  • Whose pen is this?

Possessive adjectives in grammar

Possessive adjectives are usually placed before a noun in a sentence. However, they can also be used at the end of a sentence, depending on the context. For example, in the sentence “This is my cat,” the possessive adjective “my” is placed before the noun, whereas in the sentence “This cat is mine,” the possessive adjective “mine” is placed at the end of the sentence.

Possessive adjectives can also be used with gerunds (verbs ending in -ing). For example, in the sentence “John’s running is fast,” the possessive adjective “John’s” is used to indicate that the running belongs to John.

As another example, in the sentence “I’m enjoying my vacation,” the possessive adjective “my” is used to indicate that the vacation belongs to me.

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Apostrophe with possessive adjectives

When using a possessive adjective with a noun, an apostrophe is usually added to the end of the word. For example, in the sentence “This is my cat’s bed,” the possessive adjective “my” is followed by an apostrophe and the noun “cat’s.”

10 possessive adjectives examples with an apostrophe:

  1. His - His car’s engine
  2. Her - Her dog’s leash
  3. Its - Its tail’s fur
  4. Our - Our house’s roof
  5. Your - Your cat’s bed
  6. Their - Their baby’s crib
  7. Yours - Yours and mine’s lunch
  8. Mine - Mine and yours’ dinner
  9. Ours - Ours and theirs' picnic
  10. Whose - Whose cat's collar

Remember that the possessive adjective "its" does not take an apostrophe. In the sentence “This is its bed,” the possessive adjective “its” is used without an apostrophe.

"Its" or "it's" is a  common mistake when using possessive adjectives. "It's" is the contraction of “it is” and should not be used in place of the possessive adjective "its".

Possessive Adjectives English

Summary

Possessive adjectives are a type of pronoun used to show possession or ownership. They are usually placed before a noun in a sentence to show that the noun belongs to someone or something. Possessive adjectives can also be used to indicate a relationship between two people. They can also be used with gerunds to indicate possession.

If you’re interested in learning more about English grammar, be sure to see more handy references below!

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Comments

PromovaNov 23rd, 2023
Possessive adjectives and possessive pronouns both indicate possession or ownership, but they differ in their usage in a sentence. Possessive adjectives, such as "my," "your," "his," "her," "its," "our," and "their," are placed before a noun to indicate that the noun belongs to someone or something. For instance, in the sentence, "His book is on the table," the possessive adjective "his" indicates ownership of the book by someone.
Catherine LoganNov 23rd, 2023
What distinguishes possessive adjectives from possessive pronouns in English grammar, and how are they used differently in sentences?