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Practice with the exercises:
Exercise 1

1. Possessive pronouns

Possessive pronouns are a type of pronoun (a word that replaces a noun) that indicate possession, that is, they tell us who something belongs to.
This jacket is mine.
Is this kite yours?

2. Which possessive pronoun should we use?

To use a possessive pronoun we will have as a reference the personal pronoun to which the possessor corresponds.

Personal pronoun Possessive pronoun Examples
I Mine   This computer is mine.
You Yours   The sandwiches are yours.
He His   The camera is his.
She Hers All these shoes are hers.
It Its1 These toys are its.
We Ours   These pictures are ours.
You Yours   Is this car yours?
They Theirs   The present is theirs.

1The pronoun its is rarely used.

3. Characteristics of possessive pronouns

  • Possessive pronouns vary according to the possessor and not according to the possession:
    Mary-jo has a dog. The dog is hers.
    In this example, the owner of the dog (possessor) is a girl, so the corresponding possessive pronoun is hers.
    Peter has a cat. The cat is his.
    In this example, the owner of the cat (possessor) is a boy, so the corresponding possessive pronoun is his.
  • Possessive pronouns do not precede a noun:
    I have a pencil. This is my pencil.
    In this example we use a possessive adjective (my) because it precedes a noun (pencil).
    I have a pen. This pen is mine.
    Yo tengo un boli. Este boli es mio.
    In this example we use a possessive pronoun (mine) because it doesn't precede a noun.
  • Possessive pronouns are used as the subject of a sentence to avoid unnecessary repeating of information:
    This is my book. Yours is there.
    In this example, yours replaces your book, whicn makes the sentence shorter and allows us not to repeat information we already know.
    I like this car, but theirs is amazing.
    In this example, theirs replaces their car.

To designate one or more people from a group, we can use the following structure:

Subject + of + possessive pronoun
A friend of hers is a dentist.
Some pupils of mine were ill yesterday.

In English we never put an article before a possessive pronoun:

This is not my jacket. The Mine is black.
These are my toys. The Yours are in the box.

Remember!

 

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