possessives: pronouns

 

Can you match these possessive pronouns to the right personal pronouns and possessive adjectives?
 

yours, mine, theirs, ours, hers, his, its

 

Subject Object Possessive adjectives

Possessive pronouns

I me  my  
You you  your  
He him  his  
She her  her  
It it  its  
We us  our  
They them  their  

 

We can use a possessive pronoun instead of a noun phrase:

 

Is that John’s car?   No, it’s [my car] > No, it’s mine.
Whose coat is this?   Is it [your coat]? > Is it yours?
Her coat is grey, [my coat]is brown   Her coat is grey,   mine is brown.

 

 

We can use possessive pronouns after of.

We can say:

Susan is one of my friends.
or
Susan is a friend of mine.
but not 
Susan is a friend of me

or

I am one of Susan's friends.
or
I am a friend of Susan's.
but not 
I am a friend of Susan

Exercise

Comments

Hello!

I'd like to check which of the following is correct

(A) Mary's friends promised to take Mary to the mall.
(B) Mary's friends promised to take her to the mall.

From what we know of pronouns, they are used to replace a subject that has been mentioned earlier in the sentence. Is it acceptable if the the subject's name is mentioned again?

Thank you very much!

Hello hellomisspun,

Both of these sentences are correct. If it's clear from the context that 'her' refers to Mary, sentence B would be much more likely, but sentence A is not incorrect. Sentence A would be more likely when you want to be very clear about who they were taking to the mall.

Best wishes,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello sir ,
I had this question in an exam and I doubt my answer . Here is the question :
Jane always asks my sister and ......... for advice .
A) her
B) hers

I went with the second choice ..

Hello Zahra,

I'm afraid that B is not correct. What is needed in this gap is some kind of object pronoun, such as 'her'.

Best regards,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello Sir,
It is stated above that "I am a friend of Susan's" is correct sentence. Could you please explain how the meaning is changed when we use just 'Susan' instead of 'Susan's' in that sentence?

Hello Advertgrwl,

Saying 'I am a friend of Susan' is not correct in standard English - it's simply something native speakers don't say.

It might help to think of 'I'm a friend of Susan's' as a shorter way of saying 'I'm a friend of Susan's many friends'.

Best wishes,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello everybody :),

I would like to ask you about the "double possessive" that is when two possessives (a determiner/demonstrative + a possessive pronuon) refer to the same noun as in:
That friend of yours.
That idea of Bob's.

I've been told that this construction could be often used with a derogatory meaning. Is that true? And if so, how do we distinguish the pejorative note in those phrases? Through the context/the speaker's voice?

And, on the same topic, I've read that there is a nuance in meaning between, for example:
1) What promise is it of yours? And
2) What is this promise of yours?

The first being some sort of rhetorical question meaning "what ever/on earth is this promise you've made"?, while the second is a more direct question meaning "what have you promised"? "what promise have you made"?
Is it correct or perhaps is it the other way round?

I'd really appreciate your answering my questions.

Thanks a lot in advance.

Hi Knightrider,

I can't think of any special use of the double possessive with a derogatory meaning. Depending on the intonation, it certainly could be used to communicate this, but as far as I can think, it doesn't have anything to do with the double possessive structure itself.

Similarly, 'what promise is it of yours?' sounds quite odd, even non-standard, to me. Perhaps if I saw it in context it would sound more natural to me. The second question there is grammatically correct and means what you indicate in your last full paragraph.

I hope this helps you.

Best wishes,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hi Kirk,

Thank you very much for clearing up my doubts. Now I've got a better understanding of this structure.
With regard to the first question your reply is exactly what I needed to know. As for the second question there is not a real context. It's just a highlighted section in a grammar book of mine illustrating the difference I've quoted. Both my questions arose after reading about the double possessive in two different grammar books of mine. Both authors are Italian scholars so when you say that that example souds odd and even non-standard I think it depends on the fact that neither is a native speaker of English although, I should imagine, they ought to know what they're talking (and writing) about, oughtn't they?

Thanks again and
All the best.

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