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Possessives: adjectives

Level: beginner

Subject Object Possessive adjective
I me my 
you you your
he him his
she her her
it it its
we us our
they them their

We use possessive adjectives:

  • to show something belongs to somebody:

That's our house.
My car is very old.

  • for relations and friends:

My mother is a doctor.
How old is your sister?

  • for parts of the body:

He's broken his arm.
She's washing her hair.
I need to clean my teeth.

Possessives: adjectives

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Be careful!

The possessive adjective its does not have an apostrophe ('):

That bird has broken its (NOT it's) wing.

(it's always means it is or it has.)

its or it's?

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Comments

Hello,

What is the principal difference between Possessive adjectives and possessive pronouns?

"This house is mine."

Why can't we call "mine" as predicative adjective here as it is followed by verb (is)

Hello amol,

That's a great question and is very observant of you! There is some debate among linguists on how to classify these words (see this Wikipedia article for a little more about this), but that's an area we don't get involved in here, where our main purpose is to help people learn to use English rather than classify it. I'd recommend you remember what you've noticed and take the idea that 'mine' is a pronoun with a grain of salt - it's useful in many contexts, but not all.

I hope that sounds all right to you. Please let us know if you have any other questions.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Something wrong with this exercise: I answer with correct adjectives, but they seem all wrong (they are all red), when I check with "show answers" , they are correct !!

Hello maridewa,

That's very strange! I just did the exercise myself, and it was working correctly. Are you putting extra spaces or using capital letters? I'm afraid I don't know what could be causing this and it's difficult for me to ask our technical team about it if I cannot reproduce the error. Does the same thing happen when you do similar exercises on other pages? For example, our comparative adjectives page?

Sorry about this!

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

I am very anxious with this task and question. So, I do, but I still have mistake. I try again and the result is good. Thank you

Sorry, I didn't understand that it was a task, not rule.

I'm sorry, may be I'm too silly, but look at your table
He-his
It-it?

Hi BC,

The Q3 says: The dog wagged _____ tall when it saw the postman.
I answered: his, but the cirrect answer is: its. Could please explain me why?
Thanks

Hello again reyeslina,

In theory, 'his', 'her' or 'its' could also be used to refer to a dog. People tend to use 'its' when they don't know the dog or don't care about it; when they do know the dog, they usually use the appropriate form ('his' or 'her') according to its gender.

In this case, the second part of the sentence ('... when it saw the postman') indicates that the speaker doesn't know this dog, so 'it's' is the only correct answer.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Sir, as we know that adjective is tell you more about the noun. So in the above example [My car is very old.] can we consider Old as an adjective? (or Very Old as an adjective).
My is a Possessive Adjective.

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