This possessives page brings together information about

  • possessive nouns
  • possessive adjectives
  • possessive pronouns
  • questions
  • reciprocal pronouns  

 

Section: 

Comments

hi
i am confuse on this topic

Hello pintu94,

If you follow the links to the different pages in this section, you'll see explanations. If you have any specific questions about what you see on any of those pages, please feel free to ask us there.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hi, i'm quite confuse on this topic with the following reason, why we add s to some nouns to show the possesive while other nouns not, for example : Mark's car but Car door, Kathy's pen but pen writers. Would anybody explain it for me? Thank a lot.

Hi Thuong123,

When we want to show possession we add 's to the noun, as you say. The examples where there is no 's are different. In these the first word is not a noun, but an adjective. It can be confusing because the words have the same form:

This is my car ['car' is a noun]

My car door is scratched ['car' is an adjective describing the noun 'door']

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hi Peter,
Thanks for a reply. Can you please give me a clue how to distinguish whether nouns are adjectives or not? Thank you.

Hi Thuobg123,

I'm afraid the only answer is to recognise the function of the word from the context and from knowing common use; there is no rule which allows you to tell an adjective from a noun purely by its spelling.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello
Which of the following phrases is correct?
body of the animals
bodies of the animals

Thanks

Hello naghmairam,

The first phrase is not correct as more than one animal does not share a body.

The second phrase may be correct, depending on the context. A definite article before 'bodies' seems likely, though this will depend on the context.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hi Peter,
Thank you for explanation,however in my mind has appeared 1 confusion.For example, in the forest, all the TREES' branches were waving in the wind. In the context the author used (TREES') but why? If we say A CAR DOOR, so why we can't use TREE BRANCHES in this case?
Thanks again for your attention.

Hi Thuong,

You can say tree branches, where tree functions as an adjective in the noun phrase. Depending on how many trees you are describing you can also say the branches of the tree, the tree's branchesthe branches of the trees or the trees' branches.

I'm not sure why you think you can't use the phrase, to be honest.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Pages