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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


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?



sir , i have query related to possessive adjective

1. I have completed my graduation .
2. I have completed graduation
which one is correct ?
should we always use possessive adj before objective noun.

3. i am coming directly /to my office /from the station/no error.
which part has error ,please explain with detail explanation.

Hello dhayalsomednra09,

Not every objective noun has a possessive adjective before it. If you read through an article in our Magazine, for example, you'll get a sense for this. You could say either sentence 1 or 2, but to be honest I'd probably just say 'I have graduated' or 'I graduated'.

In number 3 I think you're supposed to choose one of the answers after 'I am coming directly'. Which one do you think it is? It's better if you tell us what you think the answer is and explain to us what you understand or don't understand. That way you have to think about it a bit and we can see how you understand things. In the end, you will learn more that way.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

I have some questions about this grammar points. I hope you can explain to me.
1. If the sentence is "Where is my pillow?" and I am asked to change it into the plural form, can I write "Where are our pillows?"?
2. Can I change the sentence "Their shelves are clean." into the singular form like "Her/his shelf is clean."?
3. For a sentence like "I have to put a pizza on my table.", can I just change it into "We have to put pizzas on our table" instead of "our tables"?

I do look forward to hearing from you.

Many thanks.

Hello Joowon,

Yes, you could rewrite sentence 1 like that. You could perhaps also say 'my pillows'. Both are grammatically correct. Your versions of 2 and 3 are also correct. You could say 'our table' or 'our tables' -- it depends on what you mean, but both are grammatically correct.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

Dear Sir.
Why we can not use 'his' instead of 'its' in below sentence .
The dog wagged its tail when it saw the postman

Hello Hammad Ahmed Shah,

You could use 'his' in this case if it is a male dog and particularly if it is one that you know or feel some kind of affection for.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

hi !

is this an example of possessive adjective? "the baby´s ill."

Hello mgfielrocha,

No, the 's in the baby's ill is a contraction. A contraction is a shorter form of one or two words. In this case, 's is a contraction of is, so the sentence without a contraction would be the baby is ill.

By the way, there is a useful list of the most common contractions in English in the Cambridge Dictionary.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello. Kindly, when you have a possessive adjective with a list of objects it possesses, do you attend the possessive adjective with only the first object it possesses in the list; or kindly, do you attend it with each object it possesses in the list, e.g. Kindly, those are my brown, my black and my white wallets or Kindly, those are my brown, black and white wallets? Kindly, please advise. Thank you. - Matthew

Hello Matthewandannmarie,

The possessive adjective does not need to be repeated. Normally we would therefore say:

These are my brown, black and white wallets.

If for some reason it was important to emphasise that each is 'my' and not, for example, 'her' wallet then you might repeat the possessive adjective, but this would be unusual.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team