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Possessive Pronouns: What is a Possessive Pronoun? Useful Examples

Possessive Pronouns: What is a Possessive Pronoun? Useful Examples

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Possessive pronouns are a key part of English grammar, allowing us to express ownership and relation to various subjects and objects. When we use possessive pronouns, we eliminate the need for repetition, streamlining our speech and writing. They are simple in their usage but vital for clear and concise communication. By understanding and applying the rules of possessive pronouns, we can navigate social and professional situations with greater linguistic precision.

Fundamentals of Possessive Pronouns

Possessive Pronouns: What is a Possessive Pronoun? Useful Examples

What is a Possessive Pronoun?

Possessive pronouns are words used to indicate that something belongs to someone or has a direct relationship with someone else.

Possessive pronouns are:

  • Mine
  • Yours (singular)
  • Hers
  • His
  • Ours
  • Theirs
  • Yours (plural)

Function of Possessive Pronoun

Possessive pronouns serve to replace nouns and indicate possession, preventing unnecessary repetition. For example:

  • Without a possessive pronoun: Is this Sarah’s book? Yes, that book is Sarah’s.
  • With a possessive pronoun: Is this Sarah’s book? Yes, it is hers.

These pronouns may stand alone and do not precede a noun, differing from possessive adjectives (my, your, his, her, its, our, their), which do precede a noun, like in “my book” or “our house.”

Possessive Pronouns Examples

First-Person Possessive Pronouns

The first-person possessive pronouns are “mine” and “ours.” “Mine” is used when referring to something that belongs to the speaker alone, while “ours” reflects something belonging to a group including the speaker.

  • Singular: The book is mine.
  • Plural: The house is ours.

This is my car, not your car.

=> This car is mine, not yours.

Examples with possessive pronoun – Mine:

  • This car is mine.
  • His ideas do not square with mine.
  • Her right hand is inches from mine.
  • Her parents were far more liberal than mine.
  • Hi, Joe. I’d like you to meet a friend of mine.
  • Sending you a kiss to say I’m glad that you are mine. Happy the day!
  • Better is the neighbor’s hen than mine.
  • He is not a friend of mine, only an acquaintance.

Examples with possessive pronoun – Ours:

  • It is interesting to compare their situation and ours.
  • He lived in a gentler age than ours.
  • Your dormitory is no better than ours.
  • She became a lifelong friend of ours.
  • He summed up the way of ours in a few words.
  • We were left with the impression that the contract was ours if we wanted it.

Second-Person Possessive Pronouns

The second-person possessive pronouns are “yours.” It can refer to one person (singular) or many persons (plural) that the speaker is talking to.

  • Singular and Plural: Is that book yours?


  • You roll my log and I’ll roll yours.
  •  Is she a friend of yours?
  • Is Bob an old friend of yours?
  • Wishing you and yours a happy new year.
  • You probably picked up my keys instead of yours.
  • Our house is not comparable with yours.
  • She just bought a new car just like yours.

Third-Person Possessive Pronouns

In the third person, possessive pronouns include “his,” “hers,” “its,” and “theirs.” They refer to something belonging to he, she, it, and they, respectively.

  • Masculine: The decision was his.
  • Feminine: The choice was hers.
  • Neuter: The cat ate its food (Note: “its” here is a possessive determiner).
  • Plural: The victory is theirs.

Examples with possessive pronoun – His:

  • This is my brother ‘s book. It’s his.
  • Is she a friend of his?
  • You probably picked up my keys instead of his.
  • This is our room, and his is just across the hall.

Examples with possessive pronoun – Hers:

  • That skirt of hers is positively indecent.
  • I dovetailed my work arrangements with hers.
  •  Your account of events corresponds with hers.
  •  Your account of events does not correspond with hers.
  • He entwined his fingers with hers and looked into her eyes.

Examples with possessive pronoun – Theirs:

  • How can we match our generosity against theirs?
  • Our problems pale into insignificance when compared to theirs.
  • His view eventually prevailed over theirs.
  • They looked at our pictures, but they didn’t show us theirs.
  • When our washing machine broke, our neighbors let us use theirs.
  • We’ve kept our end of the deal – let’s see if they keep theirs.
  • Other marriages might go stale , but not theirs.
  • We built a new house up against theirs.

Applying Possessive Pronouns

In Sentences

We replace nouns with possessive pronouns to show who owns something. Here’s a straightforward approach:

  • Incorrect: Lisa’s jacket is next to Lisa’s bag.
  • Correct: Lisa’s jacket is next to hers.

We keep sentences succinct and avoid redundancy by using the appropriate pronouns.

In Questions

When asking about ownership, we substitute nouns with possessive pronouns:

  • Is this David’s book? (Without pronoun)
  • Is this book his? (With pronoun)

By doing so, we create more natural-sounding questions.

With Gerunds

Using possessive pronouns with gerunds is a formal way to indicate the doer of the action:

  • We were impressed by Jane singing. (Less formal)
  • We were impressed by Jane’s singing. (More formal)

We ensure the sentence reflects the correct subject performing the gerund action.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you differentiate between possessive pronouns and possessive adjectives with examples?

Possessive pronouns replace nouns to indicate ownership, like “mine,” “yours,” or “theirs,” while possessive adjectives modify nouns, like “my,” “your,” or “their.” For example, “The book is mine,” uses a possessive pronoun, but “My book is on the table,” uses a possessive adjective.

Can you provide 10 examples of sentences using possessive pronouns?

  1. The guitar is hers.
  2. This house is ours.
  3. The responsibility is yours.
  4. The decision was theirs.
  5. Is that car yours?
  6. This idea is mine.
  7. The victory was ours.
  8. The choice is yours to make.
  9. The fault is his.
  10. The dog is theirs.

What are possessive adjectives and can you give 10 examples of how they are used?

Possessive adjectives are words that describe to whom a thing belongs. Here are 10 examples:

  1. Her scarf is red.
  2. Your book is on the desk.
  3. Our project won the award.
  4. His answer was correct.
  5. Their house is huge.
  6. My phone is charging.
  7. Her coat is in the closet.
  8. Your keys are on the table.
  9. Our friends will join us later.
  10. Their opinions were considered.

Where can I find engaging activities or worksheets to practice possessive pronouns?

To practice possessive pronouns, you can find worksheets and activities on educational websites or through language learning apps. Websites like and Teachers Pay Teachers offer a variety of resources designed to help reinforce these concepts in a fun and interactive way.