A: Whose phone is this?
B: It isn't mine.
Possessive adjectives are not pronouns, but they are important to learn before studying Possessive Pronouns below. Possessive Adjectives are used before nouns to identify the owner of something:
- my + noun
- your + noun
- his + noun
- her + noun
- its + noun
- our + noun
- their + noun
What is your name?
Jeff gave me his phone number.
I can't use my computer because its keyboard is broken.
Our classroom isn't very big.
Of & 's
Possessive adjectives are similar to using 's with nouns to show possession:
- Jeff's phone number = his phone number
- My computer's keyboard = its keyboard
- Jennifer's apartment = her apartment
- Steve and Pat's teacher = their teacher
We can also show possession with of:
- The door of the classroom is open.
- The classroom's door is open.
- The flag of Canada is red and white.
- Canada's flag is red and white.
- The price of the shirt is $30.
- The shirt's price is $30.
Using of to show possession is not common when talking about people:
The brother of Jennifer is nice.
- Jennifer's brother is nice.
The house of Phil and Margaret is big.
- Phil and Margaret's house is big.
The cat of Samantha is cute.
- Samantha's cat is cute.
Possessive pronouns have the same meaning as a possessive adjective + noun:
- my + noun = mine
- your + noun = yours
- his + noun = his
- her + noun = hers
- our + noun = ours
- their + noun = theirs
- This is not your phone. It is mine. (my phone)
- I don't have a pencil. May I borrow yours? (your pencil)
- Jenny ate my dinner, and I ate hers. (her dinner)
Be careful! "His" is a possessive adjective, but it is also a possessive pronoun. This means "his" can be used with or without a noun:
Where's Paul? This is his jacket.
Where's Paul? This is his.
Notice the differences between subject pronouns, object pronouns, and possessive adjectives:
|Subject Pronouns||Object Pronouns||Possessive Adjectives||Possessive Pronouns|
Whose is used to ask about possession. It can be used with or without nouns:
Whose / Whose car is that?
(Is it your car? Is it Jeff's car? Is it Michelle's car?)
- It's Jeff's.
Whose / Whose money is this?
Is it my money (mine)? Is it your money (yours)?
- It is mine.
Open the exercise to begin the activity. Follow the instructions in the document.