When we want to show that something belongs to somebody or something, we can use possessives:
|I||my||My name is Sandra.|
|you||your||Your new haircut looks great!|
|he||his||He broke his leg.|
|she||her||She sold her computer.|
|it||its||My car is old, so its engine isn’t very powerful.|
|we||our||Our apartment is on the fourth floor.|
|they||their||Candace and Marty named their baby girl Donna.|
|Mary||Mary’s||Mary’s phone number is 555-4321.|
|Joe||Joe’s||Joe’s favorite color is green.|
|the boy||the boy’s||The boy’s clothes are dirty.|
|parents||parents’||My parents’ names are Patrick and Gloria.|
|cat||cat’s||My cat’s name is Ginger.|
|country||country’s||My country’s flag is red, white, and blue.|
As you can see from its, cat’s, and country’s, it is not necessary to be a person in order to use a possessive. Here are more examples of using possessives with things:
- Today’s meeting will be at 1 PM.
- This website’s goal is to teach English.
= The goal of this website is to teach English.
- Who do you think this year’s skating champion will be?
Don’t confuse its (possessive) with it’s (contraction for “it is”)!
The cat ate it’s food
The cat ate its food.
Its illegal for a 17-year-old to buy alcohol.
It’s illegal for a 17-year-old to buy alcohol.
Test your understanding of possessives in English with this quiz!
"No. __________ prices are too high."
"I'm not sure, but I think she likes rock music."