Men go mad in herds, and recover one by one

Possessive Determiners

my, your, his, her, its, our, their

We use possessive determiners to show who owns or "possesses" something. The possessive determiners are:

  • my, your, his, her, its, our, their
Warning! These are determiners. Don't confuse them with possessive pronouns.

Like all determiners, possessive determiners come at the beginning of a noun phrase, so they come in front of any adjective(s).

Look at these example sentences:

possessive determiner with gender (Male, Female, Neuter) example sentence
my M/F This is my book.
his M His name is John.
her F Her first name is Mary.
its N The dog licked its wounded paw.
our M/F We have sold our house.
their M/F/N The students thanked their Thai teacher.
your M/F I like your hair.
Your two children are lovely.
Be careful with these three possessive determiners:
possessive determiner contraction (sounds the same)
1. your:
This is your book.
you're (you are):
Hurry up! You're late!
2. its:
The dog licked its paw.
it's (it is/it has):
It's coming. (It is coming...)
It's arrived. (It has arrived...)
3. their:
Which is their house?
they're (they are):
They're waiting. (They are waiting...)

Also note there as an adverb:
I'm not going there.

Be careful! There is NO apostrophe (') in the possessive determiner its. We use an apostrophe to write the contraction of "it is" or "it has". For example:
it is raining → it's raining
it has finished → it's finished

I'm taking my dog to the vet. It's broken its leg.

Nobody has the right to obey.'