1. Overview
  2. Usage
  3. Difference Between Possessive Adjectives and Pronouns

Possessive pronouns and possessive adjectives, also known as possessive determiners, indicate possession or belonging in English grammar. However, there is a significant difference in the way they're used.



My name is Alice, what is yours?

My is a possessive adjective, yours is a possessive pronoun.


Before moving to their usage, let's have a look at the overview of all possessive pronouns and adjectives in singular and plural.

PersonPossessive AdjectivePossessive Pronoun
I my mine
you your yours
he / she / it his / her / its his / hers / its
we our ours
they their theirs


Rule 1: We use possessive adjectives in front of the nouns (the thing being possessed) to indicate possession or belonging.



Did you see my gloves?

My is a possessive adjective placed before the noun gloves to indicate its belonging to the first person singular, i.e., me.

Rule 2: We use possessive pronouns to replace previously mentioned nouns (the thing being possessed). As possessive pronouns are used alone, they are usually placed in the end of a sentence.



My mother got a new scarf, it looks a lot like yours.

Yours is a possessive pronoun used to replace the noun scarf mentioned earlier in the sentence.

Difference Between Possessive Adjectives and Pronouns

The main difference between possessive adjectives and pronouns is that possessive adjectives accompany a noun that names the thing being possessed, while possessive pronouns replace it.



My dog is 5 years old. How old is yours?

My is a possessive adjective that accompanies and shows possession of the noun dog; yours is a possessive pronoun that replaces the previously mentioned noun dog.



Choose the correct word to indicate possessiveness. Have you seen ___ (she) new dress?


correct answers.