Lesson Topics

Possessive Adjectives

Notes:

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Possessive adjectives are used to show ownership.

mi libro
my book

tu pluma
your pen



There are five possessive adjectives.

mi
tu
su

nuestro
vuestro



Three possessive adjectives (mi, tu, su) have only two forms, singular and plural.

mi
mis

tu
tus

su
sus



Possessive adjectives agree with the nouns they modify. That is, they agree with the thing possessed, not the possessor.

mi libro
my book
mis libros
my books
tu pluma
your pen
tus plumas
your pens


Mi, tu and su do not have masculine and feminine forms. They stay the same, regardless of the gender of the nouns they modify.

mi amigo
mi amiga

tus hermanos
tus hermanas

su libro
sus plumas



Mi means "my" ; tu means "your."

Mi casa es tu casa.
My house is your house.



Su, like tu, can mean "your." The difference between your (tu) and your (su) lies in the degree of formality the speaker wishes to convey.

Mi casa es tu casa.
(speaking to someone you would address as "tú")

Mi casa es su casa.
(speaking to someone you would address as "usted")

Note: The two words "tu" and "tú" are pronounced the same. Tú (with the written accent) is the subject pronoun meaning "you" (informal). Tu (without the written accent) is the possessive adjective meaning "your" (informal).



Su has four meanings: his, her, their and your (formal).

María busca a su hermana.
María is looking for her sister.

Juan busca a su hermana.
Juan is looking for his sister.

Ellos buscan a su hermana.
They are looking for their sister.

Su madre busca a su hermana.
Your mother is looking for your sister.



If the meaning of su is not clear from the context of the sentence, a prepositional phrase is used in place of su.

María busca a la hermana de él.
María looks for his sister.

El hombre busca las llaves de ella.
The man looks for her keys.

María busca el cuaderno de Juan.
María looks for Juan's notebook.

El hombre busca las llaves de Samanta.
The man looks for Samanta's keys.



Two possessive adjectives (nuestro and vuestro) have four forms.

nuestro
nuestra
nuestros
nuestras

vuestro
vuestra
vuestros
vuestras



Nuestro means "our."

nuestro hermano
our brother
nuestra hermana
our sister
nuestros hermanos
our brothers
nuestras hermanas
our sisters


Vuestro means "your" (familiar, plural). Like vosotros, vuestro is primarily used in Spain.

vuestro libro
your book
vuestra pluma
your pen
vuestros libros
your books
vuestras plumas
your pens


Here are all of the possessive adjectives:

mi(s)
my

tu(s)
your (fam. sing.)

su(s)
his, her, your (formal), their

nuestro(-a, -os, -as)
our

vuestro(-a, -os, -as)
your (fam. pl.)



Note that these possessive adjectives are not used with articles of clothing or body parts. Rather, the definite article is used.

Me gusta el vestido nuevo.
I like my new dress

Me duele el brazo.
My arm hurts.

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