Possessive Noun


Possessive noun can be defined as “A noun names a person, place, thing, idea, quality or action. A possessive noun shows ownership by adding an apostrophe, an “s” or both. To make a single noun possessive, simply add an apostrophe and an ‘s’.”

How to use It in the Sentence

Possessive noun is a noun which shows ownership or possession in the sentence. Possessive nouns can be in singular or plural forms and used to show ownership in the sentence.

We can write a possessive noun in the sentence by adding an apostrophe and ‘s’ to the noun. Possessive nouns can be easily recognized in the sentence as it always comes with an apostrophe and ‘s’.

For example

  • I have to wash the car’s mat today. (in this example car’s is a possessive noun as it let us know that mat belongs to the car).
  • This is a dog’s bone that I got so deep in the ground in my garden. (in this example dog’s is a possessive noun as it let us know that bone belongs to the dog).
  • It is my father’s jacket but it fits me too. (in this example father’s is a possessive noun as it let us know that jacket belongs to the father).
  • I like lion’s mane as it looks very fluffy. (in this example lion’s is a possessive noun as it let us know that mane belongs to the lion).

All the examples above have obvious possessive nouns as they are showing their ownership to something such as mat of the car, bone of the dog, jacket of the father, and mane of the lion.

Some other examples are like:

  • Merry’s earrings are matching perfectly with her dress.
  • Lion’s cage is needed to be cleaned now.
  • I went to long drive in my brother’s car.
  • My sister’s toys have been lost right from home.
  • The cat’s bowl has been filled full with milk.
  • It is dog’s bowl filled with hotdogs.
  • I will sit on the car’s front seat.
  • The name of Barack Obama’s wife is Michele Obama.
  • I like to wear doctor’s white coat.
  • Reena’s new red car is the latest model.

Types of Possessive Noun and Basic Rules

The types of possessive noun are mentioned below with proper example:

1) Singular Possessive Noun

Singular possessive noun is a noun which shows a singular noun having ownership in the sentence. Singular possessive nouns can be made using singular nouns by adding apostrophe and ‘s’.

For example: apple’s taste, cat’s tuna, deer’s antlers, book’s cover, boss’s car, computer’s keyboard, Diane’s book, diabetes’s symptoms, goddess’s beauty, Florida’s climate, fish’s eggs, fez’s size, laundry’s smell, jam’s ingredient, house’s roof, lawyer’s fee, gym’s rules, tree’s bark, tray’s usefulness, sun’s rays, today’s newspaper, marble’s shape, month’s work, moss’s color, senator’s vote, progress’s reward, watermelon’s rind, victor’s spoils.

2) Plural Possessive Nouns

Plural possessive noun is a noun which shows a plural noun having ownership in the sentence. Plural possessive nouns can be made using plural nouns by adding only apostrophe at the end of words already having ‘s’. For example: babies’ shoes, garages’ fees, kites’ altitudes, lemons’ acidity, igloos’ construction, cabbages’ nutrition, Americans’ ideals, donors’ cards, eggs’ color, juices’ flavors, members’ votes, frogs’ croaking, inventions’ popularity, nuts’ saltiness, hampers’ conditions, owls’ eyes, planets’ orbits, Suspects’ fingerprints, the Smiths’ house, recesses’ measurements, quizzes’ difficulty, students’ grades, teachers’ qualifications, unicorns’ power, yokes’ material, violins’ melody, wagons’ circle, etc.

Some plural nouns exist without ‘s’, such plural nouns can be converted to plural possessive nouns by adding an apostrophe and ‘s’. For example: people’s ideas, women’s clothes, children’s toys, geese’s eggs, feet’s toenails, cattle’s pasture, mice’s traps, nuclei’s form, oxen’s diet, lice’s size, cacti’s thorns, octopi’s legs, die’s roll, hippopotami’s strength, fungi’s location, formulae’s indication, etc.

3) Some of the hyphenated or compound words can also be converted to possessive nouns (however only last word shows possession). Examples of singular hyphenated possessive nouns: Notre Dame’s tower, my mother-in-law’s advice, my sister-in-law’s marriage, Yellowstone National Park’s hours, t-shirt’s logo, full moon’s brightness, mid-June’s heat, middle class’s income, attorney general’s job, real estate’s decline, front-runner’s confidence, my class teacher’s book, The United States Post Office’s stamps, etc.

Examples of plural hyphenated possessive nouns: six packs’ appeal, water-bottles’ shape, post offices’ hours, bus stops’ repair, changing-rooms’ door, five-year-olds’ excitement, half-sisters’ bedrooms, ex-wives’ alimony, oil spills’ costs, u-boats’ stealth, state governments’ norms, freedom fighters’ sacrifices, etc.

4) Possessive nouns can be made by joining two nouns (two people, two places or two things) together that share common possession of an object. In this case, only second noun carry an apostrophe and ‘s’ such as Jack and Jill’s pail of water, Abbot and Costello’s comedy skit, Ram and Rahul’s school, grandmother and grandfather’s walking stick, mom and dad’s room, brother and sister’s study room, etc.

5) Sometimes two nouns joined together and make possessive noun however they show separate ownership and each noun carry an apostrophe and ‘s’ such as Shyam’s and Ram’s dressing rooms, Seeta’s and Geeta’s musics, mom’s and dad’s mobile phones, teacher’s and principal’s speeches, etc.

Exercises for You

We have provided below some exercises in order to help you to improve your knowledge about possessive noun. You need to get detail information about possessive noun provided above and check your skill by doing following exercises. Choose correct possessive nouns from following sentences and match with the given answer:

  1. This is John’s car and we are going on drive.
  2. We are completely prohibited to enter to girl’s room.
  3. We have to distribute men’s clothes among them.
  4. All the sailor’s boats are busy.
  5. I have taken Thomas’s book and will return after two days.
  6. It was John’s patience that makes him win this game.
  7. It is politician’s greediness which makes country financially empty.
  8. I have to go on James’s shop to bring some needed things.
  9. It is Smiths’s house where we have to gathered.
  10. John’s mother is really ill and needs some urgent care.
  11. Mrs. Brown’s colleague is very nice guy but he cannot come in the meeting today.
  12. John’s car is very small however attractive.
  13. John’s school is not so good.
  14. I sleep in my brother’s room.
  15. I have to complete a full day’s work.
  16. Have you saw today’s newspaper, it is very interesting?
  17. For God’s sake! Don’t do this otherwise I will get upset.
  18. He always likes to eat restaurant’s dishes.
  19. I have an appointment at dentist’s clinic at eleven o’clock.
  20. I study in Saint Mary’s girls school.
  21. Chronic illness without treatment is a death’s door.
  22. This is my grandmother’s stick which supports her while walking on the road.
  23. My mom’s kitchen always looks clean and clear.
  24. My father’s office is located so far from the home.
  25. This is my class teacher’s notes but where did you got.
  26. Do you like my sister’s painting, I have more.
  27. I went to the Agra’s Tajmahal last year but it was raining.
  28. This is my brother’s favorite dish but I will not give him.
  29. I have to come first in exam as this is the matter of my parent’s reputation.
  30. My friend’s home has big playground where we can play cricket.

Answers: 1 – John’s, 2 – girl’s, 3 – men’s, 4 – sailor’s, 5 – Thomas’s, 6 – John’s, 7 – politician’s, 8 – James’s, 9 – Smiths’s, 10 – John’s, 11 – Brown’s, 12 – John’s, 13 – John’s, 14 – brother’s, 15 – day’s, 16 – today’s, 17 – God’s, 18 – restaurant’s, 19 – dentist’s, 20 – Saint Mary’s, 21 – death’s, 22 – grandmother’s, 23 – mom’s, 24 – father’s, 25 – class teacher’s, 26 – sister’s, 27 – Agra’s, 28 – brother’s, 29 – parent’s, 30 – friend’s.

Related Topics:

Proper Noun
Common Noun
Compound Noun
Countable Noun
Uncountable Noun
Collective Noun
Concrete Noun
Abstract Noun
Singular Noun
Plural Noun

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