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5. My, your, etc, and mine, yours, etc.


1 Introduction

Mark: Why have you brought your work home? We're going out.
Sarah: I'll do it later. Let's go now. Shall we take my car?
Mark: Well, I'd rather not take mine. I think there's something wrong with it.

My, mine, your, etc. express possession and similar meanings. My car means the car belonging to me; your work means the work you are doing. My comes before a noun, e.g. my car. We use mine on its own.

2 Its and it's

We use its before a noun to express the idea of belonging.
The street is around here somewhere, but I've forgotten its name.
It's is a short form of it is or it has.
I think it's time to go. (= it is)
It's got a lot colder today, hasn't it? (= it has)

3 My, your with parts of the body and clothes

We normally use my, your, etc. with parts of the body and with someone's clothes.
Emma shook her head sadly. NOT Emma shook the head sadly.
Someone came up behind me and grabbed my arm.
You must take off your shoes before you enter a mosque.
But we usually use the in the following structure with a prepositional phrase.

4 Own

We use own after my, your, etc. to say that something belongs to us and to no one else.
Rachel has got her own calculator. She doesn't borrow mine. NOT an own calculator
I don't share any more. I've got a flat of my own. NOT of mine own

5 A friend of mine

Look at these examples.
Tom is a friend of mine. (= one of my friends) NOT a friend of me
Rachel came to the party with a cousin of hers. (= one of her cousins)
I borrowed some magazines of yours. (= some of your magazines)
Note also 's in this example: Rita is a friend of Melanie's.

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