Pronoun Types 15
Possessive pronouns are used to show that something belongs to someone:
Dit is een foto van mijn huis.
This is a photo of my house.
The possessive relationship can extend to people:
Mijn naam is Hanna van Vliet. Ik ben jouw mentor.
My name is Hanna van Vliet. I am your mentor.
Note that possessive constructions with proper names also exist.
Here is a table of the Dutch possessive pronouns.
- This table lists the (formally) stressed forms. You can read more on the difference between stressed and unstressed in the lesson on stressed and unstressed pronouns.
- The second person is divided into formal and informal. The formal form is both singular and plural. You can read more on the use of the second-person pronouns in the course on politeness.
- You can read more on how third-person pronouns are used to refer to people, animals, objects, place names, etc. in the lesson on gender and pronouns.
- The first person plural is the only possessive pronoun that declines according to the gender of the noun it accompanies: onze for de words, ons for het words.
Possessive contruction with proper names also exist in Dutch. This can be done in three different ways:
These constructions express the same possessive relationship, but the third versions (Alan z’n adres, Hanna d’r buren) is more likely to occur in informal registers.
Note the absence of the apostrophe in the spelling of the Dutch Alans adres compared with English: ‘Alan’s address’. An apostrophe is used only when the noun ends in an /s/ sound or a vowel (a, e, i, o, u, y).