Unit 3.2

Possessive Case without Objects


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Introduction

The possessive form is used to talk about things that belong to a person, object or animal.

We can form the possessive case with a following objects or in some cases we can use a possessive without objects, if the meaning is clear.

Form

Possessive case without objects has two structures:

  • for places: preposition of place + owner + (‘s)…
  • for possessions: inanimate subject + verb + owner + (‘s)…

Example

  1. People’s properties:
    • Where did you write your report? – At Julia‘s.
    • In which internet café were you yesterday? – At Jim‘s.
    • Where did they organize the party? – At Frank‘s.
  2.  Possessive in the first and second sentence:
    • I don’t think it’s Rob‘s keyboard, I think it’s Keith‘s.
    • I didn’t receive a call from Maria‘s mother, but John‘s.
    • She didn’t go on a date with Mark‘s brother, but Max‘s. 
  3. Possessive in the question and the reply:
    • Is that your password? – No, it’s my father‘s.
    • Are these Laura‘s keys? – No, they are mine.
    • Is this her house? – No, it’s ours. 

Use

We use the possessive case without objects to avoid repetitions of possession.

We use it:

  1. when we talk about people’s houses, shops, firms and churches;
  2. when there is a possessive in the first sentence and in the second sentence;
  3. when there is a possessive in the question and in the reply.

Summary

We find the possessive case without objects in the same sentence to avoid repetitions of possession.

It has two structures:

  • for places: we start the clause with a preposition of place followed by the owner with ‘s.
  • for possessions: we start the clause with the inanimate subject followed by a verb followed by the owner with ‘s.

For example:
— “I am going to Jake‘s.” = When we talk about people’s houses, shops, firms…, we often drop the noun following the possessive (Jake’s house).
— “I don’t think it’s Rob‘s keyboard, I think it’s Keith‘s.” = We use the first possessive to refer to Rob’s keyboard, while we use the second possessive with an inanimate subject to avoid repetition.
♦ “It’s the keyboard of Keith‘s.” = We use the double genitive (of and the possessive case ‘s) to show the possession.

Let’s revise this content within the {Form} section. Take a look at the {Example} section that shows its use within a context.

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