Unit 11.2

Possessive with Gerund

Syntax

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Introduction

The gerund (-ing form of verbs) can act as a noun.

When a noun comes before the gerund, we can apply the possessive case to that noun. {see Possessive Case, A1 level}

Form

The structure of possessive with gerund is:
Clause + noun + possessive case (‘s) + gerund

NOTE: We can also find possessive adjectives instead of the possessive case.

Example

  • The terrorist group’s attacking to the bank was a huge shock for us (their attacking).
  • Immigrants’ coming to the country is making some people angry (their coming).
  • Lower class’ being poor was not a problem for the upper class (their being).
  • All people heard about their murdering in the back street.
  • The psychologist’s talking about the energy of the soul helped many people become more positive (their talking).

Use

We use possessive with gerund when the gerund acts as a noun.

Summary

When a noun comes before the gerund, we can apply the possessive case to that noun. The gerund in this case acts as a noun.
{see Possessive Case, A1 level}

The structure of possessive with gerund is: We start with the clause followed by a noun, the possessive case (with the ‘s), the gerund and then the rest of the sentence.

For example:
John’s winning of the competition made many people happy.” = His winning of the competition made many people happy.
— My friend’s talking annoys people listening to her.” = Her talking annoys people listening to her.

NOTE: We can also find possessive adjectives instead of the possessive case.

For example:
— “The whole neighbourhood heard their fighting last night.”

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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