How to use Possessive Pronouns in French

How to use Possessive Pronouns in French

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In this grammar lesson you will learn how to use possessive pronouns in French.

In this lesson you will learn about:

  • what possessive pronouns are
  • how to use possessive pronouns in French
  • how possessive pronouns are used in French sentences
  • how to quiz yourself on how to use possessive pronouns in French
  • the way to download Anki files for how to use possessive pronouns in French

Please refer to the French A2 Curriculum to get a better overview of French grammar, if you are curious about how this fits in A2 grammar.

By the end of the lesson you will know all about how to use possessive pronouns French!

Table of Contents

Possessive Pronouns in French

Masc Sing.Fem Sing.Masc PluralFem Plural
minele mienla mienneles miensles miennes
yoursle tienla tienneles tiensles tiennes
his/hersle sienla sienneles siensles siennes
oursle nôtrela nôtreles nôtresles nôtres
yours (pl)le vôtrela vôtreles vôtresles vôtres
theirsle leurla leurles leursles leurs

What are Possessive Pronouns?

Possessive pronouns are used in place of a noun, to show to what or to whom that noun belongs.

So instead of saying:

The pen belongs to Clara. This is the pen of Clara.

You would say:

The pen belongs to Clara. It’s hers.

Possessive pronouns indicate the ownership of a noun (e.g. a pen).

How to use Possessive Pronouns in French

As you can see in the table, there are 21 possessive pronouns in French.

This is vastly more than in English, as French is a gendered language.

In French, you have to agree the possessive pronoun with the gender of the noun possessed.

You must NOT agree the gender of the French possessive pronoun with the gender of the possessor.

Let’s take a look at some examples to better understand this.

C’est le stylo de Clara. C’est le sien.

It’s Clara’s pen. It’s hers.

Clara is a woman, but the pen (le stylo) is masculine.

Because le stylo is masculine, you have to use a masculine possessive pronoun.

In this case le stylo is singular, so we have to use le sien.

Here’s another example.

C’est la montre de Jean. C’est la sienne.

It is the watch of Jean. It’s his.

Jean is a man, but the watch (la montre) is feminine.

Because la montre is feminine, you have to use a feminine possessive pronoun.

In this case la montre is singular, so we have to use la sienne.

We have handled two examples where the gender was relevant.

Now I would like to show you two examples where the number is important.

Nos enfants sont à l’école. Où sont les vôtres ?

Our children are at school. Where are yours?

Ce sont les chaussures de mes parents. Elles sont les leurs.

These are my parents’ shoes. They are theirs.

In both examples the nouns are plural (children and shoes).

As such, you have to choose the plural possessive pronoun.

In all cases the possessive pronoun agrees with the thing that is possessed, and not with the owner.

It helps if you know how to identify the gender of nouns.

But don’t worry, as you progress, you will become better at identifying the gender of nouns!

Examples Sentences on How to use Possessive Pronouns in French

The final section of this lesson on how to use possessive pronouns French is about seeing the pronouns in action.

This is valuable because you can improve your understanding on how to use possessive pronouns in French through examples.

Je pense que c’est le mien.

I think this is mine.

Est-ce la tienne ?

Is it yours?

C’est le stylo de Clara. C’est le sien.

It’s Clara’s pen. It’s hers.

C’est la montre de Jean. C’est la sienne.

It is the watch of Jean. It’s his.

Cette école est la nôtre.

This school is ours.

Nos enfants sont à l’école. Où sont les vôtres ?

Our children are at school. Where are yours?

Ce sont les chaussures de mes parents. Elles sont les leurs.

These are my parents’ shoes. They are theirs.

Quiz Yourself on How to use Possessive Pronouns in French

It’s not enough just to read the article on how to use possessive pronouns in French.

You should test your knowledge to see if you really understood everything, and to be able to repeat the material.

It is also for this reason that it is recommended to download the Anki Decks and do them.

At the end of every lesson you can do a small test.

You will see the sentences of the previous chapter. It is up to you to give the correct answer.

You will either need to fill in the blanks, choose the correct multiple choice option, or both.

Once you are done the correct answer will be shown.

You can redo the quiz as many times as you want.

Anki File for How to use Possessive Pronouns in French

It is important to do the Anki excercises for this lesson, so that you can remember what you just studied.

By downloading the Anki File for French A2 you can practice every French A2 lesson that is on Language Atlas.

At this moment the Anki File for this lesson doesn’t exist yet. However, in due time this will be available on Language Atlas.

If you don’t know why you should use Anki, or don’t know how to use Anki or merge Anki files please click here.

Anki can be downloaded from here.

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