Possessive Adjectives

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  • Singular
    mijn (m'n)
    jouw (je)
    your (informal)
    your (polite)
    ons / onze
    jullie (je)
    your (informal)
    your (formal)
    zijn (z'n)
    hun their

    Ons is used before singular neuter nouns, and onze is used elsewhere (before singular common nouns, and all plural nouns.) Je, the unstressed form of jouw, is commonly used in spoken and written Dutch, unless the speaker/writer wants to stress the pronoun. In the plural, jullie is the norm, unless jullie has already been used in the sentence. Then je is used to avoid the redundancy. The other unstressed forms are not commonly written, but are commonly spoken.

    Like in English, Dutch possessive adjectives are used in front of a noun to show possession: mijn boek (my book). There are a few ways to express the -'s used in English too. -s can be added to proper names and members of the family: Jans boek (John's book) The preposition van can be used to mean of: het boek van Jan (the book of John = John's book) And in more colloquial speech, the unstressed forms in parentheses above (agreeing in gender and number) can be used in place of the -s: Jan z'n boek (John's book)

    To form the possessive pronouns, add -e to the stressed forms (except for jullie) and use the correct article. The only way to show possession with jullie is to use van jou (literally meaning "of you"), although all the others can be used with van too.

    de/het mijne, jouwe, uwe, zijne, hare, onze, hunne (mine, yours, yours, his/its, hers, ours, theirs)

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