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1st and 2nd Person Possessives

Mine, Yours, and Ours

Let’s take a closer look at this first group of possessives: meu, teu, nosso and vosso, plus their feminine and plural forms.

Subject Possessive Pronoun/Determiner
(for masculine nouns)
Possessive Pronoun/Determiner
(for feminine nouns)
Eu meu paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio my, mine
meus paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio my, mine
minha paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio my, mine
minhas paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio my, mine
Tu teu paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio your, yours
teus paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio your, yours
tua paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio your, yours
tuas paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio your, yours
Nós nosso paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio our, ours
nossos paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio our, ours
nossa paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio our, ours
nossas paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio our, ours
Vós, Vocês vosso paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio your, yours
vossos paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio your, yours
vossa paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio your, yours
vossas paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio your, yours

Gender and Number Agreement

Remember that the pronoun/determiner has to agree in gender and number with the noun it refers to, rather than the person/subject.
For example, if we’re talking about single objects, such as um jornal paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio a newspaper (a masculine noun) or uma revista paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio magazine (a feminine noun), we’d get:

  • O meu jornal e a minha revista. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio My newspaper and my magazine. – Each belonging to me
  • O teu jornal e a tua revista. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio Your newspaper and your magazine. – Each belonging to you (individual)
  • O nosso jornal e a nossa revista. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio Our newspaper and our magazine. – Each belonging to us
  • O vosso jornal e a vossa revista. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio Your newspaper and your magazine. – Each belonging to you (group)

In these examples, we used possessive determiners along with the nouns that we mentioned explicitly. Below, we’ll use possessive pronouns to describe multiple newspapers and multiple magazines, without mentioning them explicitly:

  • Os meus e as minhas. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio Mine and mine. – Each group of them belonging to me
  • Os teus e as tuas. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio Yours and yours. – Each group of them belonging to you (individual)
  • Os nossos e as nossas. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio Ours and ours. – Each group of them belonging to us
  • Os vossos e as vossas. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio Yours and yours. – Each group of them belonging to you (group)

As you can see, there is still gender and number agreement in every case based on the nouns in reference.

Comments

  • The Portuguese s sound (sh) is driving me crazy! Most of these sentences are real tongue-twisters, and I must pronounce them extremely slowly to get them right, especially since the final ‘sh’ turns into an ‘s’ before a word beginning with a vowel …

  • Hi, sorry, I’m sure I’ve seen the answer to this somewhere, but can’t find it now.
    I understand that the pronoun agrees with the noun. But if I want to say ‘It is mine’ and I’m female, would it be ‘Esta minha’? (With accent) Or would it still agree with whatever I’m talking about? Perhaps it is that now I think about it. So if we were talking about a book, which is masculine, I would say ‘Esta meu’ or ‘E (with accent) meu’?
    Many thanks!
    Fiona

    • Olá, Fiona. Possessives always agree strictly with the object (“dele(s)/dela(s)”, the alternative forms for the third person, don’t count as true possessives). So, if the object is defined by a masculine noun, you should say “Este é meu” (or whatever is applicable, “ele/esse/aquele/isto…”).

  • As mentioned above, I can’t figure out when “s” is pronounced “sh” and when it isn’t. Is it mostly when it ends a word? It seems to vary randomly. Are there any rules about this?

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