Possessive pronouns (10)
(Os pronomes possessivos)
Possessive pronouns are used to show ownership. They indicate who the owner of a certain thing is. Those pronouns can accompany, describe or replace a noun. Normally when you use a possessive pronoun referring to a noun you still have to use the article and the possessive goes between the article and the noun.
In Portuguese the possessive pronouns have feminine, masculine, singular and plural forms. Usually those pronouns agree in gender and number with the thing possessed, not with the person that possesses.
|my, mine (singular)||o meu||a minha|
|my, mine (plural)||os meus||as minhas|
|your (singular)||o teu||a tua|
|yours (plural)||os teus||as tuas|
|their (singular)||o seu||a sua|
|theirs (plural)||os seus||as suas|
|our (singular)||o nosso||a nossa|
|ours (plural)||os nossos||as nossas|
|your (singular)||o vosso||a vossa|
|yours (plural)||os vossos||as vossas|
Note that in the examples below the possessive pronouns are used with definite articles.
|O meu carro é novo. > My car is new.
A tua casa é amarela. > Your house is yellow.
As suas botas são grandes. > Your boots are big.
Os meus amigos são franceses. > My friends are french.
Os teus olhos são azuis. > Your eyes are blue.
As suas ovelhas são brancas. > Your sheep are white.
O nosso vizinho é estrangeiro. > Our neighbour is foreigner.
Os nossos profesores não são altos. > Our teachers are not tall.
A minha mãe tem trinta anos. > My mother is 30 years old.
Os vossos filhos estudam francês? > Do your children study french?
There is an important exception for the possessive pronouns |dele, deles| |dela, delas|. They agree in gender and number with the person. Possessive pronouns normally cannot be used alone. In this case, they are accompanied by definite articles.
The possessive pronouns |seu, seus| |sua, suas| can be used to refer to |your, yours| |his| |her, hers| and |their, theirs| causing ambiguities, because you don’t know if the pronoun is referring to you or to other person.
In some cases to avoid ambiguity of the noun’s ownership, the possessive pronouns |dele, deles| |dela, delas| are used to refer to:
his > dele
her/hers > dela
their/theirs > deles
their/theirs > delas
These pronouns agree in gender and number with the person who owns the thing, because these possessive pronouns always refer to the person and not to the object.
|of him / of her||dele||dela|
|O pai deles. > Their father. (The father of them.)
A mãe dela. > Her mother. (The mother of her.)
A amiga delas. > Their girlfriend. (The girlfriend of them.)
O primo dele. > His cousin. (The cousin of him.)