His

'His' is a possessive determiner of 'he'. In this part, we will go through its uses and grammatical rules in English grammar.

The Pronoun "His" in the English Grammar

His refers to the male animal or person. In this lesson, we will discuss when and how to use it.

1. 'His' as a Possessive Determiner

Use

His as a possessive determiner is used to modify the following noun. Here are its uses:

  • His is used to show the possessions of a male animal or person. For example:

His book is on the shelf.

Alan is a hardworking man. His effort was paid off finally.

'His' is used to refer to 'Alan.'

  • His can be generic. His is used to refer to a person without saying their gender. Look:

Everybody should know his responsibilities.

'His' is generic.

  • His, in some religions, is used to refer to God. Remember that His is always written with a capital 'H'. For example:

His beneficence is unforgettable.

Surely His world is full of beauty.

Royal 'His'

His is also used to refer to someone of a royal family, like kings, princes, dukes, etc. Take a look at the following example:

His Majesty, I know how difficult is the situation.

Position in a Sentence

His as a possessive determiner is used before nouns or noun phrases. Look:

His book is over there.

'His' is used before the noun 'book.'

2. 'His' as a Possessive Pronoun

Use

His as a possessive pronoun is generally used to refer to the connections and possessions of a male person or animal. Look:

  • His as a possessive pronoun is used to talk about things that a male person or animal owns. For example:

I couldn't believe that the car was his.

The mug with blueprints on it, is his.

  • His is used to refer to a male person's relationships like family, friends, colleagues, etc. Have a look:

My colleagues aren't friendly, but his are.

His mother always interferes with everything but not his.

The first 'his' is a possessive determiner because it precedes a noun but the second 'his' is a possessive pronoun.

  • His is also used to refer to body parts. Take a look at the following examples:

Normally bones heal faster, but not his.

'His' means 'his bones.'

He brought his mother to get her ears check but his were in a worst condition.

The second 'his' is a possessive pronoun.

Position in a Sentence

His as a possessive pronoun replaces a noun. Remember that the verb after his agrees with the antecedent. Here are some examples:

I have brought your book, but not his.

'His' is an object for the verb 'bring.'

My computer works but his does not work.

'His' is a subject.

'His' and the Preposition 'of'

In the structure determiner + noun + of + his, the noun becomes indefinite. This structure is used to show possession. Look:

Fred and that brother of his are always after some trouble.

A sister of his is a doctor.

We do not know which sister.

Another structure is determiner + noun + of + his own. This structure emphasizes that something belongs to a male person or animal. Look:

He wants a pet of his own.

'A pet that belongs only to him.'

A hamster of his own ran away the other night.

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