Possessive adjectives and pronouns: Italian grammar lesson 29

To practice this grammar topic, take Lesson 29 of Ripeti Con Me!
possessive adjectives italian
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What are possessive adjectives in Italian?

Typically, at the beginning of your Italian language learning journey, you’ll need to master the Italian possessive adjectives.

In today’s post, you’ll learn how to use Italian possessive adjectives.

The term possessive adjectives (aggettivi possessivi in Italian) might sound scary, but all we’re talking about is how to say, “my”, “your”, “her/his/its”, “our” and “their”, as in the examples below:

  • Her jacket is so cool!
  • Our friend is not coming.

Whether you’re learning Italian the old school way of learning Italian online with the rest of us, the Italian possessive adjectives are of utmost importance to know.

Unless you’re planning to just not refer to people and their possessions at all, you’re going to need the possessive adjectives in your Italian repertoire.

italian possesive adjectives 2

While this table may look scary and unapproachable, with a little bit of effort, it won’t be long before you have it down!

To use Italian possessive adjectives correctly they need to coincide properly with gender (masculine/feminine) and in number (singular/plural) with the noun they refer to.

For instance, “hat” is masculine so it uses the masculine mio and miei.

My hat il mio cappello 
My hats i miei cappelli 

Legs, on the other hand, are feminine.

So when we’re talking about your leg or legs, we use the feminine versions, mia and mie.

My leg la mia gamba
My legs le mie gambe 

When to use possessive adjectives in Italian

We use possessive adjectives to talk about possession or ownership.

In Italian, possessive adjectives, like all other kinds of adjectives, must agree in gender and number with the noun possessed and not with the possessor, like in English.

It’s the same in Italian:

I miei genitori sono Olandesi.

My parents are from the Netherlands.

La mia bici è rossa.

My bike is red.

I vostri amici sono Inglesi?

Are your friends English?

Le vostre pizze sono pronte.

Your pizzas are ready.

When to use possessive adjectives in Italian

Possessive adjectives in Italian

Here is a table of all the Italian possessive adjectives:

MASCULINE SINGULAR FEMININE SINGULAR MASCULINE PLURAL FEMININE PLURAL
my mio mia miei mie
your (for tu) tuo tua tuoi tue
his, her, its suo sua suoi sue
our nostro nostra nostri nostre
your (for voi) vostro vostra vostri vostre
their loro loro loro loro

How to use possessive adjectives in Italian

As you have probably noticed in the examples above, possessive adjectives are almost always used with a definite article (il, la, lo, i, gli, le).

La nostra macchina è nuova.

Our car is new.

Oggi ti porto il tuo libro.

I will bring you your book today.

I loro cugini vivono a Bruxelles.

Their cousins live in Bruxelles.

Le mie amiche sono tutte in vacanza.

My (girl)friends are all on holiday.

Of course, there are always some exceptions.

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We do not use an article when talking about a blood relative in the singular:

Mio fratello è uscito.

My brother went out.

Mi ha chiamato mia mamma.

My mom called me.

Sua cugina abita a Roma.

Her cousin lives in Rome.

Nostro padre lavora in posta.

Our father works at the post office.

How to use possessive adjectives in Italian

What are possessive pronouns?

Now that you know the possessive adjectives in Italian, we can start talking about possessive pronouns, the equivalent in English to “mine”, “yours”, “his/hers/its”, “ours”, “yours” and “theirs”, like in the examples below:

  • This is mine!
  • I lost my phone, can you lend me yours?

And here we have some good news for you: if they are easy enough in English, they are even easier in Italian… They are exactly the same as the possessive adjectives!

MASCULINE SINGULAR FEMININE SINGULAR MASCULINE PLURAL FEMININE PLURAL
mine mio mia miei mie
yours (for tu) tuo tua tuoi tue
his, hers, its suo sua suoi sue
ours nostro nostra nostri nostre
yours (for voi) vostro vostra vostri vostre
theirs loro loro loro loro

mio tuo suo italian

Practice with Quizlet

Here's a set of flashcards and quizzes to practice this grammar topic.

When to use possessive pronouns

We use possessive pronouns to replace a noun so that we do not repeat it in a sentence.

You’ll understand better with examples:

Questa borsa è mia, quella è sua.

This bag is mine, that one is hers.

I libri sono nostri, non vostri.

The books are ours, they are not yours!

Quelle pizze non sono loro, sono tue!

Those pizzas are not theirs, they’re yours!

Still translating in your head? Wanna speak Italian for real? Check out Stefano's courses to think directly in Italian and become fluent fast!

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