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Showing Possession: Showing Possession (#4)

Dennis Oliver

Another common way of showing possession in English
is through using 
of with a possessive ('s, s') proper noun
(name).This usage is similar to 
of + a possessive pronoun:

Bob is a friend of Jim's.

Mrs. Smith is a neighbor of the Smiths'.

Angela and Julie are friends of Bob's and Jane's.

Is this painting one of Lisa's?

If you don't have a pencil, use one of Dennis'.

Amy has three dogs. Is that dog one of Amy's?

I borrowed two of Bob's books and several of Ken's.

The boss likes several of their ideas and all of Bob's
and mine.

Jim ate his lunch and also half of Ted's.


Special Notes:


Notice these differences in meaning:

Bob is a friend of Jim'sand Bill's.
Bob is a friend of Jim and Bill's.

In the first sentence, Bob is Jim's friend and
he's also Bill's friend. The two friendships are
separate. In the second sentence, Bob is a friend
whom Jim and Bill share.

We went in Jim's and Bill's cars.
We went in Jim and Bill's car.

In the first sentence, we went in Jim's car and
in Bill's car. There were at least two cars. In
the second sentence, there's only one car--and
it belongs to both Jim and Bill.

2. The + family name + 's (or s') usually means
'Mr. and Mrs. [name]: Mr. ___ and his
wife ___ In "a neighbor of the Smiths',"
someone is a neighbor to both Mr. and Mrs. Smith.
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