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Expressing possession with son, sa, ses and personne, tout le monde, chacun, il faut (possessive adjectives)

Look at these examples:

Chacun a son billet?
Does everyone have their ticket?

Il faut toujours avoir sa carte sur soi.
One must always have one's map on them.
You must always have your map on you.

Personne n'a ses clés ?
Does nobody have their keys ? 

Tout le monde a son opinion.
Everyone's got their (own) opinion.

Note that when expressing possession with indefinite pronouns (personnetout le monde, chacun/eand impersonal expressions such as il faut, you will use the possessive adjectives son, sa or ses (its/one's here).

Remember that possessive pronouns agree in gender and number with the *owned* item (son billet / sa carte / ses parents).
See Common mistakes with mon/ma/mes, ton/ta/tes and son/sa/ses (possessive adjectives) 

ATTENTION: You never use notre/nos (our), nor votre/vos (your)

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources

Tout le monde a son opinion.
Everyone's got their (own) opinion.


Chacun a son billet?
Does everyone have their ticket?


Il faut écouter ses parents.
One must listen to one's parents.


Il faut toujours avoir sa carte sur soi.
One must always have one's map on them.
You must always have your map on you.


Personne n'a ses clés ?
Does nobody have their keys ? 


Q&A

Jan

Kwiziq community member

20 May 2018

2 replies

Is there another correct way to translate this sentence?

Personne n'a ses clés ?
Does nobody have their keys ? 

"Does nobody have their keys?" strikes me as something that would rarely if ever be said in (American) English. Is there another correct way to translate this? Because this one will be really hard for me to remember because it seems so very strange.

Chris

Kwiziq community member

22 May 2018

22/05/18

I think you got it right. -- Chris (not a native speaker).

Bonnie

Kwiziq community member

15 June 2018

15/06/18

Doesn't anyone have his keys?

Jan

Kwiziq community member

20 May 2018

1 reply

Is there another correct way to translate this sentence?

Cécile

Kwiziq language super star

25 May 2018

25/05/18

Which sentence is that Jan?

Ron

Kwiziq community member

24 October 2017

1 reply

What is the difference here: son propre défaut vs. son défaut ?

Chacun a son propre défaut. I think that the above locution has the same sense as «Chacun a son défaut.»; however it was marked incorrect on the quiz. Please advise the difference.

Chris

Kwiziq community member

24 October 2017

24/10/17

"son défaut" = his fault
"son propre défaut" = his own fault

I hope that helps. -- Chris (...and you already know what I am not ;)

Judy

Kwiziq community member

11 April 2017

3 replies

Why was "sa" used here? It is the only example of "sa".

Il faut toujours avoir sa carte sur soi.
One must always have one's map on them.
You must always have your map on you.

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

11 April 2017

11/04/17

Bonjour Judy !

The reason you used "sa" here is that "carte" is a feminine noun, and that the possessive adjectives always agree with the *owned* object in French :)
The other examples were simply masculine ones, hence "son", or plural "ses".

However, I've decided to add a note to remove any ambiguity :)
I hope that's helpful!
Merci et à bientôt !

Judy

Kwiziq community member

12 April 2017

12/04/17

Bonjour Aurelie! I kept pondering this lesson and finally figured out that my problem was the first example on the page: "Tout le monde a son opinion." I knew the owned object was feminine but forgot that since "opinion" started with a vowel I needed to use the masculine "son"!
It might be clearer to have a "sa" answer in the first set of examples. But then I wouldn't have reviewed the adjustment we have to make at times with words starting with a vowel or silent h!
I really have enjoyed your lessons. They are very clear to a 78 year old French learner.
Merci et a bientot!

Judy

Kwiziq community member

12 April 2017

12/04/17

Oh, I see you already fixed everything. Good job!
Merci et a bientot!

Charles

Kwiziq community member

11 April 2016

1 reply

Just had this question pop up on a quiz:

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

12 April 2016

12/04/16

Bonjour Charles,

Unfortunately, I cannot see which question you are referring to.
Can you add details, and I'd be happy to answer you!

A plus tard!

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