I know that

  • "Your" is a determiner and,
  • "Yours" is a possessive pronoun.

I had a case where I wasn't sure if it should be used as a determiner or pronoun:

In response from your and someone's answers


In response from yours and someone's answers

Which was the correct use?

  • 1
    It's "response to..."
    – Mari-Lou A
    May 19 '17 at 4:35

Your is a possessive adjective:

Your raincoat is red.

Whereas yours is a possessive pronoun:

That raincoat of yours is red.

Yours, the possessive pronoun is used to refer to a thing or things belonging to or associated with the person or people that the speaker is addressing.

With your example phrase:

In response from your and someone's answers.

You could say:

In response to your and someone's answer, it could be concluded that....

or alternatively:

In response to someone's answer and [also] yours, it could be concluded that...

With the latter example, the possesive pronoun yours is referring to the answer.


To stick with the distinction between possessive pronoun vs. determiner, consider this excellent description offered by Cambridge Dictionary:

We use pronouns to refer to possession and ‘belonging’. There are two types: possessive pronouns and possessive determiners. We use possessive determiners before a noun. We use possessive pronouns in place of a noun

They provide this example:

Is that [determiner] your scarf? It’s very similar to [pronoun] mine

They also offer this advice with an example:

Don’t use possessive pronouns before nouns

Lots of our friends were at the party.

Not: Lots of ours friends …

It's understandable that the two can be confused, since they can both replace a Proper noun. Consider these examples:

The apple is yours. (possessive pronoun)

This is your apple. (determiner)

In either case, the word could be replaced with "Alice's."

The apple is Alice's.

This is Alice's apple.

The structure of the sentence in the question takes the form of the latter, where "your" functions as a determiner. Remember, as Cambridge recommended, you don't use a possessive pronoun before a noun. In the example given, "answers" is a noun, so you would use a determiner, not a possesive pronoun.

In response to your answers

and not

In response to yours answers

The fact that you are adding another person to the equation doesn't affect this use (with the exception of a caveat I'll get to in a moment). You still would write

In response to your and Alice's answers

The caveat is, as was pointed out in the other answer, this is still a somewhat awkward phrasing, and it could be rephrased "In response to you and Alice's answers," just like you might write "In response to Steve and Alice's answers." But if you want to adhere to the structure in the question, you can't go wrong following the guidelines provided by Cambridge. Since "your" modifies "answers," it functions as a determiner.


Let us suppose that John is the other person, so we are talking about your answers and about John’s. Because the clitic falls at the end of the entire noun phrase it is modifying, here you and John, the correct form here should be something more along these lines:

In response to you and John’s answers, I have decided to award you both the first prize.

Because combining first or second person possessives with third person ones is always going to sound awkward(see this question), I would rewrite to avoid this:

In response to the answers from both you and John, I have decided to award the two of you the first prize in this contest.

  • What if instead of "someones" it was the persons name... i.e. In response to yours and Peter's answers, I have decided to award you both first place. ?
    – Luke
    Sep 27 '16 at 0:53
  • @Luke That’s a good question. The combined noun phrase of you and Luke would take an apostrophe-s at the end. This is pretty awkward.
    – tchrist
    Sep 27 '16 at 0:57
  • This answer deserves more downvotes. This graph might make you think that the normal form was you and John's answer but those don't actually go together at all. The graph is actually showing you and some person of John's are what's being joined. You and John's answer don't go together at all...
    – lly
    May 19 '17 at 13:50
  • ...unless something like you and John's answer are both mistaken is what's being intended. Even there, you're right, it's awkward and should be reworded.
    – lly
    May 19 '17 at 13:52
  • For all those instances of you, why would we not expect … you and John’s answers to be exactly equivalent to … John’s and you answers…, please? May 22 '17 at 19:23

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