While reading a letter written by Queen Elizabeth I of England in 1588, I came across a certain construction that doesn't seem to be grammatical in English:
RIGHT trustie, and righte welbelovid cousines wee greete you well. Whereas heertofore upon the advertismentes, from time to time and from sondrie places, of the great preparations of foren forces, made with a full intention to invade this our Realme and other our dominions
If I were writing a letter like this, I would have to use some wording like "other dominions of ours" or "our other dominions". (Or maybe something like "other(s) of our dominions", but I'm not quite sure about that—it may be material for another question.)
I checked the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) entries for our and other, but I didn't see any examples or explanation of the grammar of "other our". I would appreciate it if anyone could point me to a source that explains the grammar of this construction, and why it doesn't seem to be grammatical in the English of today.
I do have a guess about what is going on. To me, it seems like Elizabeth is using our as a "regular" adjective, and not as a determiner. That is, I think the structure of "other our dominions" is the same as the structure of a phrase like "other British dominions".
Our in modern English doesn't act like an (ordinary) adjective
This usage doesn't seem to be possible in standard modern English: I think our for me always functions as a determiner. This is consistent with the analysis where our in modern English is viewed as a "genitive/possessive pronoun" (not as an adjective). Pronouns are used in place of noun phrases, and we can say that a word like her stands for a genitive/possessive noun phrase like "the Queen's". According to this analysis, it makes sense that I can't say things like "other her dominions", because I also can't say things like "other the Queen's dominions". Genitive noun phrases and genitive pronouns can't be put into the "attributive adjective slot" in a modern English noun phrase.
Our in Elizabeth's letter seems to be used like an ordinary adjective
But the description of our as a "possessive adjective" seems to be more valid in older forms of English. For example, the OED says that our originally inflected like an adjective: "Old English ūre, adjective, was declined like ordinary adjectives in -e, e.g. masculine accusative singular ūrne, masculine and neuter genitive singular ūres, masculine and neuter dative singular and common plural ūrum, etc. "
If I'm right about our being used as an adjective and not as a determiner in the quoted passage, I'd like to know at what point this use of our (and other "possessive adjectives") became impossible in standard English.
Other examples that I found
I searched Google for some more examples of the phrase "other our dominions", and found that it occurred as late as 1665, in the Charter of Carolina. It seems quite possible though that a charter might use archaic language, so this doesn't show that the construction was in common use in the 17th century.
I also found an early example (actually several examples) of this construction in Edward I's Confirmation of the Charters in 1297. Interestingly, it looks like a parallel structure is used in the French version: English "other our ministers" corresponds to French "autres nos ministres". I don't know if this might indicate that the use of this construction was influenced by French grammar.
I also found examples from Google Books of our being used "like an adjective" in other contexts: for example, after the determiner any (e.g. "any our Subjects" or "any our dominions").
To be clear, I'm not only interested in "other our dominions", but also in other phrases of the same structure, like "other his books", "other my shoes" or so on. I want to know the grammar of this construction, when it was used, and when it stopped being used.