We can use personal pronouns in the possessive case:

  1. The book is mine. / Mine is missing.
  2. The shirt is yours. / Yours is missing.

Can we use the indefinite pronoun someone like this?

  1. The book is someone’s. / Someone’s is missing.

So can we use someone’s as a standalone possessive pronoun, not just as a possessive determiner like:

  1. This is someone’s book. / Someone’s book is missing.
  • 1
    "Someone" is a compound determinative, not a pronoun. Yes: "The book is someone's".
    – BillJ
    Commented Oct 15, 2022 at 11:02
  • @BillJ Or even: This books isn’t mine, so it must be someone else’s.
    – tchrist
    Commented Oct 15, 2022 at 15:03

2 Answers 2


You can use 'someone' in the possessive case.

In the crowd, I accidentally stood on someone's foot.

  • but here it is adjective not pronoun
    – Hadman
    Commented Oct 15, 2022 at 8:20
  • 2
    @Hadman No: in "someone's foot" "someone's" is a (compound) determinative functioning as a genitive fused determiner-head meaning "some person's foot". It can also stand alone as in "I can't trace the owner, but it must be someone's", meaning it must belong to some person"
    – BillJ
    Commented Oct 15, 2022 at 10:59
  • it means someone and one pronouns do not have possesive form as a pronoun.when we show possession with these pronoun they become determiner right.
    – Hadman
    Commented Oct 16, 2022 at 12:08
  • Wrong. Who says it's adjective not pronoun? Pronouns do have possessive forms: his, her(s), its, our(s), your(s), their(s), my, mine. The fact that they're possessive and modify something like all possessives does not make them adjectives. Clearly you shouldn't be studying parts of speech without adequate information. Commented Oct 16, 2022 at 18:55

It makes sense to me that "ones" and "someones" are legitimate possessive pronouns and do not need the apostrophe.

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