Possessive pronouns in Igbo

Welcome back!

In today’s lesson, we are going to be looking at possessive pronouns in Igbo and how they appear in phrases.

Possessive pronouns are words that show ownership, from them you get to know who owns what in a sentence. Some examples of possessive pronouns in English are:

My bag
His mother
Our car
Your house
Their school

All the underlined words above are English possessive pronouns.

So now let’s move on to Igbo possessive pronouns, which are called ‘Ǹnọ̀chíónyē’ in Igbo.

The possessive pronouns of Igbo are:

Igbo Possessive Pronouns

IgboEnglish
My
Gị́Your
His/Her/Its
Ànyị́Our
ÚnùYou all’s
Their

You may have noticed that some of the possessive pronouns in Igbo are the same as the standard pronouns in Igbo, don’t worry you will know which word the person means from context.

Now that you know what the possessive pronouns in Igbo are, let’s look at how to use them in sentences.

How to use possessive pronouns in Igbo

In English possessive pronouns come before the noun, e.g. in the phrase ‘our father’ the possessive pronoun ‘our’ comes before the noun ‘father’. However, Igbo is a little different (got to add a little ginger to the sentences), in Igbo the possessive pronoun comes after the noun, e.g. in the phrase ‘Àkpà gị́’ the possessive pronoun ‘gị́’ comes after the noun ‘Àkpà’.

Now let’s move on to building sentences using Igbo possessive pronouns, I have listed some example phrases below so you can see how Igbo possessive pronouns look in phrases.

Examples of Igbo phrases with possessive pronouns

IgboEnglish
Ńnà ḿMy father
Ńné mMy mother
Ụ́lọ̀ gị́Your house
Àkpà gị́Your bag
Ákwụ́kwọ́ yāHis/her book
Ényì yáHis/her friend
Ọ́dụ̀ yáIts tail
Ụ́lọ̀ákwụ́kwọ́ ányịOur school
Òbòdò ányịOur country
Égó únùYou all’s money
Ńrí únùYou all’s food
Ụ́lọ̀ụ́kà háTheir church
Ákwà háTheir clothes

Take note

The possessive pronoun ‘Ànyị́’ in Igbo has a downward-facing accent over the ‘A’ and then an upwards-facing accent over the ‘ị’ (which we would call a low and a high tone) when the word is on it’s own, but when the word is next to another word it losses the accent over the ‘ị’.

Anyhoo, that’s everything for today’s lessons, make sure to get some practice in creating your own Igbo phrases with possessive pronouns.

Remember the more you practice, the more you learn.

See you in the next lesson!