Yours vs Your’s

What’s the difference between yours and your’s?


Yours is the second person possessive pronoun – it replaces "your" + noun.

Is this yours or theirs?

He found a book – is it yours?

I can’t find my wallet, but yours is on the table.

Yours is a better idea.

Yours sincerely


Though you may see your’s written even by native speakers, it is incorrect. Yours should never have an apostrophe.

The Bottom Line

The idea that yours needs an apostrophe comes out of the fact that on virtually every other word, ‘s indicates possession, so English speakers sometimes think yours should be spelled your’s. However, this is always incorrect – yours is the only correct spelling.

Related difficulties:

7 comments for “Yours vs Your’s

  1. moshe
    11 June 2014 at 09:58

    so what is the correct form:
    1) the sweet cake is your
    2) the sweet cake is yours
    i though the first is the correct form, since the noun is already mentioned in the sentence, but the program (Duolingo) claim it is wrong.
    thank you

    • lkl
      11 June 2014 at 11:01

      “The sweet cake is yours” is the only correct way to say this.

      “Your” without s is an adjective, so it must be followed by a noun: your sweet cake. If it’s not followed by a noun but is rather replacing a noun, it’s a pronoun: “yours.”

  2. moshe
    11 June 2014 at 13:24

    Got it now.
    thank you.

    6 August 2014 at 05:23

    Y knot? As previously stated “Yours” is a “Possessive”.
    Using that criterion Alices, Brians, Toms etc. ought not to have one either.
    N’est pas?

    • lkl
      8 August 2014 at 16:46

      You’re looking at it backwards. The rule is that ‘s means possessive for thousands of names and nouns. There are just five exceptions: yours, hers, ours, theirs, and its.

      • grahm
        15 December 2014 at 06:23

        5 exceptions? What about his? hi’s would be bizarre, which rather proves the point.

  4. cvam
    28 August 2014 at 21:26

    And one exception to the exception, when referring to ‘cousin It’s’ hair 🙂
    Thanks, your post answered my question.

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