Confused about Possessives
To put it short I'm really confused at how the possessives work, I know ones like Hennes and hans but all of these get me - var, min, mitt, deras, din, ditt, er, vart, ert, mina, dina, dess, sin, sitt, sina, era and vara, it just seems as though some of them mean the same word but are used in different situations. If anyone could help me with tihs it would be greatly appreciated.
For possessives and for any adjectives, there are three forms of the word. One ending in "-a", one in "-tt" and one without any special ending.
As you know, in Swedish there are "ett" word and "en" words. If the adjective or possessive pronoun you're using is modifying an "ett" word, that adjective or possessive pronoun will also end in "-tt". Here's an example: Det är mitt äpple. Since "äpple" is an "ett" word you use "mitt" instead of "min."
Similarly, if you are using a possessive pronoun or adjective to modify an "en" word, that modifier would have no specialized ending. For an example: Det är min hund. I used "min" instead of "mitt".
But if you are talking about plurals, the modifier ends in "-a" regardless of whether they are "ett" or "en" words. De är mina äpplen. De är mina hundar. Both use "mina" because both "äpplen" and "hundar" are plural.
En stor hund - a big dog
Stora hundar - big dogs
Ett stort äpple - a big apple
Stora äpplen - big apples
There are a few exceptions, such as "bra" which means "good" never changes:
Ett bra äpple - a good apple
En bra hund - a good dog
Bra hundar - good dogs
Bra äpplen - good apples
So this is why you see er, ert, era, min, mitt, mina, din, ditt, dina, vår, vårt, våra, sin, sitt, sina etc..
this video explains quite well.
I hope this helps :)
That's correct for first and second person. For third person it's a bit different.
For third person singular 'hans' and 'hennes' are used regardless of gender and number of the object:
hans hund - his dog
hans äpple - his apple
hans hundar - his dogs.
And for third person plural it's the same with 'deras':
deras hund - their dog
deras äpple - their apple
deras hundar - their dogs
HOWEVER, when it's reflexive (I think it's called), where you've already introduced the person in the sentence, you should use 'sin', 'sitt' or 'sina', both in singular and plural:
Hon går med sin hund - She is walking her dog
Hon äter sitt äpple - She is eating her apple
Hon älskar sina hundar - She loves her dogs.
Bröderna matar sin hund - The brothers are feeding their dog
Maskarna äter på sitt äpple - The worms are eating on their apple
De kör sina bilar - They drive their cars
Oh, I forgot about 'dess'. It works just like 'hans' and 'hennes' but for non-personal subjects (both common and neuter gender):
dess färg - its colour
dess fönster - its window / its windows
dess färger - its colours
A table with all pronouns can be found at: