Tip: If you're serious about improving your writing, one of the best ways is to improve your vocabulary — not so you know how to use big words, but so you can choose the right word at the right time to convey your meaning precisely and simply. To improve your vocabulary, we highly recommend you try the popular vocabulary-improvement software called Ultimate Vocabulary. Click Ultimate Vocabulary for details.*
In this case, you're is an abbreviated way of saying or writing you are. The words are squished together, and the a drops off. The place where the a used to be is shown with the apostrophe, giving us you're. The apostrophe in you're does NOT indicate possession.
Your, on the other hand, is a possessive adjective. This means that the word indicates ownership (possessing, having, or owning something), as in This is your cake, not mine. The cake belongs to you, not me (but if you're generous, maybe you’ll share?).
To decide which spelling to use when you’re writing, say the sentence aloud, and see if “you are” fits the meaning. If it does, then you can use you're. If “you are” doesn’t make sense in the sentence, then you probably need your.
An example to show you what I mean: I’d love to come to your party (and have some of your cake). Imagine saying this sentence as I’d love to come to “you are” party (and have some of “you are” cake). You can see right away that it makes no sense, so your is the spelling you want to use.
Another example: You’re so very kind. Again, imagine the “your” sounding words expanded to “you are” — “You are” so very kind. You can see right away that the sentence makes sense, so you're (a contraction of you are) is the correct spelling to use.
To see if you understand the difference between you're and your, choose the right version of you're/your below:
1. You're/Your fired!
2. I left my camera in you're/your car
3. Who is you're/your best friend?
4. You're/Your mum called to say you're/your in big trouble!
5. You're/Your very wise if you download Ultimate Vocabulary to improve you're/your vocabulary!
1. You're; 2. your; 3. your; 4(a) Your, 4(b) you're; 5(a) You're, 5(b) your
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