Your vs you’re
Similar to other pairs like whose and who’s, the pairing you’re and your often causes confusion. In fact, it’s not hard to find hundreds of mistakes bearing this out in the Oxford English Corpus, a collection of examples drawn from around the Internet. Those your vs you’re mistakes include the following:
X You wanted sumptuous and sumptuous is what your going to get.
X You’re last name is Major Darcy?
You’re is a contraction and is short for the two words ‘you are’. The apostrophe stands for the omitted ‘a’ of ‘are’:
√ You’re not in Philly any more, you’re in Detroit.
√ Whatever the reason, you’re in big trouble now.
Your is a possessive determiner and pronoun which means ‘belonging to you’:
√ What’s your name?
√ You can feel on top of the world by setting your own goal and going for it.
One way to do this is by considering whether or not a contraction is necessary. Expand the contraction from you’re to you are and see if the sentence still makes sense. For instance, the sentence You are last name is Major Darcy doesn’t make sense. You can do the same if you’re adding a contraction where it is not needed.
Take our your vs you’re quiz
If you’re feeling confident in your ability to tell the two words apart, then have a go at our your vs you’re quiz.