Grammar » 29 » Possessions & Relations

In English we have words that we put before nouns to indicate who they belong to:

my jacket your parka

In Inuktut, we add an affix to the end of the noun. The above would be translated:

jaikaga Kulitaujait

The same endings can be used for possessions or relations:

atâtaga my father
innet your son
anânavut our (3+) mother

Different endings are used depending on whether the relation or the thing that is possessed is singular, dual or plural.  In this lesson we will look at the singular endings. For the dual and plural possessive endings, click here.



illuk house
illuga my house
illuit your (1) house
illunga his / her house
illuvuk our (2) house
illuvut our (3+) house
illusi your (2+) house
illungat their house

Note that all of the possessive endings delete the final -k of a noun.

For the Inuktut equivalent of your just add -t (instead of -it) to roots that have a long vowel or a double vowel at the end:

tuik shoulder
tuit your shoulder
annugâk clothing
annugât your clothing
tatsiak belt
tatsiat your belt



nukâk two younger brothers of a boy or younger sisters of a girl
nukâkka my two younger siblings (of the same sex)
nukâkkik your (1) two younger siblings (of the same sex)
nukâgik his or her two two younger siblings (of the same sex)
nukavuk our two younger siblings (of the same sex)
nukatik your (2+) two younger siblings (of the same sex)
nukagik their two younger siblings (of the same sex)
  • The last vowel sound of the root is lengthened before the endings -kkak and -kkik.
  • All dual endings delete the last consonant sound of the root to which they are added.
  • The endings for “his / her” and “their” are the same. Context makes it clear who you are speaking of.



panik daughter
panikka my daughters (3+)
panitit your (1) daughters (3+)
paningit his or her daughters (3+)
panivut our daughters (3+)
panisi your (2) daughters (3+)
paningit their daughters (3+)
  • All plural possessive endings delete the last consonant of roots they are added to.
  • The endings for “her/his” and “their” are the same. Context makes it clear who you are speaking of.



In English, when we want to name a person that something belongs to, we add an apostrophe + s to the person's name, followed by the object:

Mary's hat Peter's dog


In Inuktut, these three sentences would be written this way:

Mialiup nasanga Petaup Kimminga

Note that the affix -up is attached to the possessor's name, much like apostrophe + s is used in English.

  • the affix -nga is added to the person or thing that is possessed if it is singular; -gik if it is dual; and -ngit if it is plural.
annaup nasanga the woman's hat
angutiup pualogik the man's mittens (2)
Petaup Kimmingit Peter’s dogs (3+)