a friend of Jane's (posesión)


Senior Member
Spanish & Galician
Hello everyone,

I don´t understand this structure:

I met a friend of Jane´s at the party ( I´d probably say: I met a friend of Jane at the party or I met Jane´s friend at the party) - Conocí a un amigo de Jane en la fiesta.

Thanks in advance!
  • pauloliebre

    Senior Member
    British English
    Se lo llama el "double genitive". (A phrasal construction in English in which possession is indicated by the word "of" followed by the possessive form of a noun or pronoun, as in "a relative of mine" or "a friend of Pat's". Also called double possessive.)
    Aunque se lo ve y se lo oye muy a menudo, es para evitar, máxime en la palabra escrita.
    Mejor - "I met one of Jane's friends".


    Chris K

    Senior Member
    English / US
    The structure "I met a friend of Jane's" is very common and natural, although in formal writing it would be less common. There might be situations in which one would use it conversationally rather than "I met one of Jane's friends," depending on the context and the emphasis one wished to give. For instance:

    "Who's that?"
    "He's a friend of Jane's."

    In the above, "he's one of Jane's friends" doesn't quite sound right, although it wouldn't be "incorrect."
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