In general I do not understand the usage of "is its own" in a sentence. For example how should I understand "is its own" in the following sentence?

Since the hand of a clock is its own clearly definable concept, it is a good idea to create it an own class – BoundedCounter – for the sake of human readability.

Because I do not understand "is its own" I cannot rephrase the above sentence so it is not clear to me how to intepret the meaning of the sentence

  • Best if you'd include how you understand it after checking a dictionary.
    – shin
    Commented Apr 15, 2019 at 17:47
  • 1
    @shin - I'm all in favor of asking newer users to provide details, but dictionaries aren't always the best place to go look. (I wonder how this page would help a learner answer this question?)
    – J.R.
    Commented Apr 15, 2019 at 20:53

1 Answer 1


is its own is not a phrase.

its own clearly definable concept is a noun phrase, the complement of is.

Its own here means "standing on its own, not requiring reference to something else" rather than "belonging to itself".

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