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Interrogative determiners: 'which' and 'what'

Level: intermediate

The interrogative determiners are which and what.

which is a specific determiner

Here are three books. Which book do you think is the most interesting?
They have four boys. Which boy is the oldest?
I can’t remember which house Janet lives in.
Which restaurant did you go to?

 

what is a general determiner

What food do you like?
I don’t know what job she does.

Interrogative determiners 1

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Interrogative determiners 2

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Comments

Sir.
Somebody wrote and said

There are about 50 different determiners in the English language they include:

Articles - a, an, the.

Demonstratives - this, that, these, those, which etc.

Possessives - my, your, our, their, his, hers, whose, my friend's, our friends', etc.

Quantifiers -few, a few, many, much, each, every, some, any etc.
More items...which of them fits or means "Integrative" Is it DEMONSTRATIVE? following his arrangement since he wrote (which ) as one of his examples ?
Thanks

Hello Akong,

We're happy to comment on our own material and explanations but we can't explain to you what someone else was thinking when they wrote something. There are interrogative determiners (I think this is what you mean, rather than 'integrative') which are used before nouns to ask questions (e.g. Which book do you want?).

 

You can find a useful categorisation of determiners on the relevant wikipedia page:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Determiner

 

I think if you want an explanation of this person's categorisation then you should contact them. It would not be appropriate for us to speak for that person.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Thanks sir.
You have solved my problem

Hi,
Is whose an interrogative determiner?

Hello jenneec,

'Whose' can be a pronoun (when it is not followed by a noun) or a possessive determiner (when it is followed by a noun). It can be used to form a question but it can also be used in other ways.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hi,
So it is a possessive interrogative determiner?
Can it come under interrogative determiners ?

Thankyou.

Hi jenneec,

Yes, when it precedes a noun in a question it is a possessive interrogative determiner.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Should I say "what's your favourite day of the week" or "which is your favorite day of the week"? Many English guidelines say that we should use "which" when there's a limited set of choices. In this case, is it better to use "which" in that sentence?

Hello gabriel,

The important thing is not whether there is a limited set of choices so much as it is that a set of choices has already been discussed. In the case of the days of the week, if you'd already been discussing Friday and Wednesday, for example, then 'which' would be the best choice. But if you haven't mentioned specific ones yet, then 'what' would be the correct choice.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hi!
In examples mentioned above under interrogative determiner, there is no mention about peoples or thing instead its a place in both the examples. In eg.
a. Restaurant and b. Countries, South America.
Which restaurant did you go to?
Which countries in South America have you visited? so, can we use What instead of which? It sounds a general question to me. Mr. Kirk please solve my confusion. Thanks

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