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Pronouns in questions

Level: beginner

We use who to ask questions about people:

Who is that?
Who lives here?
Who did you see?

We use whose to ask about possession:

Whose coat is this? or Whose is this coat?
Whose book is that?   or Whose is that book?
Whose bags are those? or

Whose are those bags?

We use what to ask questions about things:

What is that?
What do you want?

We use which to ask someone to choose something:

Which came first, the chicken or the egg?
I've got two books. Which do you want?

We can also use what and which with nouns:

What subjects did you study at school?
What newspaper do you read?
Which newspaper do you read –
The Times or The Guardian?
Which book do you want?
Which one is yours?

Pronouns in questions 1

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We often have a preposition at the end of a question:

Who does this book belong to?
What are you looking for?
Which university did you go to?

Pronouns in questions 2

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Pronouns in questions 3

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Comments

Hello PaolaPao,

I'm afraid that is not a correct sentence. I'm not sure what you are trying to say, to be honest. Are you talking about a play in the theatre, or a game or sport?

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hi Peter!

I don' t have clear the rule question with preposition :(. In this example: What are you looking for? why not What are looking at? when I have to use for or at or about? :/

Hello PaolaPao,

Both 'look for' and 'look at' are correct, but they mean different things! If you look up 'look' in the dictionary – you can use the search box on the right side of this page or follow the link on the word – you can see definitions and example sentences. It's also possible to use other prepositions with 'look' – you'll see those in the dictionary entry as well.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

hello sir,
"how long do you take to cook Pasta?"
is it right or wrong?

Hello Afia shakir khan,

That's fine. It sounds a little bit odd to me, as it suggests that some people might need more time to cook pasta than others, but it's grammatically correct. I'd probably ask 'How long does it take to cook pasta?' instead.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

yee i got 44 out of 44. I am in love with this site. this is really helpfull. :) I hope i will be able to speak english soon.

I’ve got two books. Which do you want?

isn't it wrong?
which one do you want should be used, in my opinion.

It is fine to say "which do you want?". But "which one" are commonly used in the situation.

hello learnenglish.britishcouncil.org staff,
Thank you for your pretty and useful job that you are doing here

You said: What subjects did you study at school?
can we say: which subjects did you study at school?
are these two sentences the same ?
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Who does this book belong to? is like when we use "whose"?
which university did you go to ? is it like when we use "what" ?
what country do you come from? is it like when when use "where"?

-"What subjects did you study at school?" is generally used because there are a lot of subjects we study at school. But we can also use which if there are a limited number of subjects we have to study.
Let's say the school offers a group of 10 subjects for a course but you only need to study 5 subjects to finish the course. In that case, we can use "which". It depends on the context to decide which one to use "what" or "which".
- "whose" is used to ask which person a particular thing belongs to. "Whose book is it?"
- We use "which" in this case because there are a limited number of universities in a location (city, town,.....) and in generally, we study at one university.
-" what country" is used in this case because the speaker knows that you are from another country and they want to know the name of your country. Of course we can use "where" here but it sounds less formal.

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