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Learn How to Use Interrogative Pronouns With the Help of Examples

Learn How to Use Interrogative Pronouns With the Help of Examples
The interrogative pronouns like who, which, what, etc., are used to ask questions. Penlighten explains their usage with example sentences, and enlists the various interrogative pronouns in German, French, Spanish, and Latin.
Prajakta Patil
Last Updated: Mar 9, 2018
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Interrogative Pronoun Vs. Interrogative Adjective
"Wh" words can also be used as interrogative adjectives. A quick tip to distinguish between the two - an interrogative adjective will always modify the noun or pronoun, unlike an interrogative pronoun, which always replaces the noun.
Interrogative pronouns are the pronouns used to ask questions. They are used to know what is unknown. All of them start with "wh", the reason why they are often referred to as "wh" words. These include:

» Who
» Whom
» Whose
» Which
» What
Let us now learn the proper usage of these pronouns with the help of various examples.
Usage of Interrogative Pronouns
★ Interrogative pronouns are used to ask direct questions as well as indirect questions.


» Who are you?
» What are you doing?
» What did you think?
» What is an island?
» Whom are you going with?


» I don't know what he is doing.
» Tell me who did this.
» I asked her who that was.
» Do you know whose book this is?
» Tell me what has happened.
★ Interrogative pronouns can be used in three cases: nominative (subject), accusative (object), and possessive.

(I) Nominative

» Who answered?
» Who is he?
» What is it?
» Which one is she?
» What is your address?

(II) Accusative

» Whom did you go to meet?
» Whom are you talking to?
» Whom did you see?
» Whom did you tell?
» Whom did you like?

(III) Possessive

» Whose book is this?
» Whose car was that?
» Whose do you think it is?
» Whose advice did you seek?
» Whose painting is that?
Interrogative Pronouns Rules
(I) Who and whose are used only for people.

» Who is that lady?
» Whose shoes are these?
» Who gave you this watch?
» Who are you talking to?
» Whom are you meeting?

(II) Which is used for both, people and things.

» Which movie did you watch?
» Which salon is better?
» Which one is your boyfriend?
» Which one are you buying?
» Which of these dresses is yours?

(III) What is used only for things.

» What have you done?
» What was that all about?
» What do you want?
» What is that in your purse?
» What are you wearing for the party?
Compound Interrogative Pronouns
Often, the suffix "-ever" is added to interrogative pronouns to add emphasis or to show confusion and surprise. For example, whoever, whichever, whatever. These are called compound interrogative pronouns.

» Whoever would do something like that?
» Whoever told you so?
» Whichever will you choose?
» Whatever are you doing?
» Whoever would sing like that?
Interrogative Pronouns in Different Languages
German French Spanish
wer (who) que (what) ¿quién?/¿quiénes? (who)
was (what) quoi (what) ¿a quién? / ¿a quiénes? (whom)
wem (to whom) qui (who/whom) ¿qué? / ¿qué? (what)
wen (whom) lequel (which) ¿cuál? / ¿cuáles? (which)
wessen (whose) - -
welcher (which) - -
Form Gender Nom. Gen. Dat. Acc. Abl.
SINGULAR Male quis cujus cui quem quô
Female quae cujus cui quam quâ
Neuter quid/quod cujus cui quid/quod quô
PLURAL Male qui quôrum quibus quos quibus
Female quae quârum quibus quas quibus
Neuter quae quôrum quibus quae quibus
The best way to learn the usage of interrogative pronouns is solving exercises, and practicing well. The various worksheets available on the Internet can be used for the same.