Which five wh words are used

Question words: How do I use English question words?

There are many different ways on English questions to deliver. For example, you can ask about the subject, ask polite questions, or ask decision-making questions. This text deals with all questions that arise with a Question word start.

English question words

In English the most question words (question words) With wh-Which is why questions of this kind are common wh-questions to be named. Take a look at the following overview:

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Question words in English

  • where (where)
  • who (who / who)
  • when (when)
  • what (what)
  • why
  • whose (whose)
  • which (which / which / which)
  • how (how)

Just the question word howdoes not start with wh- at. The donkey bridge wh-questions so can help you memorize some question words.

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Use of the English question words

As already described, the question words - as in German - on Beginning the question. We have formulated example sentences for you for all of the question words already presented:

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  • Where is my jacket? (Where is my jacket?)
  • Who is Jasper calling? (Whom calls Jasper?) [ask about the object]
  • What are you doing? (What are you doing?) [ask about the object]
  • When what the French Revolution? (When was the French Revolution?)
  • Why didn't you call me? (Why didn't you call me?)
  • Whose pen is this? (Whose Pen is that?)
  • Which ticket do I need to get to London? (Which one Do I need a ticket to go to London?)
  • How did you repair the television? (How did you fix the TV?)

Most of the question words are followed by the verb. Exceptions are which and whose, because they need a related noun.

  • At who and what you have to pay attention to whether after the subject or object is asked, because both are possible.
  • Who and which are question words that you use when you search for the subject ask. However, they can also be used if after a object is asked.
  • Where, when, why and how serve for this after Place, the Time, the reason and the How to ask.
  • Whose you can use it if you are after the possession want to ask or want to know who owns something.
  • Which do you use in conjunction with a nounif you want to determine exactly which noun of this type is meant.
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Subject and object


Thesubject is always that person or the Thing, which carries out the action in the sentence. You ask who or what, in English withwho orwhat. Each sentence needs a subject. In declarative sentences, the subject is usually at the beginning of the sentence.


An object is a sentence completion. A distinction is made between a direct and an indirect object. A indirect object is mostly one Person, a direct object mostly one Thing. The indirect object is often the receiver this case. Take a look at the example for clarification: Laura gives him a book.You see here that the person (indirect object; him) which the thing (direct object; a book) receives.

Who and where are often confused

One difficulty that German learners have problems with is the question words whoand where. Because of its appearance, it is often suspected that whoWhere is called and where who. But that is exactly the other way around. Where always means Where and who means, when asked about the subject,who. So you have to be extra careful here!

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Risk of confusion with who and where

Whoandwhereare often confused when translating and using. Remember that wherealways Wheremeans and whowho or whom.

You now have the English question words got to know and know their translations and properties. When solving our exercises, you can check your knowledge directly. Have fun and success!

Your team of authors for English: Lena Bauckhage and Katrin Schulmann

This learning page is part of an online interactive course on English. The English team will explain everything you need to know about your English lessons!

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