German interrogative pronouns
What are interrogative pronouns?
Interrogative pronouns are used to ask for someone or something. They replace the noun, that is referred to in the question.
List of interrogative pronouns
|Wie viel?||How much?||
|Wie viele?||How many?||
The interrogative pronouns stand in the same case as the noun, that the question refers to.
The German pronouns Wer and Was?
With "Wer?" you ask for persons and with "Was?" for things. There is no distinction for gender or singular and plural.
- Wer ist das? (Person) - Who is that? (person)
- Was ist das? (Sache) - What is that? (thing)
The interrogative pronoun "Wer?" changes according to which case the referred to noun is in.
'Welcher?' vs. 'Was für...?'
The German pronouns Welcher, Welche, Welches?
The interrogative pronouns "welcher", "welche" und "welches" are used, when we ask for a part of a variety of various persons or things. In English they are always translated with "Which".
The interrogative pronoun 'welcher/welche/welches' also has do be declined according to the case of the noun they ask for:
- Welchen Fußballverein unterstützt du? - Which football club do you support?
- Welchem Kind gehört dieser Rucksack? - To which child does this backpack belong?
The question "Was für ein/e"?
The question "Was für eine/e?" ("What kind of?") is used, when you ask for a characteristic of a person or thing.
- Was für ein Buch hast du gelesen? - What kind of book did you read?
- Was für eine Tapete willst du kaufen? - What kind of wallpaper do you want to buy?
- Was für ein Getränk hast du bestellt? - What kind of beverage did you order?
Question about quantity in German ('Wie viele?' vs. 'Wie viel?')
To ask about quantity we have the same distinction as in English.
|Wie viele?||Wie viel?|
|Usage||for countable amounts (how many?)||for uncountable amounts (how much?)|
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