Who What Where When Why How

Today we’re going over the question words: who, what, where, when, why, and how.

Who = که (kah, pronounced “ke”); can become کی () for purposes of elision, as in کیست (kīst), combining که and است (ast, meaning “is”) into “Who is it?” (که is also a particle meaning something like “that,” used frequently to mark relative clauses, but if we ever get into that kind of thing it will be much later)

What = چه (chah, “che”); similar to the above can become چی (chī), as in چیست (chīst), “What is it?”

Where = کُجا (kujā, “ko-jaa”); “Where is it?” = کُجاست؟ (kujāst), “Where are you going?” = کُجا می رَوی؟ (kujā mī ravī). Another translation of “where” is جائی که (jāʾī kah) but it is not used in questions, only for clauses (as in, for example, “the place WHERE something happened”), so we’ll encounter it later.

When = کَی (kay), not to be confused with the second form of “who,” کی (), shown above; “When are you going?” = کَی می رَوی؟ (kay mī ravī). As with “where,” Persian uses a different translation for “when” as a clause (“the time WHEN something happened”), which is وَقتی که.

Why = چِرا (chirā, “che-raa”); “Why are you going?” = چِرا می رَوی؟ (chirā mī ravī).

How = چِطَور (chiṭawr, “che-tor”); “How are you?” = حالِ شُما چِطَور است؟ (hāl-i shumā chiṭawr ast).

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One thought on “Who What Where When Why How

  1. Pingback: Medicine: پزشکی | Persian Word a Day

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