What vs Which

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What’s the difference between them?

What

Meaning:

What is used as an interrogative pronoun to ask for information about something.

Examples:

1. What do you think of this outfit?

2. What time does the movie start?

3. What do you want for dinner?

Which

Meaning:

Which is a pronoun used to ask a question about a particular thing or things from a group or a selection of items.

Examples:

1. Which of the two items do you prefer?

2. Which way should we go?

3. Which flavor ice cream do you want?

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Synonyms

Antonyms

What

There are no direct synonyms for this word.

There are no direct antonyms for this word.

Which

There are no direct synonyms for this word.

There are no direct antonyms for this word.

Tricks for mastery

Useful tips to understand the difference between confusing words "What", "Which".

What and which are both interrogative pronouns used to ask questions. The key difference between them is that what is used to ask about a general subject or idea, while which is used to ask for a specific item or person from a group.

A mnemonic phrase to help remember the difference between them is 'What's the whole thing? Which one do you choose?'.

The use of what and which is the same in both American and British English. However, there are some spelling differences. In American English, what is usually spelled with a double T (e.g. What), while in British English, it is usually spelled with a single T (e.g. WhaT).

The correct spelling of which is the same in both American and British English. It is important to note that which is commonly misspelled as witch. To remember the correct spelling, a useful tip is to remember that a witch begins with a W, and that which begins with a Wh.

Check the full list of commonly confused words in English

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Frequently asked questions

In what situations should the word 'which' be used?

The word 'which' is typically used to ask for additional information or clarification in a sentence. For example, 'Which type of cake would you like for breakfast?' or 'Which colour do you think would look best on the wall?'

When is the appropriate context for using the word 'what'?

The word 'what' is most commonly used to ask questions in order to gain information. For example, 'What type of cake would you like for breakfast?' or 'What colour do you think would look best on the wall?'

Do the words 'what' and 'which' share the same pronunciation?

No, 'what' and 'which' do not share the same pronunciation. The word 'what' is pronounced as /wɑːt/, while 'which' is pronounced as /wɪtʃ/.

What are some common mistakes people make when using these words?

One mistake people make when using these words is mixing up the usage. Many people tend to use 'what' when they should use 'which', or vice vers

Fill in the gaps to check yourself

1. _____ of the two restaurants do you prefer?

2. Im not sure _____ to choose as my major.

3. _____ color do you think would look best for the walls?

4. _____ books do you like to read?

5. Do you know _____ type of car he drives?

6. Do you have any idea _____ we should do tonight?

1. Which

Explanation: The word which should be used here to present two options and ask which of them is preferred.

2. What

Explanation: The word what should be used here to ask about the specific choice that needs to be made.

3. Which

Explanation: The word which should be used here to ask about the specific color that should be chosen.

4. What

Explanation: The word what should be used here to ask about the specific type of books that are liked.

5. Which

Explanation: The word which should be used here to ask about the specific type of car that is being driven.

6. What

Explanation: The word what should be used here to ask about the specific activity that should be done.

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List of Commonly Confused Words

Finding your way around the English language can be hard, especially since there are so many confusing words and rules. So, a list of the most confusing words in English is an extremely useful tool for improving language accuracy and sharing the ideas clearly.