Questions 5

Previous: Questions 4

what about

You can use the phrase what about for making suggestions. After this phrase you normally use verb-ing or a noun.

What about spending the night here? – A może by tutaj zatrzymać się na noc?

What about a cup of coffee? – Co powiesz na filiżankę kawy?

What about Tuesday? OK? – Może we wtorek, dobrze?

what’s what

To know what’s what. – Znać się na rzeczy.

This is my assistant, he’ll tell you what’s what. – To mój asystent, powie ci, co i jak.

He’s hopeless, he’s got no idea what’s what. – On jest beznadziejny, o niczym nie ma zielonego pojęcia.

how come

You can use the phrase how come in the same way as the question why. After this phrase you use a clause, a part of a sentence with a subject and a verb.

How come you always get the best place/arrive first? – jak to jest/jak to się dzieje, że zawsze dostajesz najlepsze miejsce/przyjeżdżasz pierwszy?

How come you don’t like him? – Dlaczego go nie lubisz?

how much

You use how much to ask about uncountable nouns, like money and time.

How much time/money is (there) left? – Ile jeszcze zostało czasu/pieniędzy?

How much (money) does it cost? / How much is it? – Ile to kosztuje?

How much do you weigh? – Ile ważysz?

how many

You use how many to ask about countable nouns

How many times have you been to England? – Ile razy byłeś w Anglii?

How many years have you lived here? – Ile lat tu mieszkasz? / Od ilu lat tu mieszkasz?

I don’t know how many people will come. – Nie wiem, ile osób przyjdzie.

How many kilograms/kilogrammes do you weigh? – Ile kilogramów ważysz?

what and how

What do you do? – czym się zajmujesz?

What do you do on Saturdays/at work? – Co robisz w soboty/w pracy?

What are you doing? – co robisz (w tej chwili)?

How do you do? – Miło mi Cię/Pana/Panią/Państwa poznać.

How are you (doing)? – Jak się masz? / Jak się czujesz?

How do you feel? – Jak się czujesz?

How do you feel about it? – Co o tym myślisz?

How is everything? / How are things? – Co słychać? /  Jak leci?

Questions 3

Previous: Questions 2

What

In English, what is normally used to ask questions about nouns (rzeczowniki), and is often similar to co in Polish. However, English doesn’t have words which mean jaki, jaka, etc, and we therefore use what in many situations where in Polish you would use jaki, jaka, etc.

For example. look at the following sentences:

What book are you reading? – Jaką książkę czytasz?

What is his name? – Jak on ma na imię?

What colour are the walls? – Jakiego koloru są ściany?

The words book , name and colour are all nouns so we use what to ask questions about them.

We sometimes want to ask a question about an adjective (przymiotnik) and in this situation we normally use which.

In the next examples, colour is a noun, so we use what, and green is an adjective, so we use which.

What colour are the walls? – Jakiego koloru są ściany?

Which green are you going to use to paint the walls? – Którego zielonego koloru zamierzasz użyć do pomalowania tej ściany?

What and Which

We also normally use what when there are many possible options available, and we use which when there is a limited number of options available.

Many options available

What is her telephone number? – Jaki jest jej numer telefonu?

Limited options available

Which telephone number is hers, 536850 or 567899? – Który numer telefonu jest jej, 536850 czy 567899?

Which of these is yours? – Który z tych należy do ciebie?

Which is also normally used to ask questions about organizations or groups of people.

Which organizations do you support? – Którą organizację wspierasz?

Which football club do you like the most? – Jaki klub piłkarski lubisz najbardziej?

Although these different ways of using which is how we normally use the word, it isn’t a strict rule and you will sometimes see what used instead.

Next: Questions 4