Italian question words include both interrogative adjectives and pronouns; this post deals only with Italian interrogative pronouns CHI and CHE COSA. Interrogatives are pronouns when they substitute or imply a noun.
Here are some examples of Italian interrogative pronouns CHI and CHE COSA.
1) Chi ha mangiato il pesce ieri? (“Who ate the fish yesterday?”)
2) Chi vuole andare ad Amsterdam? (“Who wants to go to Amsterdam?”)
3) Chi ha inventato la radio? (“Who invented the radio?”)
4) Che cosa hai visto in Svezia? (“What did you see in Sweden?”)
5) Che cosa ha detto la tua amica? (“What did your friend say?”)
6) Che cosa vuoi sapere? (“What do you want to know?”)
Che cosa is used to ask questions about things; Chi is used to ask questions about people.
Italian question words Chi and Che cosa are actually invariable, this means that they never change regardless of number and gender of the following nouns.
It’s very common in the Italian language to substitute che cosa with only che or cosa:
1) Cosa vuole? (“What does he/she want?”)
2) Che ha detto? (“What did he/she say?”)
3) Che fai? (“What are you doing?”)
4) Cosa ne pensi? (“What do you think about it?”)
Practise Italian question words CHI and CHE COSA with our free exercise: