Who What Where When Why How

Today we’re going through the question words, as the title suggests.

Who = مَن (man); “Who is it?” = مَن هُوَ؟ (man huwa).

What = ما (mā); “What is it?” = ما هُوَ؟ (mā huwa). Note that this is Modern Standard Arabic. I can’t speak to colloquial Arabic except in my limited personal experience, so I can say that you’ll encounter شو (shū) instead of mā, heavily in Lebanon but also frequently in other places.

Where = أينَ (ayna); “Where is it?” = أينَ هُوَ؟ (ayna huwa).

When = مَتى (matá) or عِندَما (ʿindamā); “When are you going?” = مَتى تَذْهَب؟ (matá tadhhab).

Why = لِماذا (limādhā); “Why are you going?” = لِماذا تَذْهَب؟ (limādhā tadhhab).

How = كَيف (kayf); “How are you?” = كَيف حالُكُم (kayf hālukum).