Ways To Say Who In French

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Written By Jessica Knight

Founder of Linguatics. Passionate multilinguist.

Are you learning French and struggling to express the concept of ‘who’ in the language? Look no further! This article will provide you with a comprehensive guide on the various ways to say ‘who’ in French.

From the basic pronoun ‘qui’ to the specific expressions ‘lequel’ and ‘laquelle,’ you will learn how to navigate the intricacies of using these words in different contexts.

Whether you want to ask a question, use a preposition, or indicate possession or relationship, we have got you covered.

Additionally, we will explore how to use the expressions ‘dont’ and ‘où’ to refer to possession, relationships, places, and times.

By avoiding common mistakes, you will gain confidence in your ability to accurately convey the concept of ‘who’ in French.

So let’s dive in and expand your French language skills together!

Basic Pronoun ‘Qui’

Want to learn a simple way to say ‘who’ in French? Well, you’re in luck because we’re about to dive into the basic pronoun ‘qui’!

In French, ‘qui’ is used to refer to people and is equivalent to ‘who’ or ‘whom’ in English. It is used as a subject or an object in a sentence.

For example, ‘Qui est-ce?’ means ‘Who is it?’ and ‘La personne qui parle’ means ‘The person who is speaking.’

‘Qui’ is a fundamental pronoun that is essential to mastering French conversation.

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Using ‘Qui’ in Questions

Imagine yourself in a lively conversation, eagerly asking, ‘Who are you?’ In French, you would use the pronoun ‘qui’ to ask this question. For example, you might say, ‘Qui es-tu?’ This translates to ‘Who are you?’

‘Qui’ is used to inquire about a person’s identity or occupation. It is a versatile pronoun that can be used in various contexts to ask about someone’s name, role, or background.

Using ‘Qui’ with Prepositions

The detective asked the suspect, ‘Qui est le coupable?’

In French, ‘qui’ is used to ask about the identity of a person. When combined with prepositions, ‘qui’ changes to ‘à qui’ (to whom), ‘de qui’ (from whom), and ‘pour qui’ (for whom). These prepositional phrases help specify the relationship between the subject and the person being referred to.

For example:

  • ‘À qui est cette lettre?’ (To whom is this letter?)
  • ‘De qui est-ce la voiture?’ (Whose car is this?)

These constructions with ‘qui’ and prepositions allow for more precise and specific questions about the person involved.

Specific Expressions: ‘Lequel’ and ‘Laquelle’

‘Lequel’ and ‘laquelle’ are specific expressions used in French to ask about a particular person or thing. They are used when there are multiple options or choices and you want to specify which one you are referring to.

‘Lequel’ is used for masculine nouns and ‘laquelle’ is used for feminine nouns. These expressions are often followed by a preposition to indicate the context or location of the person or thing being referred to.

Using ‘Lequel’ and ‘Laquelle’ in Questions

Hey there! Have you ever wondered how to use ‘lequel’ and ‘laquelle’ in questions? It’s a super useful way to ask about a specific person or thing when there are multiple options.

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Plus, it’s a great way to show off your French skills! When using ‘lequel’ and ‘laquelle’, you need to match them with the gender and number of the noun they refer to.

So, next time you want to ask ‘Which one?’ in French, remember to use ‘lequel’ or ‘laquelle’!

Using ‘Lequel’ and ‘Laquelle’ with Prepositions

Now that you understand how to use ‘Lequel’ and ‘Laquelle’ in questions, let’s dive deeper into their usage with prepositions. This is crucial because prepositions play a significant role in French sentences.

By combining ‘Lequel’ or ‘Laquelle’ with prepositions, you can specify the person or thing you are referring to. This will enable you to communicate more accurately and effectively in French conversations.

Other Expressions: ‘Dont’ and ‘Où’

In our everyday conversations, we often come across expressions like ‘dont’ and ‘où’ that add depth and nuance to our sentences.

‘Dont’ is used to indicate possession or relation and can be translated to ‘whose’ or ‘of which’. For example, ‘Le livre dont je parle’ means ‘The book that I am talking about’.

On the other hand, ‘où’ is used to indicate location or time and can be translated to ‘where’ or ‘when’. For example, ‘Le restaurant où nous sommes allés’ means ‘The restaurant where we went’.

These expressions are essential in conveying specific information and expanding our vocabulary in French.

Using ‘Dont’ to Indicate Possession or Relationship

You can improve your grasp of French grammar by using contractions to convey a richer meaning when discussing the use of ‘dont’ to indicate possession or relationship.

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Contractions, like ‘duquel’ or ‘auquel,’ are formed by combining the preposition ‘de’ or ‘à’ with the relative pronoun ‘lequel.’

These contractions allow for a more precise and concise expression, making your French sentences more fluent and natural.

Using ‘Où’ to Refer to a Place or Time

In French, the contraction ‘où’ can be used to refer to a specific place or time. This allows you to express precise information about a location or a moment.

For example, you can use ‘où’ when asking someone where they are going or when an event took place. It is important to use the correct form of ‘où’ depending on the gender and number of the noun it refers to.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Avoid these common mistakes when using contractions in French to ensure clear and accurate communication.

Remember to always use the correct contraction for the specific word or phrase.

Be careful not to confuse contractions with possessive pronouns or other grammatical elements.

Double check your spelling and pronunciation to avoid any misunderstandings.

Practice using contractions in different contexts to become more comfortable and fluent in your French conversations.


In conclusion, learning how to properly use the pronouns ‘qui’, ‘lequel’, ‘laquelle’, ‘dont’, and ‘où’ in French is essential for effective communication. By understanding the different contexts in which these pronouns are used, you will be able to express yourself clearly and accurately.

Avoiding common mistakes will help you sound more fluent and natural in your French conversations. Practice using these pronouns in various sentences and situations to improve your language skills and enhance your overall understanding of the French language.

Keep learning and exploring the intricacies of French grammar to become a proficient French speaker.

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