I asked about this previously and I am still confused.
I did a quiz before and it asked how you would ask "what is this" or something to that effect. And it didn't accept "quelle est..." as the correct answer.
The answer I had received is that quelle needs to be followed by a noun. However, previously, my French teachers would say questions like "Quelle est la date?", so I was very confused. Is that phrase incorrect?
Furthermore, I was doing another quiz and got this question:
Quel est le nom ___ restaurant ?
And I was confused why you could ask "what is the name of the restaurant" and use "quel est" and not "qu'est-ce que c'est" or "c'est quoi".
Basically, I'm not understanding if/when you can use "quel est.." or "quelle est..".
If you were told that it had to be followed by a noun, that was incorrect. However there will always be a noun associated with it.
It will sometimes be translated into English as "what", but the underlying meaning is "which". For example, "Quelle est la date?" is a bit like saying "which date is it?". Or "Quel est ton film préféré?" means "which film is your favourite?"
The answer to the question will be a date or the name of a film, it won't be a definition.
I see your problem as understanding the difference between Interrogative pronouns and interrogative adjectives.
1) Interrogative pronouns -- referring to people "qui est-ce qui arrive ?" --> Who is coming.
-- referring to things "qu'est-ce qui arrive " --> What is happening.
2) Interrogative adjectives -- "Je me demande à quel quai il va arriver ?" --> I wonder which (what) platform it will arrive at?
-- "Avec quelle main l'as-tu fait ?" --> Which hand did you do it with?
So I recommend that you revisit both types of interrogative pronoun/adjective lessons and find the key to your confusion.
Have you tried reading this lesson?
Quel/quels/quelle/quelles ? = Which/what? (French Question Words)
I think what is throwing me off is that it needed to be followed by a noun immediately after when I could see several examples where it is not being followed by a noun.
I reviewed the lesson you linked but honestly, I'm still having trouble determining when "c'est quoi" or "qu'est-ce que c'est" is appropriate and when "quelle/quel est.." is.
Am I understanding this correctly? You ask "c'est quoi" or "qu'est-ce que c'est" when you want something explicitly defined, like you don't know what the object is. Whereas "quelle/quel est" is if you know what it is, but you are asking about it in context?
I hope that is correct. It was helpful to provide the links but I would sincerely appreciate an explanation as I'm not understanding the concept itself.
I meant the answer to my general question on the forum, not the question itself :P
However, your answer helped me a lot! Thank you so much. I think I was making a mistake in trying to directly translate from English too much.
Thank you again!!
Sign in to submit your answer
Don't have an account yet? Join today
Test your French to the CEFR standard