1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Greek
  4. >
  5. "Whose is this dress?"

"Whose is this dress?"

Translation:Ποιανής είναι αυτό το φόρεμα;

October 3, 2016



when should I use ποιανής and when ποιανού? The last 2 questions I got where neuter nouns as well, yet ποιανού was used.

  • 164

Ποιανού is used when the owner is male or of unknown gender. Ποιανής is used when you are asking who is the owner and you are sure that the owner is female. Ποιανής is used in the above sentence because it talks about a dress, so the owner must be female.


Thanks! I was going the wrong direction and inflecting according to the wrong element in the sentence. You clarified the issue for me.


I'm offended. Why do you assume that a man can't wear a dress?


To answer my own question, here is a good discussion about it. https://www.duolingo.com/comment/17572443

"Dimitris" said:

"Ποιανού (=whose) 1) refers to a masculine owner (Ποιανού είναι το βιβλίο; -Του Γιάννη) 2) used when you don't know the owner's gender (Ποιανού είναι το σπίτι; -Της μητέρας μου. -Του πατέρα μου.)  Ποιανής (=whose) refers to a feminine owner, when all possible owners are feminine (Κορίτσια, ποιανής είναι αυτό το σουτιέν; -Της Χρύσας)"


Instead of ποιανού/ής you can use the pronoun "τίνος" in all genders, without harm. Ποιανού/ποιανής are a bit informal. In formal cases it is more right to use the pronoun "ποιού" (masc. and neutr.), ποιάς (fem.)


"Ποιανής είναι το φόρεμα αυτό" isn't accepted. Does it sound ok in Greek or is it unnatural?


Ποιανής είναι αυτό το φόρεμα; Is identical to Ποιανής είναι το φόρεμα αυτό; Isnt it? But the second one is wrong in the app...


It's been added, thank you for your comment!


Why does it give ποιανής for καφές then?


Because the owner could be a female as well. Doesn't have to do with "coffee".


Since you're asking a question, shouldn't it be Whose dress is this?


Both "whose is this dress?" and "whose dress is this?" are fine in English.


Is there any opt. To reply me Duolingo?


Could you please rephrase your question?


Why isn't it , αυτή τη φόρεμα?


φόρεμα is a neuter noun. In fact, nearly every noun ending in -μα is neuter.

(A couple of exceptions are η φάρμα and η φόρμα - both of which are loan-words, though φόρμα comes from Italian 'forma' which supposedly came (via Etruscan then Latin) from Ancient Greek μορφή.)


Why no one talks about plural question? Is it rare to use ποιανών ?

  • 164

It's not rare to use ποιανών, but in this sentence we are talking about one dress, so it's highly unlikely that it belongs to more than one person (at least that's how language usage sees it - it's unlikely that someone will say ποιανών when taking about one dress). In a sentence like "whose are those dresses?", "ποιανών είναι αυτά τα φορέματα " is fine and used. :)


in my opinion the answer "ποιου είναι το φόρεμα" should be accepted. For example it could mean that it is the husbnads dress who bought it for her wife. Please correct me if I am mistaken


This scenario has been taken into account, but with another form of the word (Ποιανού). Ποιου is also correct and has now been added.

Learn Greek in just 5 minutes a day. For free.