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"Which vegetable is yellow?"

Translation:무슨 야채가 노래요?

September 25, 2017



Back in an earlier lesson (Formal Moods), Duolingo teaches us that "어느" translates to "which" and "무슨" translates to "what _." Here, for some reason the expected answer uses 무슨 and 어느 is marked incorrect.

If you want me to use 무슨, shouldn't the question be: "What vegetable is yellow?" Otherwise shouldn't 어느 also be accepted for consistency?

Inconsistencies in the Korean lessons on Duolingo are killing my motivation.


I was wondering the same thing, and according to Papago, "which" translates to "어떤", but I remember Duolingo explaining "which" to be " 어느" as well.


so 니다 can never work as a question, 까 is always a question and 요 can be both?


Yes. Just doesn't confuse the ending ㅂ니까? with the other particle 니까 which is used after verbs to say "since" or "because."


가? = informal low 가요? = informal high 가니? = formal low 갑니까? = formal high

I recommend you dongsa.net to check Korean conjugations.


When translating in English there is obviously something that does not work unless it is another inconsistensy in Duolinguo... which can also be the case actually.

So I though asking the question on another way: Anyone knows how/when we should use 어느 and 무슨 in Korean? Is there any difference/specific use?


Question words are not easy. This is from the notes and some comments I found here and there through the exercises. Hope this helps a little.

Questions Words Unlike in English, word order does not have to change when asking a question. Question words can simply go into the sentence where the word they replace would have been. Just like declarative (or any other) sentences, it is possible to move the question words for emphasis.

언제 when

어디 where Unlike English, 어디 is not an adverb itself, but a pronoun. Thus it is often used with 에 or 에서.

누구 who 누구 and 가 (subject particle) are usually contracted to 누가in spoken language.

무엇 what (pronoun) 무엇 is often contracted to 뭐in spoken language. As 를 is also often contracted to ㄹ, you may say 뭘 for 무엇을.

무슨 what (determiner) As in "what animal" or "what country"; 무슨 is sometimes contracted to 뭔 in spoken language.

어떤 what kind of 어떤 replaces an adjective.

어느 which

어떻게 how Formed from 어떻다 meaning to be how

왜 why

See Ash-Fred's comment here: Korean has too many confusing whats, so here you go:

[Declarative] [Interrogative] ― ―

저는 빵이 좋아요. 무엇이 좋아요?

I like bread. What do you like? ― ―

저는 크루아상이 좋아요. 무슨 빵이 좋아요?

I like croissant. What bread do you like? ― ―

저는 큰 빵이 좋아요. 어떤 빵이 좋아요?

I like big bread. What (kind of) bread do you like? ― ―

저는 이 빵이 좋아요. 어느 빵이 좋아요?

I like this bread. Which bread do you like? ― ―

무엇 is a pronoun, 무슨 is a determiner (a replacement of 무엇 where the category is specified), and 어떤 is an adjective. Since "I like croissant." could also be an answer to "Which food is delicious?", both what and which are accepted here, but please keep in mind there's a slight difference. For those who say "what food" sounds weird, there is no better translation. Which is too specific, and what kind of is too loose (though we chose to accept all of them). "어떤 스마트폰이 좋아요?" asks what qualities you look for in smartphones while "무슨 스마트폰이 좋아요?" asks what model(s) you like. What kind of is not for the latter. "What food" in this sense shouldn't sound weird.

Personally, I like the hot chicken flavour ramen or 불닭볶음면 though I wish it was spicier. ;)

Q: Where to put the question words?

A: 어느, 무슨, 어떤 which, what, what sort of come before a noun like adjectives

어디, 무엇, 누구 where, what, who act as the noun itself

왜, 어떻게 why, how act as adverbs, modifying everything in front of them, so they might be in different parts of a sentence


thanks a lot for summing it up!


But I've heard the particle 니까 used as a command. As in "닥쳐라니까" (shut up!).


My impression is

무엇은 = 뭣은 = 뭐슨 => 무슨 = adjective of what = what (kind of) + noun -> categorization

What vegs are yellow? The ones rich in carotenoids

어떻다 / 어떠하다 (descriptive verb) = be how => 어떤  / 어떠한 (abdominal adj) = which (kind of) + noun -> selection

Which vegs are yellow? - sweet corns; squash; yellow peppers; pumpkins ...

어느 = indefinite article "a"; one => (As interrogative adj) = which one of -> option

Which one of the vegs available in tins are yellow? - sweet corn.

In colloquial English however "what" and "which" tend to be used interchangeably. "What" is generally preferred and "which" is used to stress specific choices.

What buses = Which bus numbers

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