“who is he” or “who he is”, which one is appropriate?

“who is he” or “who he is”, which one is appropriate?

2 Answers

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  1. This question seems to require a lot of context to answer. But a good way to answer this question is “Who is he?” is a who-question. It wants to know the identity of a particular person. It is often used when the identity of the person is not known at the time of the question.

    In contrast, “Who he is” is a which-question. It wants to know more about the person. It’s a question of qualities, for example: “What kind of person is he?” or “What does he do?”

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  3. The question “Who is he?” would correctly be answered by “He is John” (Who is = he is), while the question “Who he is?” would correctly be answered by “He is a friend” (Who he is = he is a friend). The rule is that “who” is used for people and “whom” for objects.

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