Difference Between Who and Whose

Main Difference – Who vs Whose 

Both “who” and “whose” are pronouns that confuse many people as they find it difficult to make correct usage of the words in English language. Both these pronouns are used to refer to humans and human possessions. If we look at the grammatical forms of these two words, “Who” can be used as a relative pronoun and an interrogative pronoun while “whose” is the possessive form of “who”. In this article, we are going to discuss the difference between who and whose by analyzing their meaning and usage.

Who – Meaning and Usage

We use “who” to ask which person performs an action or behaves in a certain manner. Here, “who” is used as an Interrogative pronoun.

Who would have thought that cute little girl is capable of murder?”

Who told you to help them?”

Who sings the chorus of that song?”

Who baked this wonderful cake?”

When “who” is used as an interrogative pronoun, it always refers to the subject of the sentence. 

“Who” is also used as a relative pronoun. Here, “who” is used to introduce a clause, giving further information about a person or people formerly mentioned. Here, it also combines two clauses.

“He was the person who helped me to get out of jail.”

“I know the French actor who acted in this horror movie.”

“They are the ones who attacked us first, it wasn’t our fault.”

“She doesn’t know who owns that house, but she is in good terms with the house sitter.”

who vs whose

Who is that woman over there?

Whose – Meaning and Usage

Whose is the possessive form of “who” and is used to form interrogative, Possessive determiner, pronoun, and relative possessive pronouns.

“Whose” can be used in forming questions. We use “whose” to find out to which person something belongs to. For example,

Whose car is parked in our garage?”

Whose dog is barking outside?”

Whose purse have you stolen today?”

“Under whose orders did you imprison these innocent people?”

Whose is also used in forming indirect questions and adjective clauses.

“It’s time for you to decide whose side you’re on, your parents’ or your wife’s.”

“He wasn’t sure whose house was destroyed in the fire.”

“He is a wise man  whose ideas I greatly value.”

Many people make the mistake of confusing whose with who’s. Who’s is the contraction of who is and should not be confused with whose as they mean different things.

difference between who and whose

Whose bag is this?

Difference Between Who and Whose


Who is a pronoun.

Whose is the possessive form of who.


Who can be used as an interrogative pronoun or relative pronoun.

Whose can be used as interrogative, possessive determiner, interrogative possessive pronoun and relative possessive pronoun.


Who refers to a person.

Whose refers to an object or quality that belongs to a person.


Who refers to the subject of a sentence.

Whose refers to the object of the sentence.

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