• Dutch
  • Frisian
  • Saterfrisian
  • Afrikaans
Show all

An interrogative possessor is placed in the first position of the clause together with the Noun Phrase (NP) of which it is a part:

Wa syn byld is dat?
who his image is that
Whose image is that?

Such sentences almost always involve the verb wêze to be or a copular verb of location such as stean to stand, sitte to sit, lizze to lie or hingje to hang.


Written Frisian regularly features the genitival form waans whose, which is obsolete in spoken language:

Waans gefoelens wurde befredige?
whose feelings are satisfied
Whose feelings are satisfied?

For some reason, interrogative possessors seem to be rare in the Frisian Language Corpus. Furthermore, possessors, whether they are interrogative or not, cannot be <-person>:

a. *Wat syn byld is dat?
what his image is that
What is that an image of?
b. *Ljouwert syn bylden binne dat
Ljouwert his images are that
Those are images of Ljouwert

In order to express the meaning of the previous sentence, an Adposition Phrase (PP) must be used:

Bylden fan Ljouwert binne dat
images of Ljouwert are that
Those are images of Ljouwert

A question is formed with the aid of the <-human> interrogative R-pronoun:

Wêr binne dat bylden fan?
what.R are that images of
What are those images of?

Although the Frisian Language Corpus does not feature any instances of this, the fronted NP containing an interrogative possessor can be followed by the complementiser oft.

Hy wit wa syn broer oft it wie
he knows who his brother COMP it was
He knows whose brother it was
    printreport errorcite