Is it the same thing?

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  • kalyson

    USA English
    You could say:

    "Do you know what that means?"

    "Do you know what it means?"

    "Do they know what it means?"

    "Do we know what that means?" ("it" or "that" -- either one is ok.)


    Senior Member
    German, Germany
    You can't, you have to say: 'What does 'apple' mean'?

    The reason is:
    If you want to form a question or negate a statement, you have to use 'to do' together with the verb, e.g. to eat, to live, to consider .... (The only exception is 'to be'.)

    Where do you live?
    What does he eat for breakfast?
    He doesn't eat bread.
    They don't love their children.
    Exception: Where is he? ('to do' not necessary)

    I suppose English people 'want' their real verb to be after the subject - even in questions- , so they put a form of 'to do' before the subject.

    In your sentence 'apple' is the subject; 'what' is not the subject.

    I hope that has helped you a bit and not confused you.


    Senior Member
    German, Germany
    And another thing:

    When you use 'to do', the 'real' verb after it is in the infinitive - so you don't use an -s in the third person singular. In a way, you've got the -s already in 'does'!
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