When should a question begin with “what” as opposed to “which”?

Answer by Will Wister:

“Which” is preferred when you have a very limited number of known choices.

  • Which arm is stronger?
  • Which of your siblings do you like best?

“What” is preferred when you have a large number of choices or you don’t even know how many choices there are.

  • What color do you like best?
  • What is the best company that does X?
  • What was the most impressive empire of all time?

Here are some references that back this up:

[1] http://www.pearsonlongman.com/ae…
[2] http://www.englishpractice.com/g…
[3] http://www.english-test.net/foru…
[4] http://learnenglish.britishcounc…
[5] http://www.knoxnews.com/news/200…
[6] http://www.blurtit.com/q870947.html
[7] http://www.differencebetween.com…

When should a question begin with “what” as opposed to “which”?

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