The question is about the rule of asking questions in Past Simple tense. Please, look at the questions below and tell me if my thinking and naming of questions stated here are correct?

For example affirmative sentence would be:

  • You broke it!

and the object question would be:

  • What did I break?

the subject question would be:

  • Who broke it?

The other example of affirmative question:

  • They took her home.

Object question:

  • Where did they take her?

Subject question:

  • Who they took home?

And the main doubt about the above is: Where should one use "did" form and where past form of a verb alone. I've read somewhere that "did" should be always used when in affirmative sentence "did" or "do" is used. I also read somewhere that when we form subject question its past form of a verb alone (without operative) should be used.

How would the subject and object questions might look like in Past Simple tense. The main question is about the rule to use "did" or verb alone in the sentence. I am little confused with all above and the next sentence.


They talked to this guy yesterday.



Are there any other possibilities to use "did" in the questions in addition to mentioned above if they are correct?

  • The "who they took home?" is wrong. It is not a subject question.
    – James K
    Commented Aug 19, 2021 at 23:15

1 Answer 1


An open question is one that has many possible answers: subject or object questions are examples of this, as the there are multiple possibilities.

A closed question requires a yes or no answer.

Closed questions in the past simple are usually asked using **did*.

Did you break it?

I hadn't thought about it before, but I think that you have identified a pattern, in that we also use did for object questions, presumably so that the object pronoun can be moved to the start of the sentence.

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