Are all these sentences grammatically correct? Which ones are more common?

"I'm not sure what's true love" vs. "I'm not sure what true love is"

"I don't know who's your brother" vs. "I don't know who your brother is"

"The problem is who can we get to replace her" vs. "The problem is who we can get to replace her"

I know as a general rule, we shouldn't use question word order in indirect sentences (e.g. "*He didn't know where was I going" is obviously wrong.) But there is also this example that is definitely correct in this way: "I'm not sure who is in charge." while I think it would be wrong to say: "I'm not sure who in charge is."

I don't know how to explain this. I also have no idea about the first three sentences!

  • You have two separate questions. The one about replacing her has nothing to do with your other examples. Please try to edit your question to include only one confusion. Jun 15, 2015 at 10:18

1 Answer 1


1 - What is true love? - Here we have an independent question. Independent questions have either inversion or the question auxiliary to do.

2 - I don't know what true love is. - This is a subordinated question and they have normal word order, subject, verb. No inversion or question auxiliary to do.

  • Thank you. Did you read the rest of my question? Do you also think that "The problem is who we can get to replace her" and "I'm not sure who in charge is." are correct as well for being subordinated questions?
    – Masoud
    Jun 15, 2015 at 8:31
  • It is cumbersome to answer more than one question. I would advise to ask a new question.
    – rogermue
    Jun 15, 2015 at 9:06

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