I know that one can say "I did take the money" in order to stress the action. For instance, "You didn't take the money, did you?" - "I did take the money! I told you already so many times."

But when is it allowed in who-questions, e.g. "Who did take the money?"

  • Makes perfect sense. But are there any other situations where "Who did take the money?" is justified? – Yauhen Yakimenka Mar 27 '18 at 19:28

Bruce: The money was stolen, you tell me, John. Well, I don't think Molly took it.

John: But then, who did take it then?

John: But then, who took it?

Summary: In John's question who did take it is used instead of who took it. The use of did take is used to emphasize the fact it was taken.

The implicit suggestion is that previously in a conversation someone has said that some person did not take it. It is a way of being more emphatic.

Do can also be used for emphasis: If you don't do laundry for us here, who does do it?


But when is it allowed in who-questions, e.g. "Who did take the money?"

Implicit in the example are unspoken words (a restrictive clause), to the effect: if not you then who. So you see, that in such context the addition of did makes the question more restrictive (in the practical as well as grammatical) sense (look up restrictive clause).

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