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Quick answer
"En el que" is a phrase which is often translated as "in which", and "que" is a conjunction which is often translated as "that". Learn more about the difference between "en el que" and "que" below.
en el que(
ehn
 
ehl
 
keh
)
A phrase is a group of words commonly used together (e.g once upon a time).
phrase
1. (general)
a. in which (thing)
La FAO organizó un simposio en el que participaron personalidades de todo el mundo.The FAO organized a symposium in which important figures from all over the world took part.
b. on which (thing)
A continuación, voy a explicar el principio en el que se basa esta teoría.I'm going to explain now the principle on which this theory is based.
c. in whom (person)
Al menos tienes un amigo en el que puedes confiar.At least you have a friend in whom you can trust.
d. where (place)
El lugar en el que nos encontramos ahora, era el aposento real.The place where we are now, used to be the royal chamber.
e. when (time)
El día en el que ocurrió el accidente, yo no estaba aquí.I wasn't here the day when the accident happened.
f.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
El concierto en el que estuvimos anoche fue genial.The concert we went to last night was great.
No te puedes imaginar el lío en el que me vi metido por no decir la verdad.You can't imagine how much trouble I got into for not telling the truth.
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que(
keh
)
A conjunction is a word that connects words, phrases, clauses, or sentences (e.g. The cat and the dog slept.).
1. (used to introduce a subordinate clause)
a. that
Tenga en cuenta que algunas de estas características son diferentes.Note that some of these characteristics are different.
A pronoun is a word that stands in for a noun (e.g. she).
2. (used to define the subject)
a. who (person)
El hombre que le salvó la vida a mi bebé está aquí.The man who saved my baby's life is here.
b. which (thing)
El libro que más ha influido en mí es este.The book which has had the greatest influence on me is this one.
c. that (thing)
El pastel que me encanta es el de chocolate.The cake that I love is chocolate cake.
3. (used to define the object)
a. who (person)
Vi a la mujer que trabaja en el spa.I saw the woman who works in the spa.
b. which (thing)
¡Enséñame el vestido que llevaste en la fiesta!Show me the dress which you wore to the party!
c. that (thing)
Ese es el teléfono que yo quiero.That's the phone that I want.
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