Quick answer
"Why" is an adverb which is often translated as "por qué", and "how many" is a phrase which is often translated as "cuántos". Learn more about the difference between "why" and "how many" below.
An adverb is a word that describes a verb, an adjective, or other adverbs (e.g. to run quickly, very tired).
1. (in questions)
a. por qué
Why are you crying?¿Por qué lloras?
A conjunction is a word that connects words, phrases, clauses, or sentences (e.g. The cat and the dog slept.).
2. (in relative clauses)
a. por qué
I don't know why she left me.No sé por qué me dejó.
A noun is a word referring to a person, animal, place, thing, feeling or idea (e.g. man, dog, house).
3. (explanation)
a. el porqué
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
Do you really want to know why?¿De verdad quieres saber el porqué?
An interjection is a short utterance that expresses emotion, hesitation, or protest (e.g. Wow!).
4. (well)
a. vaya
Why! Look who just arrived!¡Vaya! ¡Mira quién acaba de llegar!
b. anda
Why, surely you don't think Anna stole your ring!Anda, ¡no pensarás que Anna te robó el anillo!
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how many(
A phrase is a group of words commonly used together (e.g once upon a time).
1. (in questions)
a. cuántos
How many days will you be out?¿Cuántos días vas a estar fuera?
How many pets do you have?¿Cuántas mascotas tienes?
2. (countable quantity)
a. cuanto
You pay depending on how many you choose.Pagas en base a cuantos escojas.
b. número de
There is a limit to how many times a cell can divide.Hay un límite al número de veces que una célula se puede dividir.
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