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Higher Still Italian Support Materials: Grammar Supplement

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Italian
GRAMMAR SUPPLEMENT

Italian Grammar Title Page


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Higher Still Italian Support Materials: Grammar Supplement

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First published 2000

Higher Still Development Unit


PO Box 12754
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Ladywell Road
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Italian Grammar Title Page


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Higher Still Italian Support Materials: Grammar Supplement

Grammar
Supplement

Page 1
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LA FIDANZATA DI VALENTINO: THE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


IMPERFECT TENSE

In the passage La fidanzata di Valentino the author talks about his childhood and especially
his brother Valentino. Many of the main verbs are in a tense called the imperfect
imperfect, which
you can easily spot as the endings all contain the letter v. Here are some examples taken
from this passage:

Abitavo con mio padre, mia madre e mio fratello in un piccolo appartamento....
I used to live with my father, my mother and my brother in a small flat....

Mio fratello Valentino studiava medicina e aveva sempre bisogno di soldi.


My brother Valentino was studying medicine and always needed money.

mia madre, dabitudine, puliva la sala da pranzo....


my mother would usually clean the dining room....

The imperfect tense can be used in a number of different ways. Before we look at these
lets find out how the tense is made up.

Regular Verbs:

Take off the infinitive endings -ARE, -ERE, -IRE

Replace -ARE with -AVO, -AVI , -AVA , -AVAMO, -AVATE, -AVANO

Replace -ERE with -EVO, -EVI, -EVA, -EVAMO, -EVATE, -EVANO

Replace -IRE with -IVO, -IVI, -IVA, -IVAMO, -IVATE, -IVANO

e.g. PARLARE VENDERE FINIRE

parlavo vendevo finivo


parlavi vendevi finivi
parlava vendeva finiva
parlavamo vendevamo finivamo
parlavate vendevate finivate
parlavano vendevano finivano

The majority of verbs follow one of the above regular patterns in the imperfect tense.
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Irregular verbs:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


ESSERE BERE DIRE FARE PORRE

ero bevevo dicevo facevo ponevo


eri bevevi dicevi facevi ponevi
era beveva diceva faceva poneva
eravamo bevevamo dicevamo facevamo ponevamo
eravate bevevate dicevate facevate ponevate
erano bevevano dicevano facevano ponevano

Meaning:

The imperfect tense is a past tense. It should not however be confused with the
perfect tense.

The perfect tense is used to express a single, completed action in the past, e.g.

Sabato sera sono andato al cinema. On Saturday night I went to the cinema.
Ieri ho visto la tua mamma in citt. Yesterday I saw your mum in town.

The imperfect tense is used to express an habitual action in the past


(often translated by used to....) as well as a continuous action in the past
(often translated by was... were... -ing), e.g.

Quando ero giovane andavo al cinema ogni sabato.


When I was young I used to go to the cinema every Saturday.

Andavo in citt quando ho visto tua zia.


I was going into town when I saw your aunt.

The imperfect tense is also used for description in the past, e.g.

Giovanni era di statura media; aveva i capelli corti e neri e portava una giacca grigia.
Giovanni was of medium height; he had short, black hair and was wearing a grey jacket.

Before you do the following exercises re-read La fidanzata di Valentino and try to work
out why the author has used the imperfect.
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Ex.1:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


Change the infinitives into the correct part of the imperfect tense
tense.
Show this work to your teacher.

1. La professoressa parlare agli studenti.


2. Gli alunni rispondere alle domande.
3. I ragazzi finire i compiti sul pullman.
4. Io essere in Italia durante lestate.
5. Gianni uscire mentre io entrare
entrare.
6. Tu andare in citt quando io ti ho visto?
7. Voi fare del ciclismo quando essere giovani?
8. Una volta noi bere laranciata ma adesso beviamo il vino.
9. Lanno scorso il treno partire alle dieci meno un quarto.
10. Quando io essere giovane avere un cane.
11. Il mio cane chiamarsi Muzzi.
12. Tu volere vedere il film?
13. Cristina porre i suoi vestiti nellarmadio.
14. Voi scendere dal tass quando vi ho visto.
15. Noi mangiare sempre a mezzogiorno.
16. Mi piacere il t ma ora preferisco il caff.
17. Non sono venuto a scuola ieri perch non sentirsi bene.
18. I ragazzi lavare i piatti in cucina.
19. Lanno scorso Marco giocare a calcio ogni sabato.
20. Di solito al supermercato io spendere cinquantamila lire.
21. La banca chiudere alle tre e mezza ma ora chiude alle cinque.
22. Cosa dire , Mario?
23. Voi sapere che Nadia andata a vivere in America?
24. Noi ci siamo sposati quando avere venticinque anni.
25. Io non potere guardare la partita alla tiv perch lavorare
lavorare.
26. Paolo non volere giocare a calcio perch gli fare male la gamba.
27. Quando essere giovane non piacere a Anna andare a scuola.
28. Ogni sera io fare i miei compiti perch avere paura dei professori.
29. I ragazzi dire sempre arrivederci al professore quando uscire di classe.
30. Roberto ascoltare i dischi mentre gli altri ragazzi giocare a calcio.
31. Le signore salire sullautobus perch desiderare andare al mercato.
32. Tu non potere uscire oggi perch fare cattivo tempo.
33. Lui chiedere spesso, ma loro rifiutare sempre.
34. Mentre tu salire le scale in gran fretta sei cascato e ti sei fatto male.
35. Noi parlare italiano mentre voi ascoltare il maestro.
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Ex.2:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


Change the infinitives into the correct part of either the imperfect or perfect tenses
tenses. Show
this work to your teacher.

1. Io volere andare al cinema, ma lei decidere di stare a casa.


2. A quel tempo Elena e Giovanni stare in Italia, e siccome Roberto essere in vacanza
a Roma andare a trovarli.
3. Ogni giorno Margherita uscire di casa alle otto e camminare subito a scuola.
4. Roberto venire sempre a casa mia e una volta dare un bel mazzo di fiori a mia
madre.
5. Piacere molto a mio padre giocare a scacchi quando essere giovane.
6. Mario, perch non potere aspettare un momento? Io volere parlarti ma tu uscire in
fretta e furia.
7. Lui volere fumare nello scompartimento, ma voi chiamare il capotreno.
8. Aldo ed io dovere andare a scuola ogni mattina ma di solito preferire fare un giro
in centro.
9. Mara e Lisa lavorare a maglia quando sentire un rumore fuori.
10. Pietro e Maria divertirsi molto al ballo ieri sera e non tornare a casa fino a
mezzanotte.
11. Io non potere guardare la televisione perch Laura volere suonare il flauto.
12. Quando avere tre anni Giovanni dovere sempre andare a letto presto, siccome
essere molto giovane.

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LA FIDANZATA DI VALENTINO: THE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


IMPERFECT TENSE
ANSWER KEY

Ex. 1:
1. parlava 2. rispondevano 3. finivano 4. ero 5. usciva, entravo 6. andavi
7. facevate, eravate 8. bevevamo 9. partiva 10. ero, avevo 11. si chiamava
12. volevi 13. poneva 14. scendevate 15. mangiavamo 16. piaceva
17. mi sentivo 18. lavavano 19. giocava 20. spendevo 21. chiudeva 22. dicevi
23. sapevate 24. avevamo 25. potevo, lavoravo 26. voleva, faceva 27. era,
piaceva 28. facevo, avevo 29. dicevano, uscivano 30. ascoltava, giocavano
31. salivano, desideravano 32. potevi, faceva 33. chiedeva, rifiutavano
34. salivi 35. parlavamo, ascoltavate

Ex. 2:
1. volevo, ha deciso 2. stavano, era, andato 3. usciva, camminava
4. veniva, ha dato 5. Piaceva, era 6. potevi, volevo, sei uscito 7. voleva,
avete chiamato 8. dovevamo, preferivamo 9. lavoravano, hanno sentito
10. si sono divertiti, sono tornati 11. potevo, voleva 12. aveva, doveva, era

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UN MATRIMONIO SINGOLARE:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


STARE PER + INFINITIVE
If you want to say you are about to do something, in Italian you use the verb stare with
per
per. For example:

Sto per uscire I am about to go out

Here are some sentences. Translate them into English and show your teacher.

1. Mia sorella sta per andare al lavoro.


2. Stiamo per mangiare.
3. Le ragazze stanno per partire.
4. Mio fratello sta per telefonare.

To talk about what you were about to do in the past, you use the imperfect of stare with
per
per. For example:

Stavo per uscire I was about to go out.

Put these sentences into English and show them to your teacher.

1. Mio padre stava per partire.


2. Stavamo per finire.
3. La gente stava per applaudire.
4. Stavate per uscire?

When used in the imperfect


imperfect, it may be used alongside the perfect tense. Translate this
short paragraph into English and show it to your teacher.

Il sole splendeva. Era una giornata meravigliosa. Stavo per uscire quando ho visto il mio
amico dalla finestra. Lho chiamato e mi ha aspettato. Stavamo per prendere lautobus
quando abbiamo deciso di andare a scuola a piedi.

Now try to put some sentences into Italian. Show your teacher.

1. He is about to leave.
2. I was about to get on the train.
3. Is she about to go out?
4. She was about to phone him.
5. We were about to buy the house when we saw the next door neighbour!
6. They were about to buy tickets when they saw the price.

See if you can find any examples of stare per in the passage.
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UN MATRIMONIO SINGOLARE: STARE PER

Italian: Grammar Supplement


+ INFINITIVE
ANSWER KEY

1. My sister is about to go to work.


2. Were about to eat.
3. The girls are about to leave.
4. My brother is about to telephone.

1. My father was about to leave.


2. We were about to finish.
3. The people were about to applaud.
4. Were you about to go out?

The sun was shining. It was a splendid day. I was about to go out when I saw my
friend from the window. I called over to him and he waited for me. We were about
to catch the bus when we decided to walk to school.

1. Sta per partire.


2. Stavo per salire sul treno.
3. Sta per uscire?
4. Stava per telefonargli.
5. Stavamo per comprare la casa quando abbiamo visto il vicino di casa!
6. Stavano per comprare dei biglietti quando hanno visto il prezzo.

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UNA CENA IN FAMIGLIA: THE PAST DEFINITE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


Re-read the passage Una cena in famiglia. The writer uses a tense called the Past
Definite (also known as the Preterite or the Past Historic). The Italian name for this tense
(il passato remoto) gives you a clue about when it is used, i.e. to describe events that
happened only once some time ago. Here are some examples taken from the passage:

Partimmo con la vecchia auto. We left in the old car.


Alberto mi fece entrare in casa. Alberto showed me into the house.
Quando dissi che... When I said that...
La signora Rossi mi guard
guard... Mrs. Rossi looked at me...
Lei sorrise e and a prendere... She smiled and went to get...

What should you know about this tense?

a. It is a literary tense and is used for the most part in short stories and novels to
describe single actions in the past which are started and completed
completed. Where have
you heard this before? Answer: when you learnt the perfect tense.

b. Dont use this tense in conversation, although you will hear it being spoken in Tuscany.

c. As far as the Higher is concerned, the Past Definite is a recognition tense, i.e. you
are only required to understand what it means when you see it and not to write or
speak it. To do this, however, you will have to be familiar with the different forms of
the tense and especially the irregular forms.

d. Your teacher will give you further information about this tense if you need it.

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How is the Past Definite formed? Here are the rules for regular verbs:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


a. Remove the last three letters from the infinitive to form the stem.
b. Add on the endings (in bold below).
c. Note that there are alternative endings for the first and third person singular and
third person plural of -ERE verbs.

PORTARE CREDERE FINIRE

portai
ai credei
ei finiiii
etti
credetti

portasti
asti credesti
esti finisti
isti

port
cred
fin
ette
credette

portammo
ammo credemmo
emmo finimmo
immo

portaste
aste credeste
este finiste
iste

portarono
arono crederono
erono finirono
irono
ettero
credettero

Now lets look at some irregular verbs. With the exceptions of DARE, ESSERE and STARE
(see below) verbs with irregular Past Definites all follow a pattern. Only the first person
singular, third person singular and third person plural come from the irregular Past Definite:
the other persons are taken from the infinitive of the verb itself, e.g.:

CORRERE (to run)

CORSI corremmo
corresti correste
CORSE CORSERO

This can be tricky to understand so check it out with your teacher. The following are the
most common irregular Past Definites (the first person singular of each is given after the
infinitive):

AVERE (to have) = EBBI


BERE (to drink) = BEVVI
CADERE (to fall) = CADDI
CHIEDERE (to ask) = CHIESI
CHIUDERE (to close) = CHIUSI
CONOSCERE (to know) = CONOBBI
CORRERE (to run) = CORSI
CRESCERE (to grow) = CREBBI
DARE * (to give) = DETTI
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DECIDERE (to decide) = DECISI


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DIRE (to say) = DISSI

Italian: Grammar Supplement


DOVERE (to have to) = DOVEI/DOVETTI
ESSERE * (to be) = FUI
FARE (to do, to make) = FECI
GIUNGERE (to reach) = GIUNSI
LEGGERE (to read) = LESSI
METTERE (to put) = MISI
NASCERE (to be born) = NACQUI
NASCONDERE (to hide) = NASCOSI
PERDERE (to lose) = PERSI
PIACERE (to please) = PIACQUI
PIOVERE (to rain) = PIOVVE
PRENDERE (to take) = PRESI
RIDERE (to laugh) = RISI
RIMANERE (to remain) = RIMASI
RISPONDERE (to reply) = RISPOSI
SAPERE (to know) = SEPPI
SCEGLIERE (to choose) = SCELSI
SCENDERE (to descend) = SCESI
SCRIVERE (to write) = SCRISSI
SPINGERE (to push) = SPINSI
STARE * (to stay / be) = STETTI
TENERE (to hold) = TENNI
TOGLIERE (to take off) = TOLSI
TRADURRE (to translate) = TRADUSSI
VEDERE (to see) = VIDI
VENIRE (to come) = VENNI
VOLERE (to want) = VOLSI

Verbs marked with an asterisk (*) in the above list are highly irregular and are conjugated
as follows (note that DARE has some alternative forms):

DARE (to give) ESSERE (to be) STARE (to stay/ be)

diedi fui stetti


detti

desti fosti stesti

diede fu stette
dette

demmo fummo stemmo

deste foste steste

diedero furono stettero


dettero
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Also note that with BERE, DIRE and FARE the longer infinitive (i.e. bevere, dicere,

Italian: Grammar Supplement


facere; these are the old Latin infinitives) is used in the formation of the first person
plural and the second person singular and plural:

BERE (to drink) DIRE (to say) FARE (to do, to make)
bevvi dissi feci
bevesti dicesti facesti
bevve disse fece
bevemmo dicemmo facemmo
beveste diceste faceste
bevvero dissero fecero

Now for some practice. Read this fairy tale which is written in the Past Definite. To help
you the Past Definite verbs are in bold type.

UNA FAVOLA
Cera una volta una povera donna che and nel bosco a prendere legna per il fuoco.
Mentre tornava a casa, trov
trov, dietro una siepe, un gatto ammalato che gemeva e che
piangeva. La donna aveva buon cuore, e, piena di compassione, port il gatto a casa.

Per la strada incontr due bambini che domandarono


domandarono:

Che cosa hai nel grembiule? un gatto! Possiamo giocare con il gatto?

Ma la donna voleva proteggere lanimale ammalato e non lo lasci ai bambini. Quando


arriv a casa, prepar un letto per il gatto su un mucchio di vestiti logori e port un po di
latte. Il gatto fin il latte e dorm fino alla mattina dopo. Poi spar
spar, e non torn pi in quella
casa. Qualche tempo dopo questo fatto, la donna and di nuovo nel bosco con lintenzione
di cercare un po di legna e, mentre tornava a casa, trov allo stesso posto, invece del
gatto, una bella ragazza, molto elegante, che la chiam per nome. La bella ragazza
gett cinque ferri da calza nel grembiule della donna e poi spar spar.

La donna non sapeva che cosa pensare: e quella sera lasci i ferri da calza sul tavolo e
and a dormire. La mattina dopo trov sul tavolo un bel paio di calze gi pronte. Molto
meravigliata la donna, la sera seguente, lasci di nuovo i ferri sul tavolo ed il giorno dopo
trov un altro paio di calze.

Allora cap che quei ferri magici erano il premio della compassione per il gatto. Con
laiuto di essi vest tutta la famiglia e poi cominci a vendere le calze e divent molto
ricca.

Now do these exercises and show them to your teacher for correction:
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Ex.1:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


Translate the fairy tale into English.

Ex.2:
In the following sentences, change the singular to the plural and vice-versa (you may also
have to do the same to some nouns and adjectives!):

1. Portasti il gatto a casa.


2. Andammo a dormire.
3. Entr in quel negozio.
4. Dove trovarono le calze?
5. La donna divent ricca.
6. La ragazza lasci la valigia.
7. Mentre tornavo a casa, trovai un gatto.
8. Accompagnai lamica di Giovanni al cinema.
9. Portasti la valigia alla stazione.
10. Il gatto fin il latte.
11. Il ragazzo non vend la sua bicicletta.
12. Non potei arrivare al teatro in tempo.

Ex. 3:
Insert the correct form of the Past Definite:

1. Io (ARRIVARE) alla stazione in ritardo.


2. Lei non (CREDERE) a quello che Gino (RACCONTARE)
(RACCONTARE).
3. Loro (SENTIRE) una voce che chiamava.
4. Noi (COMINCIARE) a cantare.
5. Voi non (CAPIRE) quella lezione.
6. Tu (DORMIRE) fino alla dieci.
7. Il padre (PORTARE) la legna a casa.
8. I ragazzi (DOMANDARE) se potevano partire.
9. Tu (LASCIARE) la calza sul tavolo.
10. Io (ANDARE) a letto tardi.

Ex.4:
Substitute the correct tense of the verb (choose between the Perfect, Imperfect or Past
Definite):
Definite

FARE
Quella sera (FARE VOLERE
FARE) molto freddo, e Giovanni (VOLERE
VOLERE) passare la sera a casa. Per, alle
ARRIVARE
sette e mezzo (ARRIVARE DESIDERARE
ARRIVARE) Antonio che (DESIDERARE
DESIDERARE) andare al cinema. A quale cinema
DOMANDARE
vuoi andare? (DOMANDARE ESSERE
DOMANDARE) Giovanni. (ESSERE
ESSERE) al Rex mercoled sera con la fidanzata,
VEDERE
e (VEDERE
VEDERE) il film che danno allOdeon. Perch non vuoi stare qui a guardare la televisione?
AVERE
Ma lamico (AVERE
AVERE) gi un appuntamento per andare al cinema. Mentre (SPIEGARE SPIEGARE
SPIEGARE)
ENTRARE
questo a Giovanni, la mamma (ENTRARE COMINCIARE
ENTRARE) in cucina e (COMINCIARE
COMINCIARE) a preparare il caff.
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UNA CENA IN FAMIGLIA: THE PAST DEFINITE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


ANSWER KEY

Ex.1:
Once upon a time there was a poor woman who went into the forest to gather
some firewood. While she was going back home, she found, behind a hedge, a sick
cat which was moaning and crying. The woman had a tender heart, and, full of pity,
brought the cat home.

On the way she met two children who asked:

What do you have in your apron? Its a cat! Can we play with the cat?

But the woman wanted to protect the sick animal and didnt leave it with the children.
When she arrived home, she prepared a bed for the cat on a pile of shabby clothes and
brought it some milk. The cat finished the milk and slept until the following morning.
Then it disappeared, and never again returned to the house. Some time after these events,
the woman went once again into the forest with the intention of gathering some firewood
and, while she was returning home, she found in the same place not the cat but a
beautiful and very elegant girl, who called her by her name. The beautiful girl threw five
knitting needles into the womans apron and then vanished.

The woman did not know what to think, and that evening she left the knitting needles
on the table and went to bed. The next morning she found on the table a lovely pair of
stockings ready to be worn. Amazed by this, the woman left the knitting needles once
again on the table the following evening and the next day found another pair of stockings.

She then realised that the magic needles were a reward for the pity she had shown
towards the cat. With their help she clothed her entire family , then began to sell the
stockings and became very rich.

Ex.2:
1. Portaste i gatti a casa. 2. Andai a dormire. 3. Entrarono in quei negozi. 4. Dove trov la
calza? 5. Le donne diventarono molto ricche. 6. Le ragazze lasciarono le valigie. 7. Mentre
tornavamo a casa, trovammo dei gatti. 8. Accompagnammo le amiche di Giovanni al
cinema. 9. Portaste le valigie alla stazione. 10. I gatti finirono il latte. 11. I ragazzi non
venderono / vendettero le loro biciclette. 12. Non potemmo arrivare al teatro in tempo.

Ex.3:
1. arrivai 2. cred / credette, raccont 3. sentirono 4. cominciammo 5. capiste
6. dormisti 7. port 8. domandarono 9. lasciasti 10. andai

Ex.4:
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faceva, voleva, arriv, desiderava, domand, ero, ho / abbiamo visto, aveva, spiegava,
entr, cominci
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LA MIA VITA DI CASA:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


AGREEMENT OF ADJECTIVES
Read the passage La mia vita di casa and ask yourself this question: which of
these words are adjectives? If you were asked to write out a list of phrases
containing adjectives in the passage you might come up with some of the following:

lultimo autobus
Il fine settimana ... un po diverso
Sabato sempre un po caotico
La domenica molto tranquilla
la mia migliore amica
abito vicino a un lago... pieno di turisti
ottima cuoca
mia madre unottima
musica di vario genere

Adjectives in Italian can be divided into two categories:

Type A: those which end in -O


-O, e.g. bianco, italiano, piccolo
Type B: those which end in -E
-E, e.g. diligente, giovane, elegante

However you have to be careful as Italian adjectives have to agree in number and
gender with the nouns they describe. Look at the following table and note how the
last letter of the adjective can sometimes change:

Type A Type B

Masculine singular: italiano diligente


Feminine singular: italiana diligente
Masculine plural: italiani diligenti
Feminine plural: italiane diligenti

One other thing: there are a few adjectives which end in other letters apart from
o and e, e.g. blu, gratis. These adjectives do not need to agree.

Here are some examples of adjectives agreeing with nouns:

una borsetta nuova


due ragazzi giovani
una bella torta
tre penne rosse
quattro macchine gialle
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Now for some practice. In the following exercise rewrite the adjective in brackets so that

Italian: Grammar Supplement


it agrees with the noun:

1. due castelli (italiano)


2. una giacca (verde)
3. una ragazza (biondo)
4. un vestito (grigio)
5. uno studente (intelligente)
6. dei guanti (giallo)
7. la casa (bianco)
8. un maglione (arancione)
9. un pettine (nero)
10. dei pantaloni (corto)
11. una lista (breve)
12. una gonna (rosso)
13. due treni (rapido)
14. un cappello (marrone)
15. tre gomme (rettangolare)
16. una sciarpa (elegante)
17. quattro penne (nuovo)
18. dei calzini (blu)
19. una borsetta (esclusivo)
20. una maglietta (azzurro)
21. un ragazzo (stanco)
22. una macchina (sportivo)
23. le studentesse (diligente)
24. le professoresse (bravo)
25. gli studenti (pigro)
26. un programma (noioso)
27. le ragazze (cattivo)
28. le lezioni (interessante)
29. tre film (meraviglioso)
30. un giorno (libero)
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LA MIA VITA DI CASA:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


AGREEMENT OF ADJECTIVES
ANSWER KEY

1. italiani 2. verde 3. bionda 4. grigio 5. intelligente 6. gialli 7. bianca 8. arancione 9. nero


10. corti 11. breve 12. rossa 13. rapidi 14. marrone 15. rettangolari 16. elegante
17. nuove 18. blu 19. esclusiva 20. azzurra 21. stanco 22. sportiva 23. diligenti
24. brave 25. pigri 26. noioso 27. cattive 28. interessanti 29. meravigliosi 30. libero

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I PERICOLI DEI COMPUTER:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


NEGATIVE EXPRESSIONS
Read these phrases which have been taken from the passage I pericoli dei computer:

non vero
non ascolta pi, non risponde pi
luomo non ricorre pi nemmeno

What do they all have in common? Answer: they all contain negative expressions.
You probably know the simplest negative expression already; it is non. Look at these
sentences:

Dario ha scritto la lettera. Dario wrote the letter.


Dario non ha scritto la lettera. Dario did not write the letter.

Non is easy to use; you just place it before the verb to make a sentence negative. There
are other negative expressions, however, which are usually in two parts; the first part is
non and goes in front of the verb with the second part going after the verb. Look at these
examples:

Dario non ha scritto niente


niente. Dario wrote nothing
nothing.
Dario non mai
ha scritto mai. Dario never wrote.
Dario non ha scritto pi
pi. Dario no longer wrote.

Here is a list of the most common negative expressions:

non... nessuno no-one, nobody


non...niente nothing
non...nulla nothing
non...n...n neither...nor
non...mai never
non...ancora not yet
non...pi no longer, no more
non...affatto not at all
non...mica not at all
non...neanche not even
non...nemmeno not even
non...neppure not even
non...che only
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There are a few things you have to watch when using these:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


a. nessuno, niente, n...n and che all follow the past participle, e.g.

Dina non ha visto nessuno. Dina saw no-one.


Dina non ha visto niente. Dina saw nothing.
Dina non ha visto n Mario n Gino. Dina saw neither Mario nor Gino.
Dina non ha visto che Alberto. Dina only saw Alberto.

b. affatto, ancora, mai, neanche, nemmeno, neppure and pi can either follow the
past participle or go between the auxiliary verb and the past participle, e.g.

Non sono andato ancora in Italia OR Non sono ancora andato in Italia.
Non sono andato mai in Italia OR Non sono mai andato in Italia.
Non sono andato pi in Italia OR Non sono pi andato in Italia.

c. You can sometimes use the second part of negatives on their own, e.g.

Chi ha bussato alla porta? Nessuno. Who knocked at the door? No-one.
Cosa ti ha comprato? Niente. What did he buy you? Nothing.
Quando vieni a casa mia? Mai. When are you coming to my house?
Never.

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Now for some practice.

Italian: Grammar Supplement


Ex.1:
Rewrite these sentences using the negative expression in brackets (all verbs are in the
present tense
tense):

1. Marta fa i compiti ditaliano. (non...mai)


2. I ragazzi comprano un bel regalo. (non...nulla)
3. Metto tremila lire nel portafoglio. (non...che)
4. Vediamo Rita e Sandra. (non...n...n)
5. Ascolti il programma. (non...pi)
6. Mangio molto. (non...affatto)
7. Incontrano Luca alla stazione. (non...nessuno)
8. Beve solo un bicchiere di vino. (non...neppure)

Ex.2:
Here are the same sentences with all the verbs now in the perfect tense
tense. Rewrite them
using the negative expression in brackets:

1. Marta ha fatto i compiti ditaliano. (non...mai)


2. I ragazzi hanno comprato un bel regalo. (non...nulla)
3. Ho messo tremila lire nel portafoglio. (non...che)
4. Abbiamo visto Rita e Sandra. (non...n...n)
5. Hai ascoltato il programma. (non...pi)
6. Ho mangiato molto. (non...affatto)
7. Hanno incontrato Luca alla stazione. (non...nessuno)
8. Ha bevuto solo un bicchiere di vino. (non...neppure)

Show this work to your teacher.

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I PERICOLI DEI COMPUTER:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


NEGATIVE EXPRESSIONS
ANSWER KEY

Ex. 1:
1. Marta non fa mai i compiti ditaliano.
2. I ragazzi non comprano nulla.
3. Non metto che tremila lire nel portafoglio.
4. Non vediamo n Rita n Sandra.
5. Non ascolti pi il programma.
6. Non mangio affatto.
7. Non incontrano nessuno alla stazione.
8. Non beve neppure un bicchiere di vino.

Ex. 2:
1. Marta non ha mai fatto i compiti ditaliano OR Marta non ha fatto mai i compiti
ditaliano.
2. I ragazzi non hanno comprato nulla.
3. Non ho messo che tremila lire nel portafoglio.
4. Non abbiamo visto n Rita n Sandra.
5. Non hai pi ascoltato il programma OR Non hai ascoltato pi il programma.
6. Non ho mangiato affatto.
7. Non hanno incontrato nessuno alla stazione.
8. Non ha bevuto neppure un bicchiere di vino.

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LA GIORNATA DI EDOARDO:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


REFLEXIVE VERBS

Read the passage La giornata di Edoardo. As you know, this passage describes Edoardos
daily routine and that of his family. To do this, a special type of verb called a reflexive verb
is often used. Here is a list of phrases from the passage which use reflexive verbs. Read
over them and write next to each one what you think it means in English:

ci alziamo tutti molto presto


mio padre si alza per primo
mia sorella si lava, si veste
mi alzo anchio
mi lavo, mi vesto

Reflexive verbs usually describe actions we do to ourselves. Look at these


Italian sentences and compare them to the translations given:

Luigi si alza alle sette. Luigi gets (himself) up at seven.


Io mi vesto in camera. I get (myself) dressed in the bedroom.
Noi ci laviamo subito. We get (ourselves) washed immediately.
Loro si divertono
divertono. They enjoy themselves.

From the English translations you will see that reflexive verbs usually (but not always) use
the words myself, yourself, himself, etc. These are a vital part of every reflexive verb and
are called reflexive pronouns
pronouns. In Italian these are:

mi ti si ci vi si

These are normally placed before the verb, e.g.

Mi chiamo Edoardo. My name is Edoardo.


Si pettinato. He combed his hair.
Ci siamo svegliati tardi. We woke up late.
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Here is a list of the most common Italian reflexive verbs:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


ADDORMENTARSI to fall asleep
ALZARSI to get up
ARRABBIARSI to get angry
CHIAMARSI to be called / named
CORICARSI to go to bed
DIVERTIRSI to enjoy oneself
FARSI LA DOCCIA* to have a shower
FARSI MALE* to get hurt / injured
FIDANZARSI to get engaged
LAVARSI to get washed
LAUREARSI to graduate
METTERSI* to put on (clothing)
PETTINARSI to comb ones hair
PREPARARSI to get oneself ready
PULIRSI to clean oneself
RADERSI* to shave
RICORDARSI to remember
SEDERSI* to sit down
SENTIRSI to feel (an emotion)
SPOGLIARSI to undress
SPOSARSI to get married
SVEGLIARSI to wake up
TRUCCARSI to put on make-up
VESTIRSI to get dressed

You will have noticed that when reflexive verbs are in their infinitive form the reflexive
pronoun si is tagged onto the end of the infinitive. This makes no difference to how the
verb is formed, e.g. to make up the present tense of sposarsi just think of it as a normal -
are verb (i.e. remove the -are and add your endings) but remember to add the reflexive
pronouns, as follows:

Mi sposo, ti sposi, si sposa, ci sposiamo, vi sposate, si sposano.

Here is the same verb in the perfect tense:

Mi sono sposato/a, ti sei sposato/a, si sposato/a,


ci siamo sposati/e, vi siete sposati/e, si sono sposati/e.

The thing to remember here is that all reflexive verbs are conjugated with essere in the
perfect tense, and so you sometimes have to make the past participle agree. Talk this
over with your teacher if you dont understand it!

One final thing; watch out for verbs in the above list which are asterisked.
This means that they have either an irregular present tense and/or past participle
so check them out in your verb tables before you use them.
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Now for some practice. Get your teacher to correct these exercises once you

Italian: Grammar Supplement


complete them:

Ex.1:
Put the reflexive verb in brackets into the correct part of the present tense:

1. Io (alzarsi) verso le sette ogni mattina.


2. Maria (svegliarsi) alle otto precise per andare al lavoro.
3. Le ragazze (truccarsi) prima di andare in discoteca.
4. Paola (pettinarsi) davanti allo specchio.
5. I miei fratelli (sposarsi) nel mese di maggio.
6. Noi (lavarsi) sempre con acqua fredda.
7. Io (coricarsi) molto tardi.
8. Voi non (vestirsi) in tempo.
9. Tu (fidanzarsi) con quella ragazza?
10. Stefano (farsi) la doccia, poi (radersi).

Ex.2:
Now do Ex.1 again, but his time put the reflexive verb in brackets into the correct part of
the perfect tense, not forgetting to make the past participle agree if necessary.

Ex.3:
Using some of the verbs in the above list, write out a short account in the present tense of
your daily routine. Start your account with the words Ogni mattina...

Ex.4:
Now rewrite your daily routine in the perfect tense starting with the words Ieri mattina...
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LA GIORNATA DI EDOARDO:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


REFLEXIVE VERBS
ANSWER KEY

We all get up very early.


My father gets up first.
My sister gets wasted and dressed.
I also get up.
I get washed and dressed.

Ex.1:
1. mi alzo 2. si sveglia 3. si truccano 4. si pettina 5. si sposano 6. ci laviamo 7. mi corico
8. vi vestite 9. ti fidanzi 10. si fa, si rade

Ex.2:
1. mi sono alzato/a 2. si svegliata 3. si sono truccate 4. si pettinata 5. si sono sposati
6. ci siamo lavati/e 7. mi sono coricato/a 8. vi siete vestit/i/e 9. ti sei fidanzato
10. si fatto, si raso

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VENEZIA, CITT MORENTE:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


STARE + GERUND
In the first line of the passage Venezia, citt morente there is the phase Venezia
sta morendo da anni. This can be translated as Venice has been dying for
years; you may recognise the verbs stare and morire being used in an unfamiliar
way. This is a common Italian construction known as stare plus a gerund
gerund.

To understand this construction you have to think about the difference between these
two sentences:

Roberto mangia una mela.


Roberto sta mangiando una mela.

The first sentence uses the present tense,and can be translated in two ways:

Robert eats an apple OR Robert is eating an apple.

The second sentence uses the present tense of the verb stare (sto, stai, sta, stiamo, state,
stanno) and the gerund of the verb mangiare (well explain what a gerund is in a moment).
Italians use this construction if they want to emphasise that someone is busy or in the
middle of doing something, so we could translate the second sentence as follows:

Robert is busy eating an apple OR Robert is in the middle of eating an apple.

You can also use stare in the imperfect tense (stavo, stavi, stava, stavamo, stavate, stavano).
Here is the same sentence rewritten with the imperfect of stare:

Roberto stava mangiando una mela.

The meaning is now as follows:

Robert was busy eating an apple OR Robert was in the middle of eating an apple.

Remember that when you use stare + gerund you can only use stare in
either the present or imperfect tenses.

Now more about gerunds. You can spot these in English as they end in -ing, e.g.
eating, singing, travelling, etc. In Italian they either end in -ando or -endo. This
is how you make them up:

-are verbs: take infinitive, remove -are and add -ando, e.g. parlare, parlando
-ere verbs: take infinitive, remove -ere and add -endo, e.g. vendere, vendendo
-ire verbs: take infinitive, remove -ire and add -endo, e.g. finire, finendo
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The only common exceptions you have to watch are as follows:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


bere = bevendo
fare = facendo
dire = dicendo
tradurre = traducendo
condurre = conducendo
trarre = traendo

Now for some practice. Show these exercises to your teacher once you complete them.

Ex.1:
Form gerunds from these infinitives:

aprire, desiderare, smettere, decidere, amare, pulire, copiare, rendere, guarire,


chiacchierare, dire, bere.

Ex.2:
Replace the underlined verb with the present tense of stare + gerund:

Example: Se parti proprio adesso posso tornare un altro giorno =


Se stai partendo proprio adesso posso tornare un altro giorno.

l. A questora il treno arriva al binario dieci.


2. Cosa metti nellarmadio?
3. Luigi finisce i compiti di matematica.
4. Raccontiamo la trama del film.
5. Perch scrivete quella lettera?
6. Fanno troppo rumore.
7. Bevo unaranciata ghiacciata.
8. Pulisci la stanza.
9. Che cosa dice Maria?
10. Cantiamo una bella canzone napoletana.

Ex. 3
Fill in the blank with the imperfect tense of stare plus the gerund of the infinitive in brackets:

Example: Lartista _____ un bel quadro. (dipingere)


Lartista stava dipingendo un bel quadro.

1. leggere
Quando sono arrivato mio fratello _____ una rivista. (leggere
leggere)
2. uscire
Io e Giulia _____ dal negozio quando ci siamo accorsi di non aver pagato. (uscire
uscire)
3. fare
Ho visto Gino due minuti fa, _____ i piatti in cucina. (fare
fare)
4. lavorare
Io _____ quando suonato lallarme. (lavorare
lavorare)
5. urlare
Ti ho sentito ieri; _____ a tuo cugino. (urlare
urlare)
6. dire
Non vi ho capito; cosa _____ ? (dire
dire)
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7. suonare
I due ragazzi _____ invece di ascoltare il professore. (suonare
suonare)
8. perdere
Lei _____ la partita perch non era in forma. (perdere
perdere)
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VENEZIA, CITT MORENTE:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


STARE + GERUND
ANSWER KEY

Ex. 1:
aprendo, desiderando, smettendo, decidendo, amando, pulendo, copiando, rendendo,
guarendo, chiacchierando, dicendo, bevendo.

Ex. 2:
1. sta arrivando 2. stai mettendo 3. sta finendo 4. Stiamo raccontando 5. state scrivendo
6. Stanno facendo 7. Sto bevendo 8. Stai pulendo 9. sta dicendo 10. Stiamo cantando

Ex. 3:
1. stava leggendo 2. stavamo uscendo 3. stava facendo 4. stavo lavorando 5. stavi urlando
6. stavate dicendo 7. stavano suonando 8. stava perdendo

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LUNIVERSIT ITALIANA DI PERUGIA:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


VOLERE/POTERE
During your study of Italian you will already have come across two key verbs, volere and
potere
potere. You probably know the meanings of these two verbs: volere means to want and
potere means to be able to (can). The purpose of the following series of exercises is to give
you a little more practice with these verbs, especially in tenses other than the present.

To start off re-read the passage LUniversit italiana di Perugia, make a list of all the
phrases you see which use volere and potere, and then translate each one. When you are
finished show your work to your teacher.

Here are some of the phrases you may have noted down:

Volete imparare litaliano? Do you want to learn Italian?


chi vuole laurearsi those who want to get a degree
Vuoi fare un corso di un mese? Do you want to do a month long course?
Dove posso alloggiare? Where can I get accommodation?
potrete mangiare alla mensa universitaria you will be able to eat at the
university canteen
Potete anche passare il weekend You can also pass the weekend

Lets now have a closer look at the verb volere:

(a) present tense: voglio, vuoi, vuole, vogliamo, volete, vogliono

When you use this tense of volere the meaning is quite emphatic: I want, you want,
he/she wants etc.

e.g. Io voglio comprare quella macchina ma mia moglie non vuole chio la compri.
I want to buy that car but my wife doesnt want me to buy it.

(b) conditional tense: vorrei, vorresti, vorrebbe, vorremmo, vorreste, vorrebbero

The meaning is now less emphatic: I would like, you would like, he/she would like,
etc. The conditional of volere is therefore used a lot in polite requests and also to
indicate someones wishes (i.e. the things they would like to do), e. g.

Vorrei un litro di vino bianco, per favore.


I would like a litre of white wine, please.

Mia sorella vorrebbe andare in vacanza con gli amici.


My sister would like to go on holiday with her friends.
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(c) One other thing to remember is that you can follow volere with either a noun or an

Italian: Grammar Supplement


infinitive. When you follow it with an infinitive you do not need a linking preposition
such as a or di. Study these sentences:

Mario vuole una mela. Mario wants an apple.


Mario vuole mangiare una mela. Mario wants to eat an apple.

Noi vorremmo una casa al mare. We would like a house at the seaside.
Noi vorremmo comprare una We would like to buy a house
casa al mare. at the seaside.

Now lets take a similar look at the verb potere:

(a) present tense: posso, puoi, pu, possiamo, potete, possono

The meaning here is quite simple: I am able to (I can), you are able to (you can), he/
she is able to (he/she can), etc. Look at these examples:

Posso parlare adesso? Can I speak now?


Mia zia non pu uscire di casa. My aunt is unable to leave the house.
Possiamo andarci alle otto. We can go there at eight oclock.

(b) conditional tense: potrei, potresti, potrebbe, potremmo, potreste, potrebbero

Watch the meaning of the conditional of potere; as well as meaning I would be able
to, etc. it can also mean I could, etc. Look at these examples:

Potrei arrivare prima delle otto, ma sarebbe troppo presto.


I could arrive before seven, but it would be too soon.

Potremmo cambiarlo, ma funziona sempre bene.


We could change it, but it still works well.

(c) perfect tense: ho potuto, hai potuto, ha potuto, abbiamo potuto, avete potuto,
hanno potuto

As you would expect, this means I have been able to (I was able to), etc. Unlike
volere (which can be followed by either a noun or an infinitive) potere can only be
followed by an infinitive, and does not need a or di as a link. Look again at all the
examples of potere given above to check this out.

There is only one thing to watch when you use the perfect tense of potere; if the
infinitive which follows is an essere verb then you must also use essere as the auxiliary
of potere, making any necessary agreements. This sounds complicated, but should
become clear if you read over the following example:

Maria ha potuto aprire la porta, ma non potuta entrare in casa.


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Maria was able to open the door, but couldnt go into the house.
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In the first half of the sentence potere is used with avere because it is followed by aprire

Italian: Grammar Supplement


which is an avere verb; in the second half potere is used with essere because it is followed
by entrare which is an essere verb, and potuto changes to potuta because Maria is feminine
singular.

If you dont understand this talk it over with your teacher. Now for some practice. Read
the following passage carefully a couple of times (see your teacher about any vocabulary
you dont know), then fill in the blanks with the correct parts of volere and potere given
below (you can use each part once only):

Il problema delle vacanze


Non mi parlare delle vacanze! un gran problema per me; prima di tutto io ______
andare in America ma mio marito non ______ andarci perch non ______ sopportare
gli Americani.

Gli ho detto cos:

- Senti, Carlo, lo sai bene che sono tanti anni che ______ andare in America ma non
______ andarci per il fatto del lavoro; non ______ organizzare qualcosa? So tu mi ______
bene allora ______ dimenticare i tuoi pregiudizi e andare subito in agenzia.

Mio marito non era daccordo.

- No, Teresa, io non ______ mai andare in America. ______ andare in qualche altro
posto, forse in Spagna o in Grecia. Ma c una soluzione facile; tu ______ andare da
sola in America, o forse i ragazzi ti ______ accompagnare.... s, sarebbe meglio cos,
______ divertirvi senza di me.

Che uomo! Forse un giorno riuscir a convincerlo.....

voglio, vuoi, ho voluto, vorranno, voleva, volevo, vorrei

potresti, pu, puoi, possiamo, potrete, sono potuta, potremmo

Show this work to your teacher once you have finished it.
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LUNIVERSIT ITALIANA DI PERUGIA:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


VOLERE/POTERE
ANSWER KEY

volevo, voleva, pu, ho voluto, sono potuta, potremmo, vuoi, potresti, possiamo, voglio,
vorrei, potresti, vorranno, potrete

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LA TELEVISIONE A: SUBJUNCTIVE TENSE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


The tenses most often used in English are in the indicative mood. This sounds strange,
but it is simply a grammatical term. There is another mood which is used much more
often in Italian than in English and this is called the subjunctive.

The subjunctive is used to express personal feelings or doubt or uncertainty, e.g.

If I were rich, I would buy lots of designer clothes.

In this sentence, were is subjunctive. It is used because the person speaking is not rich
therefore there is no certainty here - the person feels that this is what they would
probably do.

You will not need to know a great deal about the subjunctive at this stage, but there are
certain verbs which are very often used in this mood.

Essere: Avere:
sia siamo abbia abbiamo
sia siate abbia abbiate
sia siano abbia abbiano

You will most often see the third person singular and plural used. Look at these
sentences, translate them into English and show your teacher.

1. Penso che sia importante finire il lavoro.


2. Credo che siano molto antipatici.
3. Penso che lei abbia ragione.
4. Credo che loro abbiano caldo qui dentro.

The past subjunctive of these two verbs is very often used alongside the conditional tense.
For example:

Se io avessi tanti soldi, comprerei dei vestiti firmati. If I had a lot of money, I
would buy designer
clothes.

Se io fossi ricca, avrei almeno quattro macchine. If I were rich, I would


have at least four cars.

Essere: Avere:
fossi fossimo avessi avessimo
fossi foste avessi aveste
fosse fossero avesse avessero
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Put these sentences into English and show your teacher.

Italian: Grammar Supplement


1. Se avessi tempo, andrei allestero.
2. Se fosse possibile, comincerei domani.
3. Se avesse un po desperienza, sarebbe meglio.
4. Se avessero pi spazio, ci ospiterebbero.

There are some phrases which stand alone:

Fosse vero! If only it were true!


Che sia cos So be it!
Vada pure! On you go!

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LA TELEVISIONE A: SUBJUNCTIVE TENSE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


ANSWER KEY

1. I think its important to finish the work.


2. I believe they are very unpleasant.
3. I think that shes right.
4. I believe that they are hot in here.

1. If I had time I would go abroad.


2. If it were possible, I would start tomorrow.
3. It would be better if he/she had some experience.
4. They would put us up if they had more room.

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MILANO 2 - UNA NUOVA CITT SPORTIVA:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


IMPERSONAL VERBS
In this passage you will have seen the word bisogna used. This is known as an impersonal
verb. It can usually be translated with you/we have to or you/we must or it is necessary
to. It is used in the third person singular (the bit that goes with he/she/it).

Look at these examples. You will see that bisogna is followed by the infinitive. Try to
translate them into English and show your teacher.

1. Bisogna partire presto domani.


2. Bisogna riempire questo foglio.
3. Non bisogna mai esagerare.
4. Bisogna andare prima allaeroporto.

It can also be used in the imperfect tense when it means you/we had to or it was
necessary to. Try these examples:

1. Bisognava finire il lavoro prima delle sei.


2. Bisognava portarla a scuola subito.
3. Bisognava arrivare molto presto ogni mattina.

Other impersonal verbs are used with indirect object pronouns. Here are some examples:

mi piace/piacciono - I like (it/they is/are pleasing to me)


mi occorre/occorrono - I need (it/they is/are necessary to me)
mi sembra/sembrano - It/they seems/seem to me
mi pare - It seems to me
mi manca/mancano - I miss (it/they is/are missing to me)

Translate these sentences into English and show your teacher.

1. Ci sembra impossibile finire in tempo.


2. Le piacciono le macchine sportive.
3. Non mi pare una buonidea.
4. Perch bisogna sempre fare come vuole lui?
5. Vi occorre un aiuto?
6. Mi manca la mia famiglia.

Now try to put these into Italian:

1. We have to leave at nine oclock.


2. He doesnt like romantic films.
3. I need a new bag.
4. Do you think this is a good idea?
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5. She misses her boyfriend.


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MILANO 2 - UNA NUOVA CITT SPORTIVA:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


IMPERSONAL VERBS
ANSWER KEY

1. Well have to leave early tomorrow.


2. This form will have to be filled in.
3. You must never exaggerate.
4. Well have to go first to the airport.

1. We had to finish the job before 6.


2. We had to take him to school right away.
3. We had to arrive very early every morning.

1. It seems impossible for us to finish in time.


2. She likes sports cars OR You like sports cars (polite form).
3. I dont think its a good idea.
4. Why do we always have to do what he wants?
5. Do you need a hand?/Do you need help?
6. I miss my family.

1. Bisogna partire alle nove.


2. Non gli piacciono i film romantici.
3. Mi occorre una nuova borsa.
4. Ti pare che sia una buon idea?
5. Le manca il suo ragazzo.
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A CAVALLO:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


DIRECT / INDIRECT OBJECT PRONOUNS
We use these pronouns all the time in English. We use them when we dont want
to keep repeating ourselves. For example:

I see John every day. I see him at the bus stop.


Him is used to stop us repeating John.

I buy magazines every Saturday. I buy them with my pocket money.


Them is used to stop us repeating magazines.

Italian uses direct object pronouns in the same way.

Vedo John ogni giorno. Lo vedo alla fermata.

Ogni sabato compro delle riviste. Le compro con la mia paghetta.

You will notice that, in Italian, the pronoun comes before the verb .

Here is a list of the direct object pronouns:

mi - me ci - us
ti - you vi - you (pl)
lo/l - him/it (masc. sing.) li - them (masc. pl)
la/l - her/it (fem sing.) le - them (fem. pl)

Put these sentences into English and then show them to your teacher.

1. Carlo ci aiuta sempre.


2. Il mio ragazzo mi chiama amore.
3. Io le voglio invitare.
4. Ti vedo triste.
5. Anna non lo saluta mai.
6. La voglio accompagnare alla stazione.
7. Il professore vi guarda sempre.
8. Li vediamo ogni domenica.

Now try some yourself. Fill in the missing pronouns, translate them into English
and show them to your teacher.

1. Io non ........ voglio. (il regalo)


2. Lei ......... vuole vedere. (i ragazzi)
3. Loro ............ cantano sempre. (la canzone)
4. Tu ............ inviti alla festa? (le zie)
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You can also add the pronouns on to the infinitive, you simply remove the final e first, e.g.

Italian: Grammar Supplement


voglio vederlo lo
devo finirlili
bisogna aiutarla la

Try to translate these sentences into Italian and show your teacher.

1. I want to buy it.


2. I see him everyday.
3. We see her on Saturdays.
4. She buys them every week.

Now lets have a look at indirect object pronouns. These are often, but not always,
translated as to in English. For example:

Giovanni mi parla - Giovanni is speaking to me.


Francesca le scrive - Francesca is writing to her

You will soon learn which verbs take the indirect object pronouns. Here are some of the
most common:

parlare mandare domandare


scrivere dare inviare
telefonare rispondere

Here are the indirect pronouns:

1. mi - (to) me
2. ti - (to) you
3. le - (to) her
4. gli - (to) him or (to) them
5. ci - (to) us
6. vi - (to) you
7. loro - (to) them

These pronouns come before the verb, apart from loro which comes after.

Translate these sentences into English and show your teacher.

1. Lei ti parla sempre.


2. Lui ci d sempre un invito.
3. Gli vuoi dare il tuo indirizzo?
4. Le scrivo una volta al mese.
5. Mi risponde sempre male.
6. Vi telefonano spesso?
7. Mandi loro un invito?
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N.B. Nowadays it is acceptable to use gli as a substitute for loro
loro. So Gli mandi un invito?

Italian: Grammar Supplement


could mean Are you sending him an invite or Are you sending them an invite?

It is also possible to add these pronouns on to the infinitive, you simply remove the
final e first, e.g.

Non voglio mandargli lindirizzo.


Dovete darle il regalo.
Perch non vuole telefonarmi?

Now pick another reading passage and see if you can find any direct and indirect
pronouns. When you find them, write them down, translate them into English and
show your teacher.

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A CAVALLO:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


DIRECT / INDIRECT OBJECT PRONOUNS
ANSWER KEY

1. Carlo always helps us.


2. My boyfriend calls me my love.
3. I want to invite them.
4. You look sad to me.
5. Anna never says hello to him.
6. I want to accompany her to the station.
7. The teacher is always looking at you.
8. We see them every Sunday.

1. lo - I dont want it.


2. li - She wants to see them.
3. la - They always sing it.
4. le - Are you intending them to play?

1. Lo/La voglio comprare or voglio comprarlo/la.


2. Lo vedo ogni giorno.
3. La vediamo ogni sabato.
4. Li/Le compra ogni settimana.

1. She always talks to you.


2. He always gives us an invitation.
3. Do you want to give him/them your address?
4. I write to her / to you once a month.
5. He/she always answers me cheekily.
6. Do they telephone you often?
7. Are you sending them an invitation?
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RICHARD GERE: PERFECT TENSE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


You will have seen that this passage talks about things which have already happened.
We are going to look at one way of talking about the past - the perfect tense
tense. Lets have
a look at a few examples from the passage:

ha seguito ha studiato ha tentato ho interpretato

You will see that there is a definite pattern. The perfect tense always has two parts.

The first part is called the auxiliary


auxiliary; this means that it helps the main verb. The auxiliary
can be either the correct bit of avere or essere
essere. For now we are going to deal with verbs
which are helped by avere
avere.

What do we mean by the correct bit? This simply means the bit of avere which matches
up with the person or persons doing the action, e.g.

I ho we abbiamo
you hai you(pl) avete
he/she/it ha they hanno

So, lets say we wanted to write I bought or I have bought. We know the first part,
the auxiliary is going to be ho because thats the bit of avere which matches up with I.

Now for the second part. This is called the past participle
participle. We get this from the infinitive
of the verb we want to use. We want to say I bought so the infinitive we need is comprare
which means to buy.

To make this into a past participle we change the -are ending to -ato. So comprare becomes
comprato. Now we put both parts together and we get ho comprato which means I
bought or I have bought. Easy!

If you wanted to change this to say you bought all you need to do is change the ho for
the bit of avere which matches up with you. So, to say you bought you say hai comprato.

It is important that you make sure you understand this bit before we move on. Try this
mini-exercise and then ask your teacher to correct it:

Put these phrases into Italian:

1. I bought
2. Anna bought
3. We bought
4. They bought
5. Did you(pl) buy?
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So far so good. Now you may be wondering what you do with infinitives which dont end

Italian: Grammar Supplement


in -are. No problem. Most -ere endings change to -uto and most -ire endings change to -
ito, e.g.

vendere (to sell) = venduto finire (to finish) = finito

so................

Ho venduto = I sold Ho finito = I finished

Now try these examples and ask your teacher to correct them:

1. Paolo finished
2. We sold
3. They finished
4. The boys bought
5. Have you (sing.) finished?

You may have noticed that we have said that most of the endings for the past
participle follow the pattern above. Unfortunately this means that some of them
do not. The ones which follow the pattern are called regular and the ones which
do not are called irregular.

Here is a short list of infinitives which have regular past participles. Try to change
them into past participles and then show them to your teacher. Make sure you
find out what the verbs mean, and find out why vedere has an asterix!

cambiare cantare parlare sognare


pensare potere vedere* spremere
battere volere servire mentire
agire cucire

O.K. Now try to make up a few phrases using these verbs in the perfect tense.
(Dont forget you need 2 parts - the auxiliary and the past participle.)

What about irregular past participles? Well, you just have to learn them. Here is a short
list of some of the more common ones. Your teacher will help you to add to the list.

fare = fatto prendere = preso vedere* = visto spendere = speso

scrivere = scritto leggere = letto chiudere = chiuso aprire = aperto

dire = detto chiedere = chiesto rispondere =risposto mettere = messo

Now try to make up a few phrases in the perfect tense using these irregular past
participles. Show them to your teacher before you go on.

(Dont forget you need 2 parts - the auxiliary and the past participle.)
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Here are some sentences for you to practise with. Put the verb in brackets into the

Italian: Grammar Supplement


perfect tense. Be careful! Some past participles are regular, some are not - check
your list! When you have done this, translate the sentences into English. Show your teacher.

comprare
comprare) = Io ho comprato la macchina.
e.g. Io ____ la macchina. (comprare
I bought the car.

1. Noi ____ la casa ieri. (vendere)


2. Voi ____ i compiti? (finire)
3. Renzo ____ una lettera. (scrivere)
4. Francesca ____ il libro sulla tavola. (mettere)
5. Loro ____ idea. (cambiare)
6. Tu ____ troppi soldi. (spendere)
7. Giovanni e Lara ____ studiare linglese. (volere)
8. Io ____ un libro sabato. (leggere)
9. Noi ____ una festa a casa mia. (fare)
10. Lei ____ molto bene. (cantare)

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RICHARD GERE: PERFECT TENSE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


ANSWER KEY

1. Ho comprato
2. Anna ha comprato
3. Abbiamo comprato
4. Hanno comprato
5. Avete comprato?

1. Paolo ha finito
2. Abbiamo venduto
3. Hanno finito
4. I ragazzi hanno comprato
5. Hai finito?

cambiato, cantato, parlato, sognato, pensato, potuto, veduto OR visto, spremuto, battuto,
voluto, servito, mentito, agito, cucito

1. abbiamo venduto 2. avete finito 3. ha scritto 4. ha messo 5. hanno cambiato


6. hai speso 7. hanno voluto 8. ho letto 9. abbiamo fatto 10. ha cantato

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BORIS BECKER: PERFECT TENSE WITH ESSERE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


In the passage about Richard Gere we saw how to use the perfect tense with avere avere. We
also said that the auxiliary verb for this tense is either avere or essere
essere. We are now going
to look at essere
essere.

There are two or three examples of this in the passage:

stato nato morto

Once again you can see that we need two parts. This time the first part, the auxiliary is
the correct bit of essere. The correct bit simply means the bit of essere which matches
up with the person or persons doing the action , e.g.

1. I sono
2. you sei
3. he/she/it
4. we siamo
5. you(pl) siete
6. they sono

Before we go any further, we have to know which verbs take essere in the perfect tense.
Well, we just have to learn them! Its not as difficult as it sounds because mostly these are
verbs of movement. The rules for the formation of the past participle with verbs which
take essere are almost the same as for verbs taking avere - with one big difference - but
more of that later! Here is a list of the most commonly used verbs which take essere
along with their past participles. You will see that some of these are regular and some
irregular. Find out what these verbs mean.

andare = andato partire = partito morire = morto


arrivare = arrivato uscire = uscito crescere = cresciuto
entrare = entrato cadere = caduto diventare = diventato
essere = stato venire = venuto nascere = nato

So, if we wanted to say I went or I have gone all we need to do is...... choose the bit of
essere which goes with I which is sono and match it up with the past participle which is
andato. So, sono andato means I went.

This is correct but the person saying or writing this about himself would have to be male.
Why? Because past participles with essere have to be treated like adjectives. In other
words they have to agree with the person or persons doing the action. Stop here and
make sure you understand this bit. Ask your teacher if you are not sure.
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Lets practise. Try to put these sentences into English and then show them to your teacher.

Italian: Grammar Supplement


1. Marco andato al parco.
2. Maria partita alluna.
3. Io sono arrivato ieri.
4. Dove sei stata?
5. Giovanni e Paolo sono venuti al cinema.

Here are some more sentences for you to practise with. Put the verb in brackets into the
perfect tense. Be careful! Remember to make the past participles agree. When you have
done this translate the sentences into English. Show your teacher.

1. Io _____ con Paolo ieri. (uscire)


2. Tu _____ tanto! (crescere)
3. Noi _____ alle dieci. (partire)
4. Loro _____ lo stesso giorno. (nascere)
5. Francesca _____ in vacanza. (essere)
6. Renzo _____ appena in tempo. (arrivare)
7. Voi non _____ al mare? (andare)

Now you know as much as you need to know about the perfect tense. In passages which
you read and in essays that you write you will find a mixture of verbs which take avere
and verbs which take essere. You will soon become familiar with them - practice makes
perfect!

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BORIS BECKER: PERFECT TENSE WITH ESSERE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


ANSWER KEY

1. Marco went to the park.


2. Maria left at one o clock.
3. I arrived yesterday.
4. Where have you been?
5. Giovanni and Paolo came to the cinema.

1. sono uscito/a
2. sei cresciuto/a
3. siamo partiti/e
4. loro sono nati/e
5. stata
6. arrivato
7. siete andati/e

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COSA FARE IN FUTURO:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


CONDITIONAL TENSE
What would you do if you won the National Lottery? Would you go on a luxury holiday to
some exotic location? Would you buy the car of your dreams? Perhaps you would buy a
big house. Some people would give away a lot of their money, some of it to family, some
to charities. I know what I would do; I would tell nobody and that way I would not be
harrassed by the press and I would be able to think carefully about how I would spend
the money.

What do you notice about many of the verbs in the above paragraph? Answer: they have
the word would. Why? Because they all describe things people would do if some particular
event took place (in this case the National Lottery). This tense is called the conditional for
one simple reason; you can only do the thing described in a conditional tense verb if
something else happens to make it possible.

Here are some examples in Italian taken from the passage Cosa fare in futuro:

Mi piacerebbe continuare a studiare I would like to continue studying

Potrebbero esserci posti di lavoro There could be jobs there

Non ho grossissime ambizioni che I dont have great ambitions which


significherebbero grosse responsabilit would mean great responsibilities

In the first phrase, the writer would like to continue studying, but is not sure if this will be
possible. In the second phrase, there is the distinct possibility of a job being available if
jobs happen to be advertised. In the third phrase, the writer would have great
responsibilities only if she happened to be very ambitious.

The conditional tense can also be used in polite requests, e.g.

Vorrei un succo di frutta, per favore. I would like a fruit juice, please.

How do you make up the conditional tense in Italian? Basically, you have to know how to
use the future tense and especially how to make up a future stem. If you are unsure about
how to do this then re-read the grammar notes for Cosa farei come lavoro, paying special
attention to the list of irregular future stems. All you do to form the conditional in Italian
is to take the future stem of the verb you wish to use and add on these endings:

-ei, -esti, -ebbe, -emmo, -este, -ebbero

ei
e.g. comprare = comprer (future stem): comprerei sti
ei, compreresti ebbe
sti, comprerebbe
ebbe,
emmo
compreremmo este
emmo, comprereste ebbero
este, comprerebbero
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ei
mettere = metter (future stem): metterei esti
ei, metteresti ebbe
esti, metterebbe emmo
ebbe, metteremmo
emmo,

Italian: Grammar Supplement


este
mettereste ebbero
este, metterebbero

ei
partire = partir (future stem): partirei esti
ei, partiresti ebbe
esti, partirebbe emmo
ebbe, partiremmo
emmo,
este
partireste ebbero
este, partirebbero

ei
bere = berr (irregular future stem): berrei esti
ei, berresti ebbe
esti, berrebbe emmo
ebbe, berremmo
emmo,
berreste ebbero
este, berrebbero
este

Now for some practice. In this exercise fill in the blank with the correct part
of the conditional tense of the verb given in brackets and then show the
completed exercise to your teacher:

1. Se hai paura di andare a casa da sola Marco ti ______ compagnia. (tenere)


2. Io ______ qui durante le vacanze ma mia moglie desidera partire. (rimanere)
3. Mario non un bravo ragazzo, non ______ agire in questo modo. (dovere)
4. Noi ______ contenti se venisse a spiegarci la situazione. (essere)
5. Non possibile che lui possa trovarlo, non ______ dove cercare. (sapere)
6. Franca e Silvia ______ in America se avessero i soldi. (andare)
7. Io e Roberto ______ un altro posto, ma non tanto facile. (cercare)
8. Perch non venite da noi, ______ molto meglio che in ristorante. (mangiare)
9. S, vero, _______ di pi se tu avessi intenzione di comprare. (offrire)
10. Io ______ la partita stasera, ma purtroppo devo scappare. (seguire)
11. Mia sorella ______ tutto in banca, ma ha troppe spese questanno. (mettere)
12. Il tenore e il baritono ______ ma il basso ha perso la voce. (cantare)
13. ______ a casa tua ma sono proprio stanca oggi. (camminare)
14. Loro mi ______ senzaltro se succedesse una disgrazia. (aiutare)
15. Posso chiederti cosa ______ , questo romanzo o quellaltro? (leggere)
16. cos sfortunato che ______ tutto al primo gioco. (perdere)
17. Se possibile ______ avere una camera al primo piano. (preferire)
18. ______ subito ma purtroppo non vi posso iscrivere adesso. (cominciare)
19. Se non ci fossero i vigili urbani mio zio ______ la macchina qui. (parcheggiare)
20. Lui ______ un mucchio di soldi per avere quel quadro. (pagare)
21. Senti, Enrico, non ______ tornare un altro giorno? (volere)
22. Se non avessimo pranzato ora ______ fame. (avere)
23. Ascoltate, ragazzi, ______ bene di non aiutarlo. (fare)
24. Mio fratello ______ di s, ma non sicuro, vuole aspettare. (dire)
25. Noi ______ alluna, ma forse non sarete pi a casa. (venire)
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COSA FARE IN FUTURO: CONDITIONAL

Italian: Grammar Supplement


TENSE
ANSWER KEY

1. terrebbe 2. rimarrei 3. dovrebbe 4. saremmo 5. saprebbe 6. andrebbero


7. cercheremmo 8. mangereste 9. offriresti 10. seguirei 11. metterebbe
12. canterebbero 13. Camminerei 14. aiuterebbero 15. leggeresti 16. perderebbe
17. preferirei 18. Comincereste 19. parcheggerebbe 20. pagherebbe 21. vorresti
22. avremmo 23. fareste 24. direbbe 25. verremmo

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COSA FAREI COME LAVORO: FUTURE TENSE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


Read over these phrases which are all taken from the passage Cosa farei come lavoro.
They all use the future tense which is highlighted for you in bold type:

dovr mettermi a lavorare Ill have to start working


Avr un impegno fisso Ill have a full-time job
Le vacanze saranno molto brevi The holidays will be very short
forse potr andare in Thailandia perhaps Ill be able to go to Thailand
cercher di studiare Ill try to study
far delle traduzioni Ill do translations
i soldi che forse metter da parte the money that Ill perhaps save

As you can see, all these examples use the first person singular. The meaning should be
quite clear; the future tense is obviously used when we want to talk about things which
will happen some time from now. Now for some information on how the future tense is
made up:

Regular Verbs:

a. Start with the infinitive and make up a stem as follows:

-ARE verbs, e.g. parlare: drop final e and change final a to an e = parler
-ERE verbs, e.g. vendere: drop final e = vender
-IRE verbs, e.g. capire: drop final e = capir

b. Add on your future endings: -, -ai, -, -emo, -ete, -anno

c. Completed verbs:
parler, parlerai, parler, parleremo, parlerete, parleranno
vender, venderai, vender, venderemo, venderete, venderanno
capir, capirai, capir, capiremo, capirete, capiranno

d. Watch the following categories of -are verbs:

-ciare, e.g. cominciare; drop the i when making the stem = comincer
-giare, e.g. mangiare; drop the i when making the stem = manger
-care, e.g. cercare; add an h when making the stem = cercher
-gare, e.g. pagare; add an h when making the stem = pagher
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Now for some good and bad news: the good news is that every verb in Italian

Italian: Grammar Supplement


uses these same future endings. The bad news is that some verbs have irregular
stems. The only way to cope with this is to get to know them. Here is a list for you
to look at (only the first part of the future is given, as this is all you need to work
out the other parts):

Irregular futures:

1. ANDARE (to go) andr


2. AVERE (to have) avr
3. BERE (to drink) berr
4. CADERE (to fall) cadr
5. DARE (to give) dar
6. DOVERE (to have to) dovr
7. ESSERE (to be) sar
8. FARE (to do, to make) far
9. MORIRE (to die) morr
10. PARERE (to seem) parr
11. POTERE (to be able to) potr
12. RIMANERE (to remain) rimarr
13. SAPERE (to know) sapr
14. STARE (to stay) star
15. TENERE (to keep, to hold) terr
16. VALERE (to be worth) varr
17. VEDERE (to see) vedr
18. VENIRE (to come) verr
19. VIVERE (to live) vivr
20. VOLERE (to want) vorr
21. UDIRE (to hear) udr

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Now do this exercise and show the work to your teacher once you finish it. You have to

Italian: Grammar Supplement


replace the infinitive in bold type with the correct part of the future tense:

1. Domani Luigi portare la macchina.


2. Gli studenti arrivare la settimana prossima.
3. Noi partire per lItalia il mese prossimo.
4. Tu leggere molti libri.
5. Io finire i compiti domani sera.
6. Voi imparare una seconda lingua.
7. La professoressa insegnare questa materia.
8. Lui ripetere la frase.
9. Lei capire le nuove regole.
10. Io e Mario correre per unora.
11. Loro mangiare a casa dei nonni.
12. Io pagare con un assegno.
13. La signora cercare un altro albergo.
14. Noi fare il viaggio insieme.
15. Io essere a casa domani.
16. Tu potere aspettare fino a tardi.
17. Lui dare i regali ai bambini.
18. Carlo ed io dovere telefonare agli amici.
19. I ragazzi bere molte aranciate.
20. Lei volere ballare.
21. Teresa venire in ufficio pi tardi.
22. Voi non rimanere qui fino a dicembre.
23. Io li vedere domani.
24. Tu avere un posto molto importante.
25. Anna e Riccardo stare a casa tutto il giorno.
26. Loro sapere guidare in pochi giorni.

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COSA FAREI COME LAVORO: FUTURE TENSE

Italian: Grammar Supplement


ANSWER KEY

1. porter 2. arriveranno 3. partiremo 4. leggerai 5. finir 6. imparerete 7. insegner


8. ripeter 9. capir 10. correremo 11. mangeranno 12. pagher 13. cercher
14. faremo 15. sar 16. potrai 17. dar 18. dovremo 19. berranno 20. vorr 21. verr
22. rimarrete 23. vedr 24. avrai 25. staranno 26. sapranno

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FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF SCOTLAND 2:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


PLUPERFECT TENSE
In this passage there is a mixture of past tenses. We are going to look at the pluperfect in
some detail. In order to use this tense, you must be clear about what it means. The
pluperfect is used when you want to talk about something which had happened, e.g.

I had arrived just in time.


Mary had given me the book before she left.
We were happy because they had bought the car we liked.

In order to use this tense successfully, you will have to remind yourself about the perfect
tense. Both tenses have two parts. The auxiliary is either avere or essere and it is followed
by the past participle
participle.

However, in the pluperfect tense, the auxiliary has to be in the imperfect tense. You will
probably need to revise this too.

Here is the imperfect tense of avere and essere to help you.

avevo ero
avevi eri
aveva era
avevamo eravamo
avevate eravate
avevano erano

Which one do you use? The rule here is the same as for the perfect tense. If a verb takes
avere in the perfect tense, then it takes avere in the pluperfect as well. If it takes essere in
the perfect tense, then it is the same for the pluperfect.

Here are some examples. Try to translate them into English and show your teacher.

You will see that past participles of verbs taking essere are once again treated like
adjectives:

1. avevo preparato 5. ero andato


2. aveva detto 6. Anna era partita
3. avevamo parlato 7. eravamo entrati
4. avevano capito 8. erano cresciute
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Now try this exercise. If you dont understand something, ask your teacher.

Italian: Grammar Supplement


Translate the sentences into English when you have added in the pluperfect .

1. Io non ____ la lezione. (capire)


2. Marisa ____ di comprare il regalo. (dimenticare)
3. I due ragazzi ____ in ritardo. (arrivare)
4. Le due sorelle ____ alle nove. (partire)
5. Tu ____ il pranzo? (preparare)
6. Michele ____ il film. (vedere)
7. Noi ____ di telefonare dopo cena. (decidere)
8. Voi ____ al cinema con lui? (andare)

You wont use the pluperfect very often but you must be able to recognise it and
its good to be able to use it in essays alongside the perfect and imperfect.

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FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF SCOTLAND 2:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


PLUPERFECT TENSE
ANSWER KEY

1. I had prepared 2. he/she had said 3. we had spoken/talked 4. they had understood
5. I had gone 6. Anna had left 7. we had entered/gone in 8. they had grown (up)

1. avevo capito 2. aveva dimenticato 3. erano arrivati 4. erano partite 5. avevi preparato
6. aveva visto/veduto 7. avevamo deciso 8. eravate andati/e

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CALIFORNIA, PAESE DEI SOGNI:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


TOWNS, COUNTRIES, REGIONS,
CONTINENTS & NATIONALITIES
Read over the passage California, paese dei sogni and look carefully at any names of
towns, countries, regions, continents and nationalities mentioned. Here are some you
might find:

Stanford, San Francisco, Palm Springs, La California, ... degli Stati Uniti , ... della Sierra
Nevada, lo Stato dellOregon, ... col Messico, lEuropa, ... dallAsia, europeo, spagnole,
britanniche, americano.

Lets look a little more closely at these. Read over the following notes and make sure you
understand them.

TOWNS:

(a) The vast majority of towns and cities all over the world retain their original spelling
in Italian, e.g. Glasgow, Belfast, San Francisco, Melbourne, Cairo. There is, however,
a significant number which have Italianised spellings; the following list is not a
complete one but includes the most important:

Londra, Dublino, Edimburgo, Parigi, Marsiglia, Nizza, Lione, Berlino, Monaco,


Francoforte, Amburgo, Zurigo, Stoccolma, Praga, Varsavia, Mosca, Atene, Lisbona,
Gerusalemme, Pechino, Tokio.

You should be able to recognise most of these (see your teacher about any you
dont know). Watch Monaco; this can mean both the Principality of Monaco in the
South of France as well as Munich in Germany. To tell the two apart Italians
sometimes refer to Munich as Monaco di Baviera (Baviera means Bavaria, the region
in Germany where Munich is situated).

(b) The prepositions to, at and in are translated by a with the names of towns and
cities, e.g.

Io abito a Glasgow ma il mio amico abita a Dundee.


Questestate vado in vacanza a Parigi, poi a Nizza.
Ci sono tantissime cose da vedere a Londra.
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COUNTRIES, REGIONS & CONTINENTS:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


(a) Most countries, regions and continents are feminine, e.g. lItalia, la Francia,
lInghilterra, la Scozia, la Germania, la Spagna; la Toscana, la Lombardia; lAsia,
lEuropa. A few, however are masculine, e.g. il Portogallo, il Giappone, il Canada, il
Messico, il Belgio, gli Stati Uniti, il Lazio, il Veneto. Note that the definite article is
used, and can change when combined with some prepositions, e.g.

LItalia un paese bellissimo; secondo me, la regione pi bella dellItalia la


Campania e la mia citt preferita della Campania Napoli.

(b) The prepositions to and in are translated by in with the names of feminine countries,
regions and continents and by nel (or nell with vowels) with the names of masculine
countries, regions and continents. (Watch the United States: negli Stati Uniti.) Read
this example:

Nel corso della mia vita ho vissuto in Spagna, in Germania, nel Giappone, negli
Stati Uniti.

NATIONALITIES:

Nationalities act like normal adjectives, agreeing in number and gender (you may want
to revise this with your teacher). The only other thing you have to remember is that
nationalities begin with small letters. Read these examples:

A me piacciono i vini francesi


francesi, le birre tedesche
tedesche, e il whisky scozzese
scozzese.

A casa abbiamo un televisore giapponese


giapponese, una lavatrice italiana
italiana, due tappeti persiani
persiani,
tre vasi cinesi e un orologio svizzero
svizzero.

Make sure that you dont get confused between nationalities and the names of the
inhabitants of a country. Look at this example:

Gli abitanti dellItalia sono gli Italiani; quelli della Francia sono i Francesi; e quelli del
Canada sono i Canadesi.

You will have noticed that when you refer to the inhabitant of a country you have to use
the correct part of the definite article and a capital letter. Otherwise the same words are
used to describe both nationalities and the inhabitants of a country.
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Now for some practice.

Italian: Grammar Supplement


Ex. 1:
Complete the following sentences with the correct towns and countries given below. You
might have to brush up on your geography to get them all correct!

I. La capitale dellInghilterra ______


2. La capitale della Scozia ______
3. La capitale dellItalia ______
4. La capitale della Germania ______
5. La capitale della Russia ______
6. La capitale della Svezia ______
7. Zurigo si trova in ______
8. Canberra si trova in ______
9. Lisbona si trova in ______
10 Chicago si trova negli ______
11. Marsiglia si trova in ______
12. Amburgo si trova in ______
13. ______ una citt danese.
14. ______ una citt canadese.
15. ______ una citt egiziana.
16. ______ una citt norvegese.
17. ______ una citt francese.
18. ______ una citt austriaca.

Svizzera, Francia, Cairo, Londra, Mosca, Portogallo, Copenhagen, Lione, Roma, Vienna,
Oslo, Edimburgo, Berlino, Stoccolma, Australia, Stati Uniti, Germania, Toronto.

Ex. 2:
Fill in the gaps in the following sentences:

1. Mia zia abita ____ Pescia, un piccolo paese ____ Toscana.


2. Io sono nato ____ Scozia, perci sono ____
3. Gli abitanti ____ Finlandia sono i ____
4. Gli abitanti ____ Stati Uniti sono gli Americani.
5. ____ Puglia una regione ____
6. La Mercedes Benz una macchina ____
7. Il Belgio e lOlanda sono paesi ____
8. Il capoluogo ____ Lombardia Milano.
9. Vorrei andare un giorno ____ Giappone o ____Cina.
10. New York e San Francisco sono due citt ____

Show this work to your teacher once you finish it.


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CALIFORNIA, PAESE DEI SOGNI:

Italian: Grammar Supplement


TOWNS, COUNTRIES, REGIONS,
CONTINENTS & NATIONALITIES
ANSWER KEY

Ex. 1:
1. Londra 2. Edimburgo 3. Roma 4. Berlino 5. Mosca 6. Stoccolma
7. Svizzera 8. Australia 9. Portogallo 10. Stati Uniti 11. Francia
12. Germania 13. Copenhagen 14. Toronto 15. Cairo 16. Oslo 17. Lione
18. Vienna

Ex. 2:
1. a, in 2. in, scozzese 3. della, Finlandesi 4. degli 5. La, italiana
6. tedesca 7. europei 8. della 9. in 10. americane

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