The Italian Conditional Tense

Weilà raga! I hope you liked the 6th episode of Grammar Basics! What I taught in that video is definitely Advanced Italian, so if you're feeling a little confused, its totally understandable!

Before I write everything out I explained in the video, I just want to share with you guys a trick that I used when studying this verb tense for the first time. I used to always refer to it as the "Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda Tense." That's how I remembered when to use Potere and Dovere as the helping verbs.

I always remembered that with Would, there's no helping verb. But with Could, C is at the beginning of the alphabet, but its corresponding verb in Italian starts with the letter P, for Potere, a letter towards the end of the alphabet. Then with Should, S is at the end of the alphabet, and its corresponding verb in Italian starts with a letter at the beginning of the alphabet, D, for Dovere. I hope this makes sense and is able to help some of you guys out.

So here's what I went over in the video:

Let's begin with Would.

Here are the ARE, ERE, and IRE verb endings for saying WOULD in Italian:

ARE & ERE share the same verb endings:

io - erei                noi - eremmo

tu - eresti              voi - ereste

lui/lei - erebbe     loro - erebbero

 

IRE verb endings:

io - irei                noi - iremmo

tu - iresti              voi - ireste

lui/lei - irebbe     loro - irebbero

 

Let's now conjugate MANGIARE, a regular ARE verb in the conditional tense:

io mangerei - I would eat

tu mangeresti - you would eat

lui/lei mangerebbe - he/she would eat

noi mangeremmo - we would eat

voi mangereste - you all would eat

loro mangerebbero - they would eat

 

Just note: though Mangiare is a Regular ARE verb, you do eliminate the I after the G when conjugating it, this happens in some other verb tenses also, such as the Future Tense.

 

Now, onto saying COULD. We use POTERE as the helping verb, its an irregular verb, and we conjugate it in the conditional tense. Here are the verb endings for POTERE and also DOVERE (which we'll get to later on):

io - rei                noi - remmo

tu - resti              voi - reste

lui/lei - rebbe     loro - rebbero

 

Potere:

io potrei - I could

tu potresti - you could

lui/lei potrebbe - he/she could

noi potremmo - we could

voi potreste - you all could

loro potrebbero - they could

 

Here's how you say COULD EAT:

io potrei mangiare - I could eat

tu potresti mangiare - you could eat

lui/lei potrebbe mangiare - he/she could eat

noi potremmo mangiare - we could eat

voi potreste mangiare - you all could eat

loro potrebbero mangiare - they could eat

 

To say SHOULD, you conjugate DOVERE in the Conditional Tense, in a similar way to POTERE:

io dovrei - I should

tu dovresti - you should

lui/lei dovrebbe - he/she should

noi dovremmo - we should

voi dovreste - you all should

loro dovrebbero - they should

 

Here's how you say SHOULD EAT:

io dovrei mangiare - I should eat

tu dovresti mangiare - you should eat

lui/lei dovrebbe mangiare - he/she should eat

noi dovremmo mangiare - we should eat

voi dovreste mangiare - you all should eat

loro dovrebbero mangiare - they should eat

 

Here's how you conjugate a Regular IRE verb (Dormire - to sleep) in the conditional tense. The verb endings are show above, but they're very similar to the ARE and ERE verb endings:

io dormirei - I would sleep

tu dormiresti - you would sleep

lui/lei dormirebbe - he/she would sleep

noi dormiremmo - we would sleep

voi dormireste - you all would sleep

loro dormirebbero - they would sleep

 

Here's how you conjugate a REGULAR ERE (LEGGERE - to read) verb in Italian, it follows the same verb endings as I showed above for ARE verbs:

io leggerei - I would read

tu leggeresti - you would read

lui/lei leggerebbe - he/she would read

noi leggeremmo - we would read

voi leggereste - you all would read

loro leggerebbero - they would read

Here's the video:

As always, remember to SPREAD THE LOVE! :)

Tom

The Many Uses of Ci in Italian

Weilà weilà raga! This post correlates with my video on the many uses of Ci in Italian. (A link for the video is at the end of this post). This tricky part of Italian grammar that gives a lot of Italian learners trouble. We'll be covering the majority of the most common uses of Ci.

We're going to begin with C'è (there is) & Ci Sono (there are). As a little extra for you guys, c'è is actually a contraction of ci + è, but the thing is, you never use them alone like that. 100% of the time you will always say "c'è".

Here are some examples:

C'è una persona qui = There is a/one person here

Ci sono molte persone qui = There are many people here 

In the video, I spent a few moments talking about pronunciation. In some Italian accents, the "s" in persona can sound like a "z". However, keep in mind that the standard pronunciation of the word is with that typical "s" sound that we English speakers are familiar with. (As I am the type of person who adopts the accent of whoever I'm around, I have said "perZona" before.)

The only time you should pronounce your "s" like a "z" is when saying the verbs sbagliare (to make a mistake) and svegliare (to wake up).

Now let's move on to see how Ci is used as a pronoun. We're going to begin with Ci as a Reflexive Pronoun.

Ci svegliamo alle 7 (sette) = We wake up at 7 am

The reason this is reflexive is because "svegliarsi" is a reflexive verb, it means "to wake oneself up." So literally, the sentence above means "we wake ourselves up at 7 am." And how do we know we're talking about 7 in the morning and not the evening? Well, you could add "nella mattina" (in the morning) at the end of the phrase. Or it's just implied to be 7 in the morning given that in Italian and Italy, a 24-hour clock system is widely used. So 7 in the evening would be 19.00 (as they write it in Italian).

Now we're going to look at Ci as a Direct and Indirect Object Pronoun. When it is a Direct Object Pronoun (DOP), it means simply "us". When it is an Indirect Object Pronoun (IOP) it means "to us".

DOP: Ci conosci? = Do you know us?

IOP: Ci porti il libro? = Can you bring us the book?/Are you bringing us the book. (In the video I didn't mention this other possible translation with "are" at the beginning.)

The difference here lies in how in the first example, the action is directly affecting the subject. Whereas in the second, it is indirectly affecting the subject.

We're now finally going to look at Ci used as an adverb, to replace things such as proper names of places, locations, and phrases such as "there" and "to it", to name a few.

Here's a statement: Devi venire in Italia! = You have to come to Italy!

Response: Sì, ci voglio venire! Or you could say, Sì, voglio venirci! Both of these mean "Yes, I want to come!" But think of it as "Yes, I want to come THERE" where THERE implies/takes the place of TO ITALY.

Why are there two ways of saying this? Because in Italian, unless you're using a compound verb tense with auxiliary verbs, when you have two verbs next to each other, the first will get conjugated and the second will not. When a verb is not conjugated it's referred to as being/remaining in its infinitive form. And whenever a verb is in its infinitive form, you can tack on DOPs and IOPs onto the end of them. I find this to be an easier way to form a statement in Italian because the ordering of words is more similar to English than with having the pronoun before the verb. Keep in mind, though, that this can only be done in the kinds of situations as in the example above.

Here's another example of Ci used as an adverb.

Question: Ma, vieni alla mia festa? / Ma, verrai alla mia festa? = So, are you coming to my party?

Response: Sì, ci vengo! = Yes, I'm coming!

Generally speaking, ma in Italian means but. However, given this context, I feel it's more appropriate to translate it as so. I've mentioned this in past posts and videos, sometimes in Italian you can use the present tense to also refer to the future. As you can see with our example. I provided an example doing just that and a literal, more specific one that explicitly deals with the future tense.

There are few other ways you can use Ci in Italian, but I think this is a good place to leave our explanation for now. Keep on practicing and you'll see how this will all sink in. You'll be speaking Italian like a total boss in no time!

Here's the video that correlates with this post:

 

Always remember to SPREAD THE LOVE!

Tom

The Italian Gerundio

Weilà weilà raga! How's it going guys? I hope this post finds you well! This post correlates with the 19th Episode of Learn Italian (Grammar Basics 5) where we cover the Italian Gerundio. This is the Italian equivalent to English verbs that end in -ING.

This is a personal favorite area of Italian. I like to use it a lot, however, it isn't the most popular verb form in Italian. It is certainly used and is common, but you will find that Italians do use the Present tense to talk both about things they do and are doing. There are even times when Italians use the Present tense to talk about the future. But that's a different post ;)

Here's how you form the Gerundio in Italian: Verb Stare in Present tense + main verb with             -ANDO or -ENDO suffix (verb ending).

So let's first take a look at the verb Stare (to be) conjugated in the Present tense.

Stare - to be (in the Present tense)

io sto - I am

tu stai - you are

lui/lei sta* - he/she is

noi stiamo - we are

voi state - you guys/all are

loro stanno* - they are

*Keep in mind that in Italian both people and objects have genders. So you'll find both the third person singular and third person plural (he/she & they pronouns) conjugations are used to refer to both people and objects.

As I've also mentioned in previous posts and Grammar Basics videos, oftentimes you'll find Italians tend to conjugate verbs using egli & ella in the place of lui & lei (sometimes they'll just use egli) and essi in the place of loro. Keep in mind that these are just traditional forms of the pronouns. They are not used in spoken or informally written Italian.

One last thing, then I promise we'll move on, as you've probably noticed, I said that Stare means To Be in English. But what about the verb Essere? Here's the thing with many Romance Languages, they tend to have 2 verbs for To Be. Generally speaking, Stare is used in Italian for conditions that are current and likely to change, hence why we use it with the Gerundio - it's for things currently taking place that are not permanent. Conversely, Essere is used to permanent things, conditions that are not likely to change. Hence why we use it for the Passato Prossimo (Grammar Basics 2), which is the tense used for the past, when actions started and ended in the past.

Okay, now we can finally move on! So now that we know how to use Stare in the present tense, we can now see how to actually say something in the Gerundio! It's very simple. You're going to love it.

For all -ARE verbs, remove the -ARE and put in its place -ANDO.

For all -ERE and -IRE verbs, remove the -ERE or -IRE and put in their place -ENDO.

Let's take a look at the verb Parlare (to talk) in the Gerundio. Remember we'll be conjugating our helping/auxiliary verb Stare in the Present tense and the verb Parlare, because it ends in -ARE will have the new ending -ANDO.

Parlare - to talk

io sto parlando - I am talking

tu stai parlando - you are talking

lui/lei sta parlando - he/she is talking

noi stiamo parlando - we are talking

voi state parlando - you all are talking

loro stanno parlando - they are talking

What I love about Grammar Basics 5 is that we start to see examples included in the videos. For the other Grammar Basics videos, refer to their corresponding blog posts to see examples after each verb conjugation.

Here's the example I gave in the video:

Io sto parlando al telefono = I am talking on the phone

(Check out my video on Prepositions and Prepositional Articles to learn more about that "al" that's in the example above.)

Remember that Italian, like Spanish but unlike French, does not require the use of pronouns. Think of it this way, because every conjugation is unique, the pronoun or simply the subject is implied. 

Now let's move onto an -ERE verb and an -IRE verb, we're going to look at them at the same time because in the Gerundio they're conjugated the same way.

Chiedere - to ask

io sto chiedendo - I am asking

tu stai chiedendo - you are asking

lui/lei sta chiedendo - he/she is asking

noi stiamo chiedendo - we are asking

voi state chiedendo - you all are asking

loro stanno chiedendo - they are asking

 

Stanno chiedendo alla professoressa = They are asking the professor

 

Pulire - to clean

io sto pulendo - I am cleaning

tu stai pulendo - you are cleaning

lui/lei sta pulendo - he/she is cleaning

noi stiamo pulendo - we are cleaning

voi state pulendo - you all are cleaning

loro stanno pulendo - they are cleaning

 

Tu stai pulendo la tua camera da letto = You are cleaning your bedroom

 

Just to note - in the Present tense, Pulire is an -ISC verb. That means when it get's conjugated alone it looks like this:

Pulire - to clean (in the Present tense)

io pulisco - I clean

tu pulisci - you clean

lui/lei pulisci - he/she cleans

noi puliamo - we clean

voi pulite - you all clean

loro puliscono - they clean

So despite the fact that Pulire is indeed an -IRE verb, it also falls into the category of -ISC verbs. There aren't that many in Italian, but they do pop up on occasion and I just wanted to make you aware of them should you ever want to use Pulire in the Present tense or should you come across it.

Finally, in the video we go over the irregular verb, Fare (to do/make). I'd like to first show it to you in the Present tense and then I'll show you the verb conjugated in the Gerundio.

Fare - to do/make (in the Present tense)

io faccio - I do/make

tu fai - you do/make

lui/lei fa - he/she does/makes

noi facciamo - we do/make

voi fate - you all do/make

loro fanno - they do/make

Now, the reason why Fare is irregular is because it follows a slightly different pattern to getting conjugated than regular -ARE verbs. Fare comes from the Latin verb Facere, also meaning to do/make, so if that helps to shed some light as to why the letter C makes an appearance in our conjugations, there you go :)

Now let's look at Fare in the Gerundio.

Fare - to do/make (in the Gerundio)

io sto facendo - I am doing/making

tu stai facendo - you are doing/making

lui/lei sta facendo - he/she is doing/making

noi stiamo facendo - we are doing/making

voi state facendo - you all are doing/making

loro stanno facendo - they are doing/making

Here's one of the reasons why I love the Gerundio so much, look how easy our conjugation of a generally highly irregular verb, Fare? It's always Facendo in the Gerundio.

 

Here's the example I gave in the video for Fare in the Gerundio:

Io sto facendo una foto = I am taking a photo

 

Keep in mind that foto is short for fotografia (photograph), hence why we said "una photo". Even if a word is shortened, the gender remains the same.

In Italian, you can also use the verb scattare, which can be used to say to snap or shoot a photo. It's a regular -ARE verb.

So that is everything for my explanation on the Italian Gerundio! As always, I hope you found we covered this material in a clean and easy-to-understand way. As with anything new, it can take time to get used to. Remember, you're on a language learning diet. The Gerundio is a new food that you're bringing on in. So give it time to get used to. Soon enough you'll come to love it just as much as I do :)

Here's the video that correlates with this post:

Always remember to SPREAD THE LOVE!

Tom

Click here to see my playlist on YouTube of all of my Learn Italian videos in order!

The Italian Imperfect Tense

Weilà weilà raga!! After someone commented on my Imperfect Tense video, I realized I never wrote a blog post with notes! It's only been about a year and a half since I uploaded it.....well better late than never, right? ;) Or as you can say in Italian meglio tardi che mai! (I've linked the video at the end of this post.)


So when do we use the Imperfect Tense or the Imperfetto? Whenever you want to talk about things that you used to do. That, my friends, is the trick to understanding when to use this tense. HOWEVER - you can also use this tense, AT TIMES, as another equivalent of the SIMPLE PAST in English (I ate, I called, You said, etc - you catch my drift). I'll get into that later on.

What I'd like to do first is show you a few random phrases with verbs conjugated in the Imperfetto and then I'll go through all of the standard conjugations that you can find in my video.

L'estate scorsa, andavo sempre al cinema con i miei amici

- Last summer, I used to always go to the movies with my friends

 

Mia figlia amava quando le portavo a vedere i film di Harry Potter.

- My daughter used to love it when I'd take her to see the Harry Potter films.

 

Now that you've gotten a little taste of what's to come, let's jump right into some conjugations!

I'm going to show you two ways of remembering the verb endings. Here's the most straight-forward way:

 

ARE verb endings:

io - avo

tu - avi

lui/lei - ava

noi - avamo

voi - avate

loro - avano

 

ERE verb endings:

io - evo

tu - evi

lui/lei - eva

noi - evamo

voi - evate

loro - evano

 

IRE verb endings:

io - ivo

tu - ivi

lui/lei - iva

noi - ivamo

voi - ivate

loro - ivano

 

What's the other way, you ask? Just eliminate the A, E, & I from the verb endings and you're left with this:

io - vo

tu - vi

lui/lei - va

noi - vamo

voi - vate

loro - vano

 

So if you're not one for doing a lot of memorizing, just remember those 6 verb endings and remember that for ARE verbs you put an A in front of the ending; for ERE verbs you put an E in front of the ending, and for IRE verbs you put an I in front of the ending. See how it works? Just trying to show you more than one way of remembering the verb endings ;)


Alrighty then, let's now conjugate some ARE, ERE, and IRE verbs using these verb endings we listed out above!

 

Mangiare - to eat (one of my favorite verbs in Italian - have you noticed I use it all the time in my videos?)

io mangiavo - I used to eat

tu mangiavi - you used to eat

lui/lei mangiava - he/she used to eat

noi mangiavamo - we used to eat

voi mangiavate - you guys/all used to eat

loro mangiavano - they used to eat

 

Let's now take a look at a phrase (still don't know why I didn't include one in the video!! But at least I'm making up for it now):

 

Mia figlia, Anna, mangiava un cornetto ogni mattina prima di andare a scuola

My daughter, Anna, used to eat a croissant every morning before going to school

 

Leggere - to read

io leggevo - I used to read

tu leggevi - you used to read

lui/lei leggeva - he/she used to read

noi leggevamo - we used to read

voi leggevate - you guys/all used to read

loro leggevano - they used to read

 

Now - before going any further, I'd like to teach you guys how to conjugate AVERE & ESSERE in the Imperfetto because you'll find yourself using them a lot in this tense. Fortunately, Avere is regular in the Imperfetto. But as always, Essere is irregular. Don't be frightened by the thought of irregular verbs, though. Being irregular just means a verb doesn't follow the typical, cookie-cutter pattern that all regular verbs follow. But they still follow some "inspired" pattern, as I like to put it.


Avere - to have

io avevo - I used to have

tu avevi - you used to have

lui/lei aveva - he/she used to have

noi avevamo - we used to have

voi avevate - you guys/all used to have

loro avevano - they used to have

 

Essere - to be

io ero - I used to be

tu eri - you used to be

lui/lei era - he/she used to be

noi eravamo - we used to be

voi eravate - you guys/all used to be

loro erano - they used to be

 

Okay, back to a phrase with Leggere used in the Imperfetto.
Mia mamma mi leggeva i libri di Disney ogni notte

My mom used to read Disney books to me every night

You could also say,

Quando ero piccolo, mia mamma mi leggeva i libri di Disney ogni notte

- When I was little, my mom used to read Disney books to me every night

Quando avevo cinque anni, mio padre mi leggeva i libri di Harry Potter.

- When I was five years old, my dad used to read Harry Potter books to me.

 

Now, why does "ero" mean "was" and not "used to be"? That's because it wouldn't make sense in English to use "used to" twice in a sentence. When making translations, we oftentimes find ourselves seeking equivalents that make the most sense in a language. Because it is not the literal translation that always matters, but the message that we're trying to get across.

Dormire - to sleep

io dormivo - I used to sleep

tu dormivi - you used to sleep

lui/lei dormivi - he/she used to sleep

noi dormivamo - we used to sleep

voi dormivate - you guys/all used to sleep

loro dormivano - they used to sleep

 

I miei cani dormivano per tutta la notte quando erano piccoli

- My dogs used to sleep through the whole night when they were small/little

 

In the video I gave this example:

Il bambino piangeva sempre quando era piccolo / Piangeva sempre il bambino quando era piccolo

- The baby used to always cry when he was little

 

So this is my lesson on the Italian Imperfect Tense! I hope you guys learned a lot and enjoyed this post! Have fun learning Italian and always remember to SPREAD THE LOVE!! :)

- Tom

p.s. I used Indirect and Direct Object Pronouns in my examples. If you need help on those, check out these two videos - I'll also link the blog posts below!

Direct Object Pronouns

 

Blog post: http://weilatom.blogspot.com/2015/03/italian-direct-object-pronouns.html

Indirect Object Pronouns:

 

Blog post: http://weilatom.blogspot.com/2015/08/learn-italian-indirect-object-pronouns.html

 

The Italian Future Tense

Weilà raga! Welcome to Learn Italian - Grammar Basics 3 - The Future Tense. The Future Tense is one of my personal favorites, one of the main reasons being because its so simple - well, at least once you get to know it a little better, you'll probably feel the same. Let's be real, The Passato Prossimo (what I taught in Grammar Basics 2) is a pretty heavy verb tense full of hefty grammar rules and many things to remember. So with respect to the Passato Prossimo, the Future Tense is a walk in the park. ;)

Here's everything that I went over in the video:

As explained in Grammar Basics 1 & 2, all verbs in Italian have one of three verb endings: ARE, ERE, or IRE. And depending on what a verb ends in will dictate how the verb gets conjugated in every verb tense of the language.

For both ARE & ERE verbs, in the Future Tense they share the SAME verb endings! This is great as it makes it easier to remember verb endings when there aren't so many. The verb endings in the Future Tense for ARE & ERE verbs are as follows:

io (I) - erò

tu (you, informal, singular) - erai

lui/lei (he/she) - erà

noi (we) - eremo

voi (you, plural) - erete

loro (they) - eranno

Remember that for lui & lei, sometimes in written Italian you can see EGLI in the place of LUI, and ELLA in the place of LEI. That's because Egli and Ella are the conservative, traditional ways of saying Lui & Lei.

Another thing to note (something I haven't yet mentioned in a video), is that not only does LEI mean SHE in English, but its also the FORMAL form of YOU. And when you write it, you must write it with a capital L. Otherwise it will simply mean "She". If this is too confusing for you to remember right now, don't fret over it. I'll be sure to include it in one of my next Learn Italian videos.

And ESSI is the conservative, traditional form of LORO.

IRE verb endings in the Future Tense are very similar to the ARE & ERE ones:

io - irò

tu - irai

lui/lei - irà

noi - iremo

voi - irete

loro - iranno

Here is an ARE verb, PARLARE, which means To Talk, conjugated in the future tense.

Keep in mind that ALL phrases and words in the Future Tense in Italian can get translated into English as that you WILL do something or that you ARE GOING TO DO something. In the video and here, I will be only showing the WILL forms of the translation.

Parlare - to talk

io parlerò - I will talk

tu parlerai - you will talk

lui/lei parlerà - he/she will talk

noi parleremo - we will talk

voi parlerete - you all will talk

loro parleranno - they will talk

For an ERE verb I chose LEGGERE, which means To Read:

Leggere - to read

io leggerò - I will read

tu leggerai - you will read

lui/lei leggerà - he/she will read

noi leggeremo - we will read

voi leggerete - you all will read

loro leggeranno - they will read

For an IRE verb, I chose SENTIRE which means To Hear or To Feel. It depends on how the word is used in context to say whether Sentire means To Hear or To Feel. Here's how it gets conjugated:

Sentire - to hear

io sentirò - I will hear/feel

tu sentirai - you will hear/feel

lui/lei sentirà - he/she will hear/feel

noi sentiremo - we will hear/feel

voi sentirete - you all will hear/feel

loro sentiranno - they will hear/feel

And that is pretty much it for conjugating regular verbs in the Future Tense of Italian. Not too bad, right? Just follow along with these notes as you rewatch this video a couple of times. I'm sure with a couple of rewatches and checking out these notes, the Future Tense will seem much clearer to you if it is a bit hazy and confusing now.

 

Best of luck and definitely check out Grammar Basics 1 & 2 and all of my other videos in my "Learn Italian" series. Feel free to check out all of my many videos in my "Imparare l'Inglese" series as well. Those are the videos in which I teach English for Italian speakers. But I've heard from many native English speakers who watch my videos that they even find my Imparare l'Inglese videos to be helpful to them for learning Italian as well, so definitely give them a watch! (They're all on my channel).

Don't forget to SUBSCRIBE to my channel if you like what you see and if you'd like to get notified when I publish a new video!

Here's the video that correlates with this post:

 

Always remember to SPREAD THE LOVE!

Tom

The Passato Prossimo

Weilà raga! Hope all you guys are doing well today!

In this post we'll be going over the Italian Passato Prossimo - which is the equivalent of the English Present Perfect Tense. Simply put, its when you want to say "I have eaten" - in the phrase we have a Pronoun, a Helping Verb, followed by a Main Verb in the Past Tense. Its also when you're talking about something that has happened in the recent past and it has an effect on the present.

Also note that this verb tense is also used to say things in the Simple Past. In other words, HO MANGIATO means I HAVE EATEN and also I ATE.

All Italian verbs have 1 of 3 verb endings: ARE, ERE, and IRE. Depending on what verb ending a verb has will determine how it gets conjugated.

All ARE verbs in the Passato Prossimo will no longer end in ARE but ATO. So, for example, MANGIARE, an ARE Verb which means TO EAT, will become, MANGIATO. You're just substituting ATO for ARE. Then, all you need is your optional pronoun followed by the correlating conjugated form of MANGIARE's Helping Verb AVERE in the Present Tense.

Here's how you conjugate AVERE (to have) in the present tense. Its an irregular verb so all of its conjugated forms don't follow a clean-cut pattern. With irregular verbs, its all about memorization.

Avere - to have

io - ho             (I have)

tu - hai            (you have)

lui/lei - ha        (he/she has)

noi - abbiamo   (we have)

voi - avete       (you al have)

loro - hanno     (they have)

Italians typically when talking about written Italian will refer to LUI/LEI as EGLI/ELLA, but no one actually speaks EGLI & ELLA, LUI & LEI are the spoken pronouns.

Same thing goes for ESSI and LORO. In written Italian, the Italians use ESSI for THEY and in spoken Italian they'll use LORO.

So if I want to say I HAVE EATEN, I need to say IO HO MANGIATO. In this phrase we have IO the pronoun that means I, HO which is the IO conjugated form of AVERE in the Present Tense, followed by out main verb MANGIARE in its Passato Prossimo form, MANGIATO. Therefore we have: IO HO MANGIATO, I HAVE EATEN - its a literal translation.

So, all together its:

io ho mangiato (i have eaten)

tu hai mangiato (you have eaten)

lui/lei ha mangiato (he/she has eaten)

noi abbiamo mangiato (we have eaten)

voi avete mangiato (you all have eaten)

loro hanno mangiato (they have eaten)

All ERE verbs will change to UTO in the Passato Prossimo.

So for VENDERE which means TO SELL, it will become VENDUTO. All we need to do, the only hard part, is remembering the conjugations of AVERE in the present tense, for that's the only thing that changes when we're talking about different subjects.

Vendere - to sell

io ho venduto (I have sold)

tu hai venduto (you have sold)

lui/lei ha venduto (he/she has sold)

noi abbiamo venduto (we have sold)

voi avete venduto (you all have sold)

loro hanno venduto (they have sold)

IRE verbs change to ITO. So DORMIRE (to sleep) will become DORMITO:

Dormire - to sleep

io ho dormito (I have slept)

tu hai dormito (you have slept)

lui/lei ha dormito (he/she has slept)

noi abbiamo dormito (we have slept)

voi avete dormito (you all have slept)

loro hanno dormito (they have slept)

For INTRANSITIVE VERBS, otherwise known commonly known as WALKING VERBS, they all use ESSERE (to be) as they're helping verb. And whenever you have ESSERE in a phrase, you must be mindful of Gender and Plurality.

So, for IO, TU, and LUI/LEI conjugations, if you are a boy or are talking about a boy - the main verb will end still in O. If you are a girl or are talking about a girl - the main verb will end in A.

For NOI, VOI, and, LORO conjugations, if you are talking either about a group of boys or a group of boys and girls - the main verb will end in I. If you are talking about a group of only girls - the main verb will end in E.

So, for ANDARE (to go) which becomes ANDATO in the Passato Prossimo, here's how it gets conjugated:

Andare - to go

io sono andato/a (I have gone m/f)  --- M/F stands for Masculine/Feminine

tu sei andato/a (you have gone m/f)

lui/lei è andato/a (he/she has gone) --- lui can only work with andato and lei can only work with andata.

noi siamo andati/e (we have gone m/f)

voi siete andati/e (you all have gone m/f)

loro sono andati/e (they have gone m/f)

And that's it! Hope this helps and best of luck to you!! :)

Here's the video that correlates to this post:

 

Always remember to SPREAD THE LOVE!

Tom

The Italian Present Tense

Weilà! I hope you are doing good today! This blog post correlates to my video Learn Italian Ep.04 - The Present Tense | Grammar Basics 1 in which I go over the Italian pronouns and conjugating verbs in the Present Tense.

So to begin, here are the Italian Pronouns:

io = I

tu = you (informal)

lui/lei (egli/ella) = he/she

noi = we

voi = you all/you guys (plural you)

loro = they

Just to note a few things:

  • Egli & Ella mean he & she respectively, however they are never used in Spoken Italian. You may only come across these two pronouns in Italian literature.
  • Voi is the plural pronoun for you. Now what does that mean? Basically, if I'm talking to "all of you" or "you guys," I will use "voi" in Italian. The pronoun tu is used for just when you're talking to 1 person and you're addressing them as you.
  • Lei means she, but when written with a capital L, it is the Formal You in Italian. When you speak, obviously you can't speak in capital letters, but if you call someone Lei, be it a man or a woman, you are being formal with them. I'll get into this in a different blog post because it requires more explanation.

So let's move on!

In Italian there are 3 types of verbs: ARE, ERE, & IRE verbs. How do you know whether a verb is an ARE, ERE, or IRE verb? Just check out its last 3 letters, they'll be ARE, ERE, or IRE. Depending on what a verb ends in, that will tell you how it needs to get conjugated, depending on the verb tense of course.

Mangiare is a ARE verb because its last 3 letters are ARE. Mangiare means "To Eat" in English.

To conjugate any verb, we eliminate the last three letters of the verb, in this case ARE, and then we plug in a new ending depending on the pronoun. For each pronoun there is a different verb ending.

Here are the pronouns with their correlating verb endings for all Regular ARE verbs:

io - o          noi - iamo

tu - i           voi - ate

lui/lei - a     loro - ano

(The reason for separating the Pronouns into 2 columns is to distinguish between the Singular Pronouns and the Plural Pronouns. When I was studying Italian, this is the way I always wrote down the verb endings and conjugations, maybe it will help you guys to see it written out this way too).

Regular verbs are verbs that follow this cookie-cutter way of conjugating. That means that no matter the verb, as long as it ends in ARE, we just use these endings I provided above and BOOM, you've just conjugated!

So let's see how all this actually works, let's conjugate MANGIARE:

I'll give you a formula: MANGIARE - ARE = MANGI. All I did was eliminate the last three letters of the verb, the ARE.

MANGI is now our ROOT or our STEM, let's call it. And now we just plug in the verb endings above to say "I eat, you eat, he/she eats," and etc.

Here's another formula using the root of the verb and a verb ending from above. I'm going to use the verb ending O that comes from the pronoun IO which means I. That way I can say I EAT:

MANGI + O = MANGIO.

So we now have MANGIO which means I EAT.

I'm now going to show you the whole verb conjugated:


To better help you to see the pattern, here are the Pronouns and the Regular ARE verb endings again:

io - o          noi - iamo

tu - i           voi - ate

lui/lei - a     loro - ano


Mangiare = To Eat

io mangio = I eat

tu mangi = you eat*

lui/lei mangia = he/she eats

noi mangiamo = we eat

voi mangiate = you all eat

loro mangiano = they eat

*because there's already an 'i' at the end of Mangiare once you eliminate the ARE, you don't add in another 'i'.

Let's conjugate another ARE verb just to reinforce what we just did. Let's conjugate PARLARE which means TO TALK:

Parlare = To Talk

io parlo = I talk

tu parli = you talk

lui/lei parla = he/she talks

noi parliamo = we talk

voi parlate = you all talk

loro parlano = they talk

 

Is it starting to make sense? Remember, all we're doing is eliminating the last three letters of each verb, the ARE, and we're plugging in the endings that correlate with the pronouns.

You see, in English as we do is keep the verb relatively the same and we just change the pronoun. In Italian, you change the pronoun and the verb. You can see what I mean by the translations in English of the Italian verbs that we conjugated above.

Now let's check out ERE and IRE verbs. They're relatively similar to how we conjugate ARE verbs. Now that we have the basics down of what pronouns are and how when you conjugate you're just eliminating the last 3 letters of a verb and swapping in new verb endings depending on the pronoun, this should be a bit easier ;)

Let's first see ERE Regular verb endings:

io - o           noi - iamo

tu - i            voi - ete

lui/lei - e     loro - ono

As you can see, the verb endings are very similar to the ARE verb endings, only some things changed. Its going to be this way for IRE verb endings too.

So let's conjugate the Regular ERE verb, CHIEDERE which means TO ASK:
 

Chiedere = To ask

io chiedo = I ask                    

tu chiedi = you ask                

lui/lei chiede = he/she asks    

noi chiediamo = we ask

voi chiedete = you all ask

loro chiedono = they ask

 

Here are the IRE Regular verb endings:

io - o            noi - iamo

tu - i             voi - ite

lui/lei - e      loro - ono

 

Let's now conjugate the IRE verb DORMIRE, which means TO SLEEP:

Dormire = To Sleep

io dormo = I sleep

tu dormi = you sleep

lui/lei dorme = he/she sleeps

noi dormiamo = we sleep

voi dormite = you all sleep

loro dormono = they sleep

And violà! You've successfully learned the Italian Pronouns and how to conjugate verbs in the Present Tense! You should give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done!

Now, as this all may be very new for you, I suggest taking your time with this. Watch the video that correlates with this blog post a couple of times. And the beauty of a video is that you can pause, rewind, and fast forward as much as you like. I'm sure you'll get this down after checking out the video and taking a look at this blog post a couple of times. As with everything, practice makes perfect!


Best of luck to you, and when you feel you're ready to move on, check out the other videos in my Grammar Basics and Learn Italian Series! I'll put all the links down below.

Video that correlates with this post, Grammar Basics 1:

 

Playlist:

Learn Italian Videos In Chronological Order

 

Always remember to SPREAD THE LOVE!

Tom

Consigli per Imparare l'Inglese

Weilà raga!

 

Come state? Spero bene!

 

C'è una domanda che ricevo più di tutte: "Hai qualche consiglio per imparare bene l'inglese?"


Questa domanda è molto importante. In questo "blog post" (messaggio in un blog), cercherò di condividere con voi alcune cose che ho fatto (e che a volte ancora faccio) per imparare e migliorare il mio italiano; sperando che possiate fare qualcuna di queste cose e magari avere dei risultati positivi.

 

Devo dirvi che non c'è una risposta sola a questa grande domanda. Ognuno è diverso, ed è possibile che ci saranno delle cose che leggerete che io ho fatto che non funzioneranno per alcuni di voi.

 

Ma è anche importante notare che è necessario imparare un po' della grammatica prima di fare le cose che vi sto per dire. Non tutti possono accendere una TV e guardare un film in inglese senza sottotitoli in italiano ed essere capace a distinguere parole che vengono dette e riconoscere verbi in diversi tempi verbali. Di solito, se uno non sa l'alfabeto, le regole grammaticali di base, parole del vocabolario, i numeri, gli stagioni, i giorni della settimana, e ecc, è difficile apprendere una lingua facilmente. Per lo più, è necessario sapere le basi della lingua inglese prima.

 

Allora adesso andiamo avanti con i miei consigli. Spero che siate seduti nelle sedie comode, perché state per leggere un romanzo ;)

 

Per me, aiuta tanto guardare la TV in italiano. Non importa se guardo una puntata dei Cesaroni venerdì sera o una puntata di TG1 lunedì sera. Può essere qualsiasi programma o tipo di video che vi interessa. Ho sentito che ci sono tantissimi video su un sito che si chiama "YouTube"...ma non ho mai visitato quel sito, dunque....haha no dai ovviamente sto scherzando! ;) Su YouTube si può trovare dei video di qualsiasi tipo, di qualsiasi argomento. Quindi se non trovate qualcosa sulla TV, andate online.

 

Il punto è di guardare un video, un programma, o un film che volete guardare, e dove ci sono madrelingua inglesi che parlano nel loro modo normale. E non importa se questi madrelingua inglesi sono americani, inglesi, irlandesi, australiani, canadesi, ecc - tutti madrelingua inglesi parlano la stessa lingua.

 

Se non capite quello che dicono nel video dopo una volta sola, riguardate il video un paio di volte. Io ho preso una stagione dei Cesaroni su DVD e ho guardato gli episodi tante volte. Così, se non capivo quello che gli attori dicevano dopo una sola visualizzazione di un episodio - semplicemente perché non ho mai sentito le parole che dicevano, o perché parlavano troppo veloce per me - dopo alcune visualizzazioni, ho saputo quello che stavano per dire prima che parlavano, e ho saputo come l'episodio finisce, quindi ho potuto vedere come parole vengono usate, perché vengono usate, e cosa significano. E' tutto di vedere azioni insieme a parole. Questo è come noi impariamo da bimbi cosa significano parole della nostra madrelingua. Si vede un oggetto o si fa un azione, e l'oggetto e l'azione hanno dei nomi o delle parole che vengono associate con loro. Ed è così che impariamo le parole e come si usano.

 

Mi ricordo una volta nella mattina, deve essere un anno fa...forse due...beh non importa - il punto è che ho visto un programma sulla Rai che si chiama, "La Prova del Cuoco," con Antonella Clerici. E stavano preparando la pasta con la farina, sempre chiamando la farina, "farina." Beh, si, questo è naturale perché la farina si chiama la farina. Ma io non lo sapevo! Sapevo che si dice "flour" in inglese, ma non come si chiama in italiano! Dopo ho visto queste persone che continuavano a chiamare quello che lo so si chiama "flour," "farina," ho imparato una parola nuova! E adesso ogni volta che dico "farina" penso a quella puntata di "La Prova del Cuoco." Anche se non mi ricordo le altre cose che hanno cucinato haha

 

Un'ultima cosa con i video in inglese, se troverete che è molto difficile per voi di guardare un programma televisiva in lingua originale, cominciate con i film di Disney. Tutti lo sanno le loro storie, tutti lo sanno come finiscono, e usano parole povere in quei film, quindi non è male come idea cominciare con i video per i bimbi prima di andare avanti con i video "avanzati" diciamo. Forse cominciate con i sottotitoli e poi no. Come volete.

 

Allora, è anche importante leggere in inglese. Quando avevo tempo libero, non mi importava dove ero, potevo essere nella biblioteca a scuola sul computer quando avevo una pausa tra i corsi, leggevo sempre in italiano. Giornali, riviste, e novelle online, non mi importava, basta che mi mantenevano in attenzione ed erano interessanti, ero contento haha. Ma ricordate, queste sono cose che ancora faccio oggi qualche volta. Oggi mi trovo più nei siti per i giornali, tipo la Repubblica ;) E ancora se non capisco qualcosa, provo a trovare la giusta traduzione per le parole, così imparo parole nuove e le metto in memoria. Mi potete sempre scrivere sulla Pagina Ufficiale Facebook (http://facebook.com/weilatom) se troverete delle parole che non capite. Per me è niente spiegare qualcosa dell'Inglese.

 

Lo stesso è un po' con la musica. Se ascolto ad una canzone italiana e non capisco qualcosa, scrivo le parole che sento o vado online per leggere il testo, e poi domando ad un amico che parla italiano aiuto con il significato della parola. Uso Google Translate pure, se sapete come si usa quel traduttore, si può trovare delle traduzioni giuste. Ma di solito un traduttore online funziona bene per parole, non frasi. E naturalmente con le canzoni, le ascoltiamo perché ci piacciono. E dopo alcune volte che ascoltiamo alle canzoni, il testo rimane nella mente. E questo è un altro modo per imparare e ricordare le parole, e anche vedere come si usano correttamente - grammaticalmente e contestualmente.

 

Scrivere è anche importante. Così, a volte è più facile vedere gli errori che si fa quando si scrive. A volte quando uno parla, si può dire qualcosa scorrettamente ma nessuno può sentire l'errore. Ma quando si scrive, si vede di tutto. Lo so che ci sono degli errori qui in questo blog post. Ma se non provo a scrivere, e se nessuno mi aiuta se vede che ho fatto un errore, non si impara niente. Dobbiamo provare a fare il nostro meglio e aiutarci in questo mondo :)

 

E poi viene la cosa che tanti odiano - PARLARE! Se non è possibile parlare con un madrelingua inglese spesso, fate video come faccio io su YouTube, ma solo per voi, nessuno deve guardarli. Così sentirete come parlate, la vostra intonazione, e la vostra pronuncia. Di solito è più facile capire parole che dirle. Ma con un po' di pratica, tutto diventa facile. Come si dice in inglese "Practice makes perfect!" ("la pratica porta alla perfezione" in italiano), e "You learn from your mistakes" ("sbagliando si impara"). C'è anche un app gratis che amo ed uso ogni giorno, si chiama HelloTalk. E' un'app per trovare un amico di penna per imparare le lingue. Vi aiutate a vicenda e credo sia un'app fantastica!

 

Ci sono altri modi, tanti altri modi. Ma se scrivessi tutti i modi, per parlare inglese, che penso, questo post diventerebbe troppo lungo, se non lo è già adesso! Per il resto, sono sempre alla vostra disposizione se servite una mano con l'inglese o un consiglio. Ci sono sempre i miei video che continuo a pubblicare su YouTube, e adesso questi blog post che farò per aiutarvi. Potete provare a fare alcune cose che ho scritto in questo blog post e anche trovare altri modi che funzionano bene per voi. Come ho detto prima, ognuno è diverso e tutti imparano in diversi modi. Ma almeno spero che con questo blog post ho potuto aiutare almeno uno di voi! Vi auguro una buona giornata e tante belle cose! Siete tutti fantastici e se siete arrivati fino a qui, dopo aver letto tutto questo messaggio, ho solo una cosa per dirvi, SIETE GRANDI!

 

Always remember to SPREAD THE LOVE!

 

Tom

Clicca qui per leggere la versione inglese di questo post

Advice for Learning Italian

Weilà raga! Hey there guys! If you are new to the Txxytu/Weilà Tom Family I'd like to take a moment to personally welcome you! By way of introduction, I'm Tom and I run the YouTube channel Weilà Tom - a channel where you can find videos of me teaching Italian for English speakers and English for Italian speakers.

I say "weilà" at the beginning of all of my videos. Simply put, "weilà" means something a long the lines of "Hey There," its just a way of greeting someone in Italian slang.

 

Learning a new language is like starting a new diet, that's how I like to look at it. Just as with any diet, learning a language takes commitment and dedication.


I also feel learning a language is like running a marathon. To learn more about this and for even more advice on learning Italian, check out a blog post I wrote for FlashSticks, the link will be at the end of this post! :)

 

So here are some tips I'd like to share with you all about how you can learn and improve your Italian, or any new language you'd like to learn really:

The first thing is you've got to learn the basics of the language. That means you need to start with learning the days of the week, numbers, colors, vocabulary words, verbs, verb tenses, pronouns, all that good stuff. Then once you've got yourself a nice solid foundation, then you can incorporate some of the fun stuff.

Some of the fun stuff include listening to music and trying to translate the lyrics, reading news/magazine articles and books in Italian - try reading the Italian language translation of your favorite book, that way seeing as you're probably already familiar with the storyline, you won't find yourself getting lost as much; read Italian websites of your liking, write in Italian to improve your skills - whether it be by improving your vocabulary, spelling, and/or speed at writing and thinking on your feet in Italian; learn how to express yourself and your feelings through speech and writing, watch television programs or YouTube videos in Italian, and anything else that you fancy and enjoy doing to further help yourself to learn and improve your Italian.

For me, it was important to learn how to joke in Italian, so I learned some funny words and phrases, and because I liked them, they were easy to remember. I also always tried to find out how to say what I always say in English, just in Italian. And I don't mean I just did literal translations of things I'd say, because literal translations a lot of the time don't always work out the way you'd like. I mean finding out how to say what I wanted to say the Italian way, the way Italians say what I'm trying to express and get across to someone else. That way I could still talk like me, just in another language.

And I look at other languages just as I would a slang word in English. With any slang, you need to learn how to put words, sounds, and emotions together so that you're keeping everything consistent and so that you're making sense when you speak - its the same with learning a new language. Sometimes when you look at a language as being "a foreign language" it makes it far more daunting than it actually is. So just be like me, look at Italian as being a set of new words of a slang, and just with slang words, its all about learning what they mean and knowing how to use them properly.

Among all of the things I listed above, I'd also like to tell you guys that its important to try different methods and ways of learning Italian and go with the ones that work best, the ones that enable you to retain information in the best ways possible. That way you never look at learning Italian as an annoying, boring, or even extremely difficult thing, but rather something fun and exciting.

So best of luck to you all! Should you ever have any particular questions on Italian, feel free to write to me on my Facebook Page and definitely check out my YouTube Channel where I've got plenty of videos in both Italian and English, and I always upload new ones! Even though the majority of my videos are in Italian teaching English, a lot of my English speaking viewers tell me all the time that they watch my videos in Italian to learn Italian and that they're very helpful. Hopefully you'll feel the same!

All of my videos are grouped into 2 playlists: those to learn Italian and those to learn English. The videos are placed in chronological order and titled with episode numbers. That way you can follow along and begin with the most basic of concepts and eventually move onto the more advanced ones.

 

Click here to go to my Learn Italian video playlist.

Click here to go to my Imparare l'Inglese (Learn English) video playlist.

 

Click here to read the FlashSticks blog post where I talk about how learning Italian is also like running a marathon

Click here to read the Italian version of this post

 

Always remember to SPREAD THE LOVE! Have a great day! Cheers! :)

Tom