Italian Grammar

Pronunciation

cachechicocu
gagheghigogu
sciascescisciosciu
scascheschiscoscu

When followed by h:

The letter i in the groups cia, cio, ciu; gia, gio, giu; scia, scio, sciu is not pronounced; it is a written way of representing the consonant sound.

Both e and o have two different sounds: open and closed. For example e has an open sound [ε] as in English pet and a closed sound [e] as in English hey. The letter o has open sound [ɔ] as in English or and a closed sound [o] as in English oh. Both open and closed sounds are represented in written Italian by the same letter e or o. The open vowels only occur in stressed syllables; when unstressed, vowels are always closed. The distinction between the two sounds is not very important in spoken Italian. Where necessary, the open and closed vowels can be distinguished by using the grave accent for the open sound è, ò and acute accent for the closed é, ó. However this is not done in normal written Italian.

the consonant clusters gl [ʎ], gn [ŋ], sci [ʃ] are always given a strong sound in the middle of a word, although this is not represented in writing: figlio [fiʎʎo], ogni [oŋŋi], lasciare [laʃʃare]

Words with the stress on the last syllable are also written with an accent mark, as: perché, città, caffè, università, libertà

Definite Article

m.sg.il/lo/l'

lo before nouns starting with: s+consonant, i+vowel, x, y, z, gn, ps, pn

l' before a vowel Note lo iodio

pl.i/gligli for nouns taking l' or lo in the singular
f.sg.la/l'l' before a vowel. Note la iarda
pl.lel' is used rarely before a vowel

In Italian, the definite article must always be used before the name of a language, except when the verbs parlare (to speak) or studiare (to study) directly precede the name of the language; in those cases, the use of the article is optional. Parlo italiano (I speak Italian), Parlo bene l’italiano (I speak Italian well)

The definite article is used before the days of the week to indicate a repeated, habitual activity. Domenica studio (I’m studying on Sunday), Marco non studia mai la domenica (Marco never studies on Sundays)

Indefinite Article

m.un/unouno before nouns starting with s+consonant, i+vowel, x, y, z, gn, ps, pn
f.una/un'un' before a vowel

Demonstrative

singularplural
masc.fem.masc.fem.
questoquestaquestiqueste
quelloquellaquelliquelle
codestocodestacodesticodeste

Contractions: Article + Preposition

illol'laiglile
aalalloall'allaaiaglialle
dideldellodell'delladeideglidelle
dadaldallodall'dalladaidaglidalle
innelnellonell'nellaneineglinelle
susulsullosull'sullasuisuglisulle
concolcollo (archaic)coll' (archaic)colla (archaic)coicogli (archaic)colle (archaic)

Personal Pronouns

1st Person2nd Person3rd Person
sg.pl.sg.pl.m. sg.f. sg.m. pl.f. pl.
Subjectionoituvoilui (egli, esso)lei (ella, essa)loro (essi)loro (esse)
Stressed Objectmenoitevoiluileiloroloro
Stressed Reflexivemenoitevoi
Accusativemicitivilolalile
Dativemicitiviglilegli,lorogli,loro
Dat. + Acc.meceteveglie-glie-glie-glie-

Stressed Reflexive: me (stesso/a), noi (stessi/e)

Possessive Adjectives

Personm.f.
sg.pl.sg.pl.
sg.1stil mioi mieila miale mie
2nd (fam.)il tuoi tuoila tuale tue
2nd (pol.)il Suoi Suoila Suale Sue
3rdil suoi suoila suale sue
pl.1stil nostroi nostrila nostrale nostre
2nd (fam.)il vostroi vostrila vostrale vostre
2nd (pol.)il Loroi Lorola Lorole Loro
3rdil loroi lorola lorole loro

Possessive adjectives and pronouns look the same but adjectives go with a noun and precede it while pronouns replace the noun.

The definite article drops for family memebers in the singular and in some idiomatic phrases.

Possession is also indicated with the preposition di

Presente

-are-ere-ire
ioamocredodormo
tuamicredidormi
lui / lei / Leiamacrededorme
noiamiamocrediamodormiamo
voiamatecredetedormite
loroamanocredonodormono

Passato Prossimo (Transitive)

-are-ere-ire
ioho parlatoho vendutoho capito
tuhai parlatohai vendutohai capito
lui / lei / Leiha parlatoha vendutoha capito
noiabbiamo parlatoabbiamo vendutoabbiamo capito
voiavete parlatoavete vendutoavete capito
lorohanno parlatohanno vendutohanno capito

Passato Prossimo (Intransitive)

-are -ere -ire
iosono arrivato/asono caduto/asono partito/a
tusei arrivato/asei caduto/asei partito/a
lui / lei / Leiè arrivato/aè caduto/aè partito/a
noisiamo arrivati/esiamo caduti/esiamo partiti/e
voisiete arrivati/esiete caduti/esiete partiti/e
lorosono arrivati/esono caduti/esono partiti/e

Condizionale Presente

take any verb, drop the final -e in its infinitive form, and add an appropriate ending—endings are the same for all three conjugation groups of verbs. The only spelling change occurs with -are verbs, which change the a of the infinitive ending to e.

-are-ere-ire
ioparlereicredereisentirei
tuparleresticrederestisentiresti
lui, lei, Leiparlerebbecrederebbesentirebbe
noiparleremmocrederemmosentiremmo
voiparlerestecrederestesentireste
loro, Loroparlerebberocrederebberosentirebbero