Italian Grammar

By taking the time to understand how the Italian language works, you'll be able to speak Italian naturally, and read and write in Italian. We know this can be one of the more challenging parts of your course, and we’re here to help! You can browse the topics, do a search in the top right corner of this page, or start a new topic at the bottom. Don’t be shy!

Are we allowed to ask grammar questions?

In lesson 3:6  there's the sentence:  "Vi assicuro che i vostri sforzi saranno ricompensati."  It can translate as: "I assure you that your efforts will be rewarded."  Just wondering why the use of SFORZI and not SFORZATE, since the statement is addressed to more than one person. And also...

1 reply - Last post by Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor -
Apr 14, 2016

Nessuna / Nessuno

Buon giorno :-) Is the only difference between Nessuna & Nessuno one is m and the other f, or do they also mean something different. I realised in some of the tests one would mean nobody the other is none of us. Are they exactly the same meaning?

3 replies - Last post by Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor -
Apr 12, 2016

allora & poi

it seems they both mean "then" Any specifics when either can and can't be used? Thanks

2 replies - Last post by rigoletto -
Apr 6, 2016

Compound Prepositions

I would like to know if there is a lesson regarding the construction and usage of compound prepositions. There were some shown in an early lesson but it was not clear to me how they were constructed and the list was not comprehensive. I found a table in an Italian grammar book but was hoping the...

1 reply - Last post by Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor -
Jan 28, 2016

"entra in cucina la mattina."

Ciao, I'm wondering why "entra in cucina la mattina" isn't "entra in cucina alla mattina?" Otherwise it's "it enters the kitchen the morning." Is there a rule for when not to use a the preposition "a" when you mean to say "in the morning/afternoon/night"?

1 reply - Last post by Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor -
Jan 24, 2016

Lesson 12.5

Ciao. In the lesson 12.5 Expressing Doubt, Hope and Fear. You have two answers for the audio clip " I hope so". Spero di si - I hope so. Speriamo di si! - I hope so! Should the answer to Speriamo di si! be "Let's hope so!" (In the imperative?) Grazie

2 replies - Last post by grahame-r -
Jan 24, 2016

3.8 question

Would a better translation of  "Maria è venuta a trovarmi al lavoro" be "Maria came to find me at work?" or is vedere and trovare interchangeable?        

2 replies - Last post by daytripper90 -
Jan 24, 2016

"Porta il cappello!"

Ciao a tutti! So for lesson 3.1 I have two questions. Why is he using the formal form of portare? Seems like he should use porti since he's joking with a friend. Also, why "il cappello" for "your hat?" Wouldn't "il tuo capello," or "un cappello" make more sense? Grazie!

3 replies - Last post by Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor -
Jan 23, 2016

di + infinitive

Hi, I'm wondering when you have to put di or da before an infinitive. If "mangiare" or "telefonare" already means "to eat, to phone," why is the preposition "di/da" ever needed? Thanks, Michael

1 reply - Last post by Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor -
Jan 21, 2016

Questiong about Gerunds

Hey everyone, I'm wondering if "(stare) ____endo" is completely interchangeable with indicative? Such as stai leggendo vs legghi, sto lavorando vs lavoro, stiamo pensando vs pensiamo, etc. Thanks! Mike

2 replies - Last post by daytripper90 -
Jan 15, 2016

lui and la

So in the last lesson, we used LUI - as in," Nous devons lui acheter un cadeau."  We must buy her a gift. And in this one, they introduce the verb TUTOYER - -   in the example they say "You can use tu with her"  -" Vous pouvez la tutoyer" why isn't it, "vous pouvez lui tutoyer" - ? thanks!

1 reply - Last post by Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor -
Jan 11, 2016

Rule for definite articles.

Ciao, I'm wondering if there are some other exceptions for when we don't need definite articles before nouns. http://www.rocketlanguages.com/italian/learn/italian-articles/ ^That has a lot of great info, but it doesn't explain why there aren't def. articles in a sentence like "Un caffè con...

6 replies - Last post by Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor -
Jan 4, 2016

Where to put "Lei" in the sentence

If I'm using the polite form to address an individual, how do I know where to put their pronoun in the sentence? In "Lei è qui in vacanza? " it's is in the beginning, while in "Viene anche Lei?" it's at the end. What's the rule for this? Grazie, Mike

6 replies - Last post by daytripper90 -
Jan 3, 2016

"Parli italiano?" vs - "Parla l'inglese?

Buon giorno, According to this old post by Maria,  http://ロケット英語.jp/your-community/italian-grammar/italiano-vs-l-italiano, there isn't an article for names of languages when it follows "parlare." If this is the case, why is "Parla l'inglese?" phrased the way it is? Also, "Non...

2 replies - Last post by daytripper90 -
Dec 18, 2015

audio not always playing

audio not always playing - Module 9.7 - present conditional Part 2

1 reply - Last post by Rocket-Languages -
Oct 22, 2015

Accented letters.

Hello In the search section I typed in accents to get help. I'm looking for help with the punctuation (spelling) accents and not the speaking (regional) accents. Kind regards Paul

2 replies - Last post by Paul-R59 -
Sep 21, 2015

The different conjugate

Ciao a tutti! I have a question about the Conjugates of the word Mangiare. I would like to know if these are used often in spoken italian, and how to use them properly: Passato remoto io mangiai tu mangiasti lui mangiò What is the difference between passato prossimo: ho mangiato hai...

3 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Sep 21, 2015

Imperfetto vs Passato Prossimo

When does one use the imperfetto tense and when is the passato prossimo tense used?

1 reply - Last post by Peter-J55 -
Aug 22, 2015

Verbs in infinitive form

I am confused when to use "a" before a verb in its infinitive form. For example  Andiamo a vedere = Shall we go to see.... Vado in farmacia a prendere = Shall I go to the pharmacy to get... Vuoi andare = Do you want to go  Vuoi provare = Do you want to try Thanks  

3 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Jul 21, 2015

Problem with "Hear it" in Rocket Italian lesson 5.7

Two of the phrases in the "hear it" section do not play at all and show the following file names when I press the button to reveal the phrase. R_I_Activities_5.7.27.mp3 ​R_I_Activities_5.7.28.mp3 I'm viewing the page in Chrome Version 43.0.2357.124 m running Win 8.1, 64-bit.  

5 replies - Last post by marieg-rocket languages -
Jul 2, 2015

The weird thing that the vowels do?

Hi guys, I need some help. I'm trying to learn a lot of Italian in not a lot of time, and part of doing that is reading a lot of Italian, but whenever I try and read, I can't figure out that weird thing that happens when you have a word that ends in a vowel, and the next word begins in a...

0 replies - Last post by keelan111-- -
Mar 31, 2015

Speaking the date

Come si dice? "Today is Friday, January 30, 2015." È corretto? "Oggi è venerdì, trenta gennaio duemila quindici." Grazie!

1 reply - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Mar 10, 2015

A closer approach to numbers

Hi, Maria. As mere curiosity but also because of the variety of answers I have got to these questions I really have many doubts about how numbers are written in Italian. First, I've found in some sources that in every number with the ending -tre, we must have an acute accent (e.g. veintitré,...

0 replies - Last post by Carlos-M35 -
Feb 1, 2015

QUAL è ... troncamento, non elisione

Un saluto a tutti voi. Insegno italiano a diversi stranieri e oggi ho acquistato il corso perché è un valido ausilio alle mie lezioni. Raccomando ai miei studenti Rocket Italian, perché lo trovo più completo dei vari testi in commercio. Complimenti! Nella trascrizione del dialogo 6.1 vi è...

1 reply - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Jan 27, 2015

essere and stare

I have just gone back to do a review on some of the very basic lessons and find some confusion still with essare and stare. From the lesson "The verb essere ('to be") is mainly used when we describe ourselves as: "I am tall" or "I am slim". The verb stare (for "to be", "to stay") is mainly used...

2 replies - Last post by Jon-D10 -
Jan 15, 2015

per favore vs per piacere

I did post this earlier today, but it doesn't seem to have come up. When would you use per piacere compared to per favore? Many thanks, Jon

0 replies - Last post by Jon-D10 -
Jan 7, 2015

use of articles

why parlare italiano but studare l'italiano? article use in one but not in the other.

3 replies - Last post by Jim-M2 -
Jan 4, 2015

Language and Culture Lessons

I am finding that the language and culture lessons are much more difficult than the corresponding audio lesson. For example in my course I haven't covered pass tense or future tense yet, however many of the grammar lessons use both these tenses. My question is how much should I really be...

2 replies - Last post by Fran-N -
Dec 19, 2014

ci completiamo

Ciao Maria, alle lezione 19.4 c'è una frase che ha detto "ci completiamo bene l'uno con l'altro." potrebbe scrivere "loro o si completano l'uno con l'altro"? Buona giornata Grazie Fran

0 replies - Last post by Fran-N -
Dec 5, 2014

(some) when to use different forms

Hello I am going over lesson 8.7 In the Section (some) you have, di and its various forms, qualche, and alcuni. My question is how do I know when to use each variation of some. Sorry the answer is probably in the lesson but I am not getting it. The masc /fem/plural I get. Tom

2 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Nov 5, 2014

Lesson 9.8 Quiz

I don't understand the question: Sara ____ da' semipro un consiglio. We're supposed to choose ci or ne. I read the whole lesson, and I don't understand why the answer is "ci". Can someone explain this to me? Thanks you, Gianna

0 replies - Last post by Janice-M1 -
Oct 26, 2014

1.6 Survival Phrases Vengo da and Sono di

Hi, In lesson 1.6 Survival Phrases and Pronunciation we studied Vengo da and Sono di. Is it correct to say that I always use Vengo da when referring to a country? And Sono di for a city. Would Vengo da New York be incorrect grammatically?

2 replies - Last post by darrenma007 -
Oct 24, 2014

Can't find lesson 1

I bought the premium edition back in 2010. I am only now using this program today. However it seems to be starting at 8.1 which doesn't strike me as the first lesson. My dashboard seems to be out. Could you please reset it for a first time user. Thanks Myfanwy

3 replies - Last post by Rocket-Languages -
Oct 2, 2014

definite article

Lesson 1 Megacard Beginners has a card for "lo studio" however the presented Italian sentence uses "la studio". Which usage is correct. Thanks

2 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Oct 2, 2014

audio cd's for Italian

Are there any available cd's to reinforce pronunciation, grammar, and just listening - for use in the car? Thanks

2 replies - Last post by Rocket-Languages -
Jul 24, 2014

Use of "Quei lavori"

In lesson 2.12 Workplace the phrase "Quei lavori " is used as an example and does not match any other of the examples for This and That. Is it a special case that I have forgotten? I am confused. Thanks, Sheldon Arey

3 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Jul 24, 2014

buonasera

what's the different between fare, fate and fatelo ? and when I can use each on of them ?

4 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Jul 24, 2014

prepositions

Hello I would just like a clarifications on some prepositions. Is the plural form of "un" "degli" and the plural form of "uno" "dei" or is it the inverse. I remember is a table of prepositions Singular : un uno

2 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Jun 22, 2014

prepositions

Hello I would just like a clarifications on some prepositions. Is the plural form of "un" "dei" and the plural form of "uno" "degli" or is it the inverse? I remember this was in a table of prepositions that I stumble upon a while ago, but sure I'm not if it is correct. Singular : un ...

1 reply - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Jun 22, 2014

alimento vs. cibo

Could someone please explain when one would use alimento instead of cibo and vice versa? Thank you.

5 replies - Last post by John-H8 -
Jun 10, 2014

Mi vs. Mio/Mia

Hey, sometimes I'm unsure whether or to use "mi" or "mio (I'm a guy)". I thought that mi=I and mio=my, but i've heard mi being used as my as well (for example "Mi ragazzo, my girlfriend). Any clarification on this?

3 replies - Last post by John-H8 -
Jun 10, 2014

Sono versus Sto

Ciao! When should I use "sono" and when should I use "sto"? For instance, "I am tired" is Sono stanco. Why wouldn't I say Sto stanco? And for "I am well" it is Sto bene. Why wouldn't I say Sono bene. Is there a way for me to know for certain when to use "sono" and when to use...

12 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Jun 9, 2014

Capital letter....

Hello everybody!!! if you need to write a letter to your Italian friend or family member, do you know when to use the CAPITAL LETTER? Here a quick guide for you of the common situations ... - at the beginning of the sentence (after the dot point) - names and surname of people, animals,...

0 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Apr 10, 2014

Why capital 'D'?

Why is there a capital 'D' in the sentence, 'Tu Di dove sei?' Just came across this in one of the 'P' tests.

2 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Apr 10, 2014

when to use.

when would use dinanzi or davanti.

1 reply - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Mar 12, 2014

sono or io

How do I know when to use "sono" and when to use "io" for "I am"?

11 replies - Last post by o.h. -
Feb 22, 2014

piccolissimi versus piccolissimo

In lesson 1.9 on "Likes & Dislikes," in the discussion of superlatives, the example is: piccolo --> piccolissimi. Is the plural. Is piccolo used with both plural and singular masculine nouns, or would piccoli be used with plural masculine nouns?

5 replies - Last post by o.h. -
Feb 22, 2014

veloce / velocemente

Ciao, I have some problem with a sentence in Lessons 3.7 Comparing Things. The sentence is this: "Noi viaggiamo meno veloci in treno che in aereo." The word "veloce" is an adjective, and as such change according to gender and plural, which it also does in this sentence. But as I understand...

9 replies - Last post by o.h. -
Feb 22, 2014

Italian grammar book

What grammar book would you recommend? I always feel it helps to have a dedicated grammar book.

1 reply - Last post by John-H8 -
Feb 7, 2014

Ho capito adesso

If "Non ho capito" is past tense meaning "I did not understand", I'm confused about the meaning and tense of "Ho capito adesso". This means "I get it now", but isn't "capito" past tense - how can you get something in the past tense and say "now" in the same sentence? Shouldn't it be "capisco...

3 replies - Last post by Maria-DiLorenzi -
Jan 27, 2014

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