19.2 ricevetti

drewster March 30, 2017, 8:52 pm
Ciao Lucia,

In 19.2 there's a line:

La biografia di Manzoni, un libro che ricevetti in regalo per i miei vent'anni.

Why is it ricevetti and not ho ricevuto? I googled, and it's correct (!) but I don't understand how that's conjugated.

Cheers,
Drew
19.2 ricevetti
Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor April 2, 2017, 7:17 pm
Hi Drew,

That's passato remoto, the equivalent of simple past in English.

This tense is really common in books. However, in some areas of Italy, people use passato remoto much more than passato prossimo (ho ricevuto) for talking about past events.

For reference, here's the conjugation of the other pronouns:
Io ricevetti (ricevei)
Tu ricevesti
Egli/ella/lui/lei ricevette (ricevé)
Noi ricevemmo
Voi riceveste
Essi ricevettero (riceverono)

The conjugations in brackets are alternatives, but coming from my experience with books they are less common than the other conjugations.

Hope this helps!

LuciaRead More
Hi Drew,

That's passato remoto, the equivalent of simple past in English.

This tense is really common in books. However, in some areas of Italy, people use passato remoto much more than passato prossimo (ho ricevuto) for talking about past events.

For reference, here's the conjugation of the other pronouns:
Io ricevetti (ricevei)
Tu ricevesti
Egli/ella/lui/lei ricevette (ricevé)
Noi ricevemmo
Voi riceveste
Essi ricevettero (riceverono)

The conjugations in brackets are alternatives, but coming from my experience with books they are less common than the other conjugations.

Hope this helps!

Lucia
19.2 ricevetti
drewster April 2, 2017, 9:11 pm
Grazie Lucia,

Would that be more common in the south than the north? I haven't done any passato remoto. 

Cheers,
Drew
19.2 ricevetti
drewster April 3, 2017, 11:52 am
Lucia,

Also, I'm reading a short story where it uses a lot of accents that appear to be futuro but it is translated in the past, such as:

"Lorenzo fermò la macchina e sì voltò verso il giovane"

Is that another tense with which I'm not familiar?

Cheers,
Drew
19.2 ricevetti
Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor April 3, 2017, 2:49 pm
Hi Drew,

Yes, in the spoken language passato remoto is commonly used in the southern regions!

The sentence you quoted is tricky, because the accent marks may hint at the future tense, yet the ones used here are conjugations of passato remoto. The general rule (there are exceptions!) for the third singular person is: -ERE verbs take -ette, -ARE and -IRE verbs have an accent mark. For example, you'll have...

-ARE:
lei portò una torta (from portare) - she brought a cake
lui la mangiò tutta (from mangiare) - he ate it all
lei si arrabbiò (from arrabbiarsi, reflexive form of arrabbiare) - she got angry

-ERE:
lui dovette scusarsi (from dovere) - he had to apologize
lei ricevette un mazzo di fiori (from ricevere, the verb we've already seen) - she received a bunch of flowers
lui prese le chiavi della macchina (irregular verb, prendere) - he took the car keys

-IRE:
lei dormì un po' sul divano (from dormire) - she slept a bit on the sofa
lui uscì di casa (from uscire) - he went out (the house)
lei disse che voleva andare fuori a cena (irregular verb, dire) - she said she wanted to go out to eat
ma nessuno la sentì (from sentire) - but nobody heard her

Fermare and voltare are regular -ARE verbs, so they will have an accent mark in the third singular person of passato remoto...Read More
Hi Drew,

Yes, in the spoken language passato remoto is commonly used in the southern regions!

The sentence you quoted is tricky, because the accent marks may hint at the future tense, yet the ones used here are conjugations of passato remoto. The general rule (there are exceptions!) for the third singular person is: -ERE verbs take -ette, -ARE and -IRE verbs have an accent mark. For example, you'll have...

-ARE:
lei portò una torta (from portare) - she brought a cake
lui la mangiò tutta (from mangiare) - he ate it all
lei si arrabbiò (from arrabbiarsi, reflexive form of arrabbiare) - she got angry

-ERE:
lui dovette scusarsi (from dovere) - he had to apologize
lei ricevette un mazzo di fiori (from ricevere, the verb we've already seen) - she received a bunch of flowers
lui prese le chiavi della macchina (irregular verb, prendere) - he took the car keys

-IRE:
lei dormì un po' sul divano (from dormire) - she slept a bit on the sofa
lui uscì di casa (from uscire) - he went out (the house)
lei disse che voleva andare fuori a cena (irregular verb, dire) - she said she wanted to go out to eat
ma nessuno la sentì (from sentire) - but nobody heard her

Fermare and voltare are regular -ARE verbs, so they will have an accent mark in the third singular person of passato remoto. The conjugations of futuro semplice still have an accent mark, but the vowel changes and part of the ending remains:

lui fermò la macchina - he stopped the car
lui fermerà la macchina - he will stop the car
lui si voltò - he turned
lui si volterà - he will turn

Verbs in -ERE and -IRE as well have an "a" vowel in the future tense:
lui ricevette, lui riceverà - he received, he will receive
lui dormì, lui dormirà - he slept, he will sleep

The best way to learn how to conjugate verbs in passato remoto is indeed reading, so keep up with the great work!

Lucia

P.S. a quick note about your sentence: be careful not to confuse si with , because the first is a reflexive particle, the latter means yes!
19.2 ricevetti
drewster April 3, 2017, 9:15 pm
Thanks Lucia, that's brilliant information.

Is passato remoto more common in older texts? The story I'm reading is probably 50-60 years old but I so rarely find anything that I can read, so I don't have wide experience.

Drew
19.2 ricevetti
Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor April 4, 2017, 3:41 pm
You're welcome!

Mmh, no, passato remoto nowadays is still very common, just as the simple past tense in English books. In recent years it looks like the present tense has been slowly overcoming the past tense, especially in young-adult novels, but passato remoto is still prevalent in fiction writing.

What story is it? I don't know if I've ever mentioned them here but you could give Grimms' fairy tales a try. They should be easy enough to follow. There's this multilanguage website where you can read them, and even compare the different translations if you want! http://www.grimmstories.com/it/grimm_fiabe/index

Lucia
19.2 ricevetti
drewster April 4, 2017, 9:13 pm
The story I'm reading is in a parallel text. The parallel text is helpful, but it is still way too advanced for me. The story itself is Anguish by Alberto Moravia.

That website looks pretty good ... I'll give it a try. Thanks!!
19.2 ricevetti
Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor April 5, 2017, 4:23 pm
Moravia's writing style would be devilish for a native speaker as well haha! I'm skimming through an extract of one of his books and I can spot a couple of words that are a bit old-fashioned in their spelling, such as tovagliuolo that is written tovagliolo (handkerchief) nowadays, or giuoco that has now become gioco (play). They are quite rare though, and the flow of the sentences is something wonderful, so it's a great resource for learning how the Italian sentences connect to each other.

Qual è il tuo genere preferito? What's your favorite genre? Try to answer in Italian!

Lucia
19.2 ricevetti
drewster April 5, 2017, 9:15 pm
Allora, il mio genere preferito in inglese è le biografie e anche altre "non-fiction". Mi piacerebbe leggere queste in Italiano io mio vocabolario non è ancora grande. Presto, spero!

Il tuo consiglio "Fiabe dei Grimm" era eccellente per me!
19.2 ricevetti
drewster April 5, 2017, 9:30 pm
I film per me sono meglio di libri in Italiano. Ho visto recentemente "Perfetti sconosciuti" e era eccezionale. Non ho capito tanto ma alcune parole e questo è incoraggiante.  
19.2 ricevetti
Lucia - Rocket Languages Tutor April 6, 2017, 6:50 pm
Have you ever heard of Se questo è un uomo (If this is a man)? It's a memoir so not exactly non-fiction, but it was one of my compulsory readings in middle school and a great read. When you mentioned biographies I immediately thought of Wikipedia. That's a treasure island
I'm glad you like the fairy tales website!
I've never watched Perfetti sconosciuti. I just googled that and I see it's a comedy. If you like the Italian humor, you could also try watching Amici miei or the Fantozzi movie series, or Totò. These are all classics! My personal favorite is Il ragazzo di campagna, "The country boy".

Keep up with the great work, I understood you perfectly!

Lucia
19.2 ricevetti
drewster April 6, 2017, 10:35 pm
Non ho sentito Se questo è un uomo ma vedrò se posso lo comprare.

Wikipedia ... un ottima idea ancora! Certamente, il web è meglio che libri per me, solo perché non ho il vocabolario. Ma, io lavoro duramente!

Perfetti Sconosciuti .. vale la pena vederlo. Non ho molto film italiani qui in Australia, al cinema in ogni modo!
19.2 ricevetti

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