Italian adjectives of quality, aggettivi qualificativi. Listen to the podcast and solve the quiz.
Italian adjectives, generally agree in gender and number with the noun they refer to. All Italian nouns have a gender, masculine and feminine, and are singular and plural.
If you have an Italian dictionary on your desk, you will see that aggettivi are generally listed in their singular, masculine declination.
There are three categories of adjeectives: ending in -o, ending in -e and ending in -a.
Italian adjectives decline feminine and plurals as follows:
In a nutshell:
- Italian adjectives ending in -o : -o for the masculine singular (Antonio è bello), -a for feminine singular (Lucia è bella), -i for the masculine plural (Antonio e Claudio sono belli) and -e for the feminine plural (Lucia e Giorgia sono belle)
- Italian adjectives ending in -e : -e singular (Dario è intelligente – Stefania è intelligente) and -i for plural (Dario e Francesco sono intelligenti – Claudia e Marta sono intelligenti). With adjectives ending in -e there is no difference between the masculine and the feminine gender. We understand it looking at the noun itself or the article.
- Italian adjectives ending in -a do not change if singular (Mauro è altruista – Elisa è altruista), but change if plural: -i for the masculine plural (Giulio e Luigi sono ottimisti) and -e for the feminine plural (Michela e Giorgia sono pessimiste). Therefore, there is only one form for the masculine and feminine as singular, two different plurals.
There is also a small number of invariable Italian adjectives. It means they never change . For example the colour rosa (pink): la macchina è rosa, i vestiti sono rosa. Others examples: pari (even), impari (uneven) dispari (odd), blu, lilla (lilac), viola (violet).
There are also some cases where the position of an adjective in a sentence can change the meaning of it.
- If I say: Luigi è un amico vecchio I mean that my friend Luigi is old.
- If I say Luigi è un vecchio amico I mean that Luigi is an old friend of mine.
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