Imperativo e pronomi: Italian imperative and pronouns: QUIZ

We can combine the imperativo with pronouns in a single word. Learn the most common scenarios and solve the quiz at the bottom of this post.

LEVEL: Intermediate.

I recently wrote a post about the Italian imperativo with simple audio examples. I

IMPERATIVOparlarecorrereaprirefinire
tuparlacorriaprifinisci
noiparliamocorriamoapriamofiniamo
voiparlatecorreteapritefinite
tu (negativo)non parlarenon correrenon aprirenon finire

So, the imperativo, or giving orders in Italian, is basically very similar to the presente indicativo, (with the exception of -ARE –> (TU) PARLA instead of (TU) PARLI).

The negative imperativo of NOI & VOI is NON + IMPERATIVO. Non parlate.

The negative imperativo of TU is NON + infinitive= Non parlare, “don’t speak”.

Conjugations with the imperative are quite limited, since we can give orders only to TU, NOI and VOI. We can combine the imperativo with any pronouns – direct object, indirect object, CI & NE – as follows:


  • Prendi il telefono –> PRENDILO
  • Finisci i compiti –> FINISCILI
  • Dai i soldi a Lucia –> DAGLIELI
  • Regala la bicicletta a Dario –> REGALAGLIELA
  • Aiutiamo le tue amiche –> AIUTIAMOLE
  • Dite a Francesca di venire –> DITEGLIELO
  • Compra le sigarette per me –> COMPRAMELE
  • Porta i bambini al cinema –> PORTACELI
  • Assaggia una fetta di torta –> ASSAGGIANE UNA FETTA

In some of the examples above, we can see how direct and indirect pronouns merge together with the imperativo to create a single word . e.g DAGLIELI.

The following verbs can have an irregular imperative with TU.

andaredaredirefarestare
TUvai (va’)dai (da’)di’fai (fa’)sati (sta’)

When combined with some pronouns there’s a duplication of consonants. For example:

  • Vai al mercato –> VACCI
  • Dai a me i soldi –> DAMMI I SOLDI –> DAMMELI
  • Dai a me le chiiavi –> DAMMI LE CHIAVI –>DAMMELE
  • Di’ a noi cosa pensi –> DICCI COSA PENSI –> DICCELO
  • Fai il tuo lavoro –> FALLO
  • Fai a noi un piacere  –> FACCI UN PIACERE –>FACCELO
  • Stai a casa –> STACCI

The negative imperative with TU is NON + INFINITO. The infinito has the same property of the imperativo. It can be combined with pronouns. Alternatively, we can put the pronoun before the verb. For example:

  • Non salutare Luigi –> Non salutarlo = Non lo salutare.
  • Non bere la birra –> Non berla = Non la bere.
  • Non comprare la moto a Davide –> Non comprargliela = Non gliela comprare.
  • Non dare i soldi a loro –> Non darglieli –> Non glieli dare.

LEI & LORO

The imperativo of the formal tu = Lei and Loro is in fact a form of congiuntivo presente. Pronouns do not merge with the verbs.

LEI

  • Vada a casa –> Ci vada.
  • Mi saluti Suo marito  –> Me lo saluti.
  • Prenda il mio ombrello –> Lo prenda.

LORO

  • Vadano a casa –> Ci vadano.
  • Bevano tutti del vino –> Ne bevano tutti.
  • Prendano il treno –> Lo prendano.

Thanks for reading. Please read more in the quiz. Alla prossima!


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Pronomi diretti, Italian direct object pronouns – Audio Examples

Italian direct object pronouns

Learn the Italian direct object pronouns (atoni and tonici), listen to the audio examples.

A direct object (complemento oggetto in Italian) is the target, the object of an action expressed by a verb. It answers the questions: Chi? Che cosa? In other words:

  • Mangio (che cosa?) un gelato.
  • Porto (chi?) mia madre al  cinema.

Gelato and mia madre are the objects of the sentences.

I didn’t use much fantasy for the examples. There are more complex sentences below.

If we know the object linked to a verb, we can avoid repetitions and instead of gelato or mia madre we can use Italian direct object pronouns: pronome diretto, a.k.a. pronome complemento diretto:

  • Lo mangio.
  • La porto al cinema.

I eat it, I take her to the movies. The choice of the right pronoun depends on the gender and number of the noun we need to replace.

Gelato is singular masculine, mia madre is singular feminine. Look at the chart.


Two types of Italian direct object pronouns

(Pronomi Soggetto)Pronomi AtoniPronomi tonici
(io)mime
(tu)tite
(lui / lei)lo / lalui / lei
(Lei – form)LaLei
(noi)cinoi
(voi)vivoi
(loro)li / leloro

Unlike English, we have two sets of direct object pronouns.

Pronomi tonici: when we use a pronome tonico, the focus of the sentence is the pronoun itself. We want the object to be the main element of the sentence. In this case, the pronoun comes after the verb. The pronomi tonici make sentences less fluid and have an “exclusive” function, as we focus only on one element. Moreover, the pronomi tonici are valid for people, not for objects. I could never turn Mangio il gelato into Mangio lui. If I talk about about a person:

  • Porto lei al cinema. 

I take her to the movies, nobody else. The pronomi tonici exclude other possible objects.


Pronomi atoni: the focus of the sentence is not the pronoun. The pronome atono comes before the verb and it’s strictly linked to the action. It is more common than the equivalent pronome tonico in spoken Italian and the sentence is more fluid. I simply take her to the movie, there’s no particular emphasis on the object.

  • La porto al cinema.

Unless you really need to put the object at the center of the sentence, your choice will be  the pronome atono, more common and useful in spoken Italian. Read and listen to the examples.

Pronomi Atoni


  • Guardi spesso la tivĂą? – Sì, la guardo tutti i giorni.
  • Stai cercando un lavoro? – Sì, lo sto cercando.
  • Mi chiami stasera? – No, ti chiamo domani.
  • Ci invitate alla festa? – Sì, vi invitiamo.
  • Hai comprato le fragole?  – No, non le ho comprate.
  • Avete visto i miei figli? – Sì, li abbiamo visti in piazza.

* voice of a student!

Italian direct object pronouns are very important. You will soon learn that they can interact with pronomi atoni indiretti, riflessivi, si impersonale and some verbs (infinito, imperativo, gerundio).

Please solve the quiz below.

If you are already familiar with the pronomi diretti, you can try this more complex quiz.

Alla prossima.


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Vittorio Matteo Corcos – Guardando il mare – 1900 ca

Italian verb piacere and a bunch of pronouns – PODCAST

“Mipiace”iswhatyoucanreadontheItalianfacebook”like”button,butitdoesn’ttranslateintoastraight”Ilikeit”.LearntheItalianverbpiacere andothersimilarverbs.Listentothepodcast.

  Mipiace,isoneofthefirstthingsyoulearninItalian.Andasithappensveryoften,whenyoustarttolearnaforeignlanguage,youjustmemorizesentencesbefore gettingintodetailsandstructures.Nowit’stimetohaveasecondlook.Let’sthinkaboutthissimplesentence:

  • Mipiaceilgelato=(Ilgelatopiaceame)

NativeEnglishspeakerstranslateitinto”Ilikeice-cream”,andthemeaningisjustright.Butifyoureaditcarefully,theItaliansentenceisactually”ice-creamispleasingtome”,whereGelato isinfactthesubject,andnot Mi,whichinsteadisanindirectpronoun.

  • ThestructureinEnglishis”AlikesB”
  • ThestructureinItalianis”ToA,Bispleasing”

…where”toA” isanindirectpronounand”B”istherealsubject. Difficult?No,justdifferent.Let’sfirstdefinealltheItalianindirectpronouns:

  • tome->ame ->MI
  • toyou ->ate ->TI
  • tohim ->alui ->GLI
  • toher ->alei ->LE
  • tous ->anoi ->CI
  • toyou ->avoi ->VI
  • tothem ->aloro ->GLI
InItalian,conjugationschangewiththesubject.ItbecomesmoreclearthatBistherealsubjectwithpluralnouns.SoifIsay”Ilikespaghetti”, piacere changesbecausethesubjectspaghetti(loro-they)isplural:

  • Mipiaccionogli spaghetti=(glispaghettipiaccionoame)

WeusetheItalianverbpiacere verymuchincombinationwithinfinitiveverbs,whenwelikeanaction, exactly as youdoinEnglishwiththegerund.Ifiwanttosay “Ilikeswimming“inItalian…

  • Mipiace nuotare

Swimmingispleasingtome.IfIwanttosaythatswimming”ispleasingtoyou”Igo”tipiacenuotare”,ispleasingtohim”glipiacenuotare”,ispleasingtous,”cipiacenuotare”andsoon.Ifyouthoughtthatthelatterperhapsshouldbe”cipiacciononuotare”or”cipiacciamonuotare”(I’mprettysureyouhaveconsideredthoseoptions…)becausenoi-us isplural,gobacktothebeginningofthispostandreaditagain…

Therearesomeotherimportantverbshavingthesamestructureofpiacere,notably:

interessare (tobeofinterest,tocareof), servire (toneed),sembrare (toseem),succedere (tohappen).Let’sseesomeexamplesandlistentothepodcast:

  • interessare (tobe ofinterest,tocareof)
Miinteressamoltol’arte
I’mveryinterestedinarts Nonmiinteressanoituoiproblemi
I’mnotinterestedinyourtrouble

  • servire (toneed)
Miserveiltuoaiuto
Ineedyourhelp

Perleggere,miservonoimieiocchiali
Ineedmyglassesforreading

  • sembrare (toseem,tolooklike)
Claudiomisembraunpo’distratto
ItseemstomethatClaudioisabitabsent

Ituoicapellimisembranotroppocorti
Youhairlookstooshort

  • succedere (tohappen)
Mi succedespessodiperdereiltreno
Ihappenquiteoftentomissthetrain

Ultimamentetisuccedonounsaccodiguai
You’vebeeninalotoftroublelately

 

Alastnoteimportantnote.IfweusetheverbANDAREinthesamewayweusePIACERE,wecanbuildsimple andhandysentencesforsayingthat”I’minthemoodfor…”Forexample:

 
Mivadiandarealcinema
Mivaunbelgelato
Tivadivenireconme?
Nonmivannoletuebugie

 

Sometimesit’srathercomplicatedtotranslatedaccuratelysentenceswiththeItalianverbpiacere &co.JusttrytousethemdirectlyinItalian,keepinginmindwhatyoureadabove.Thanksforreading.Allaprossima!

Don`t copy text!