Level 3: Avere

A1: Love (3)

A2: Italian Cuisine (3)

B1. Action Words

Dimensions of time

Words

1. I have, I had, I will have, et al.

2. Compound tenses

3. Simple tense sextets

4. Compound tense sextets

5. Summary

B2. Action Words

Volere + potere

C. Words

Question words

Preview of Level 4

D. Rules

Numbers, time

E. Dialogue

In spiaggia

On the beach

Words

F. Results & Preview

 

* * *

For basic notions of the Italian language, continue with the next episode of Giulia, Giacomo and their friends (‘A1: Love’) and Pasta alla Caprese (‘A2: Italian Cuisine’). Then go onto Level 4.

Download the audio files from www.4elisa.com to your mobile devices and listen while reading the text and checking the English translation. Remember, there is no shame in listening to the audio 10, 20 or even 50 times!

For a more thorough knowledge of the Italian language, please continue with section B, ‘Action Words’, section C, ‘Words’, section D, ‘Rules’, etc. In Level 3, you will encounter the most important and most difficult part of this manual: avere, the #1 word of the Italian language. You will observe how action words explode into dozens of pieces and start to understand how to appreciate the puzzle.

These twenty pages are particularly hard. Don’t despair. We don’t expect you to remember every detail of what you see here, but we offer you the privilege of discovering the full potential of one single Italian action word in a single day! It is a rough initiation, but like all initiation rites, you have to do it only once!

As always, make extensive use of the audio files. Listen to them until you hear and distinguish every single word.

 

A1: Love (3)

Giulia meets Sara, one of her best friends. They discuss the breakup with Giacomo.

Sara: Come stai? Ti senti meglio?

S.: How are you? Do you feel better?

Giulia: Si, mi sento molto meglio. Finalmente l’ho lasciato. Ma non dormo bene, non mangio e non riesco a concentrarmi per gli esami. Lo odio!

J.: Yes, I feel much better. I finally left him. But I’m not sleeping well, I’m not eating and I can’t manage to concentrate on the exams. I hate him!

Sara: Pazienza, Giulia, passerà. E soprattutto, non devi sentirti in colpa. È lui che ha sbagliato.

S.: Patience, Julia, that will stop (soon). And above all, you should not feel guilty. It’s he who was wrong.

Giulia: Certo, ma sei sicura che quella storia con Valeria va avanti da settimane?

J.: Yes, but are you sure that that relationship with Valeria has been going on for weeks?

Sara: Così mi hanno detto. E li ho visti anche mentre uscivano dal corso di farmacologia dieci minuti prima della fine…

S.: That’s what I was told. And I saw them also coming out of pharmacology class ten minutes before the end…

Giulia: Uffa, mi sento come in un frullatore. Ho la testa nel pallone.

J.: Ugh, I feel like I’m in a blender. Completely confused.

Sara: Non pensare più a lui. Chi non ti ama non ti merita. Sei così carina. Troverai presto un altro compagno…

S.: Don’t think of him anymore. He who doesn’t love you, doesn’t deserve you. You’re so pretty. You’ll find another boyfriend quickly…

Words

{AUDIO}

come stai?

how are you?

sentirsi

to feel

meglio

better

molto

much; very

finalmente

finally, in the end

dormire

to sleep

bene

well

mangiare

to eat

riuscire

to manage; to succeed

concentrarsi

to concentrate

l’esame (m.)

exam

odiare

to hate

la pazienza

patience

passare

to pass; to stop

soprattutto

above all

non devi

you must not

sentirsi in colpa

to feel guilty

è lui che

it’s him who

sbagliare

to be wrong, mistaken

certo

certainly

essere sicuro

to be sure

andare avanti

to continue

da settimane

for weeks

così

so

mi hanno detto

they told me

li ho visti

I saw them

mentre

while

uscire

to go/come out

il corso

class

farmacologia

pharmacology

dieci

10

il minuto

minute

come

like; how

il frullatore

blender

il pallone

ball

la testa

head

avere la testa nel pallone

to be confused

non pensare più

don’t think anymore

chi

who

amare

to love

meritare

to deserve

carino/-a

pretty

trovare

to find

presto

soon, quickly

altro/-a

other

il compagno

boyfriend

 

A2: Italian Cuisine (3)

Pasta alla Caprese is another classics. Be careful to choose tasty ingredients, in particular tomatoes, basil and olive oil.

Per 4 persone: 400 g di pasta corta (farfalle, fusilli, mezze penne ecc.). Condimento: 4 pomodori, 200 g di mozzarella, 15 piccole foglie di basilico, 100 ml di olio d’oliva, sale, un pizzico di origano (opzionale).

For 4 people: 400 g short pasta (farfalle, fusilli, mezze penne, etc.). Dressing: 4 tomatoes, 200 g of mozzarella, 15 small basil leaves, 100 ml of olive oil, salt, a pinch of oregano (optional).

Tagliare a dadini (1-2 cm) i pomodori e la mozzarella e metterli in un recipiente alto. Aggiungere olio, sale, basilico tagliato a mano (e eventualmente l’origano).

Dice (1-2 cm) tomatoes and mozzarella and place them in a tall container. Add oil, salt, basil torn by hand (and the oregano as you wish).

Cuocere la pasta (vedi Level 1). Una volta scolata, metterla immediatamente nel recipiente del condimento e mescolare energicamente con due cucchiai di legno.

Cook pasta (see Level 1). Once drained, put it immediately into the bowl of the sauce and stir vigorously with two wooden spoons.

Variazioni dello chef: aggiungere 200 g di tonno bollito e schiacciato con la forchetta e 3 cucchiai di pesto alla genovese.

Chef’s variations: add 200 g of tuna boiled and crushed with a fork and 3 tablespoons of pesto.

 

Words

{AUDIO}

il pomodoro

tomato

la mozzarella

mozzarella

piccolo/-a

small

la foglia

leave

il basilico

basil

il sale

salt

un pizzico di

a pinch of

l’origano

oregano

tagliare

to cut

tagliare a dadini

to dice

il recipiente

container

alto/-a

tall, high

possibilmente

possibly

tagliato a mano

torn by hand

eventualmente

optionally

una volta

once

mescolare

to stir

energicamente

vigorously

il tonno

tuna

schiacciare

to crush

la forchetta

fork

il pesto alla genovese

pesto sauce

 

 

 

 

 

B1. Action Words

{AUDIO}

Infinito

avere

Participio passato

avuto

Gerundio presente

avendo

Imperativo

abbi | abbia | abbiamo | abbiate | abbiano

 

Presente

Imperfetto

io

ho

avevo

tu

hai

avevi

lui/lei

ha

aveva

noi

abbiamo

avevamo

voi

avete

avevate

loro

hanno

avevano

 

Futuro semplice

Condizionale pres.

Passato remoto

io

avrò

avrei

ebbi

tu

avrai

avresti

avesti

lui/lei

avrà

avrebbe

ebbe

noi

avremo

avremmo

avemmo

voi

avrete

avreste

aveste

loro

avranno

avrebbero

ebbero

 

Congiuntivo
presente

Congiuntivo
imperfetto

che io

abbia

avessi

che tu

abbia

avessi

che lui/lei

abbia

avesse

che noi

abbiamo

avessimo

che voi

abbiate

aveste

che loro

abbiano

avessero

 

In the coming levels, you will see many of these colourful tables. The ‘standard mode’ of action words is the so-called indicativo which expresses facts of life that really happened, are happening right now or will be happening in the future; as the indicativo is the default mode, we don’t specify it and say simply presente and imperfetto. The indicativo is also called mood. Other moods are 1) the condizionale (conditional), 2) the congiuntivo (subjunctive), and 3) the imperativo (imperative). In addition, there are also three indefinite moods which do not indicate the person: infinito (infinitive), participio (participle) and gerundio (gerund). Does that sound confusing? If it does, forget it if you like! Just remember that there is a congiuntivo which Italians use to express doubts, thoughts, wishes, beliefs, and worries. The congiuntivo will later cause you a bit of a headache; we might have something to alleviate your pain.

 

Of the 42 words presented in the table above, 24 of them we first saw in Level 1:

Presente

ho-hai-ha | abbiamo-avete-hanno

I, you have, he or she has | we, you, they have

Imperfetto

avevo-avevi-aveva | avevamo-avevateavevano

I, you, he or she had | we, you, they had

I, you, he or she used to have | we, you, they used to have

Futuro

avrò-avrai-avrà | avremo-avrete-avranno

I, you, he or she will have | we, you, they will have

Condizionale presente

avrei-avresti-avrebbe | avremmo-avreste-avrebbero

I, you, he or she would have | we, you, they would have

Dimensions of time

Before continuing our exploration of avere, let’s briefly return to the dimensions of time. Remember Level 0: When talking about your life, you frequently use the present, the past and the future: I have (presente), I had (imperfetto), I will have (futuro).

Less frequently, you will also say I had had (trapassato prossimo past perfect) to express something that happened before ‘I had’; or I will have had (futuro anteriore future perfect) to talk about something that will happen before an even more distant future.

Please note that 1) I had has two equivalents in Italian, the passato prossimo (‘ho fatto’) and the imperfetto (‘avevo’); 2) passato remoto simple past is another (yes, a third!) way to say I had; and, finally, 3) trapassato remoto preterite perfect is another way to say I had had. That gives you 8 tenses (new tenses shown in blue):

Figure03_01

However, life isn’t carved in stone, but variable and subject to conditions – for example, when you say I would have (condizionale presente present conditional) or I would have had (condizionale passato past conditional). Now you have 10 tenses (new tenses again shown in blue):

Figure02_02

Finally, Italian has a particular way to express emotion, doubt, personal feelings, suggestions, etc. As Italians love to be precise, they add another four so-called conjunctive tenses to fully express themselves. That puts the tense count at a staggering 14 (new tenses shown in blue). Yes, Italian – like French, Spanish and Portuguese – is capable of exploding a simple I have to a total of 14 different flavours!

Figure02_03

Fortunately, 7 of the 14 time tenses are so-called ‘compound tenses’ which recycle words you already know; however, you’ll still need to memorize the remaining 7 “six-packs” = 42 words. If you memorize them now the benefits will be doubled: first, you’ll fully master avere, the most important Italian word; second, the 42-word knowledge of avere will help you manage all other Italian action words. Mastering Level 3 is like climbing Mount Everest – after Level 3 everything else will feel like a gentle Italian downhill passeggiata slope.

Level 3, section B, is divided into 4 parts:

1. Part 1 presents just 7 words – the first person singular (I have, I had, I will have, etc.) of the 7 simple tenses.

2. The easy Part 2 combines these 7 words with the past participles loved, hoped, studied, knew, believed, understood and slept, to build the 7 compound tenses.

3. Part 3 presents complete sextets of the 7 simple tenses.

4. The easy Part 4 concludes with the sextets of the 7 compound tenses.

Examples from everyday life will show you how to use the words. Listen to the audio tracks until you know the sentences by heart.

Words

The examples shown below use the following words presented in Level 2. Please take a second quick look.

poco

little

poco da fare

little to do

Natale

Christmas

sicuramente

certainly

nuovo

new

molto

much

un’idea

an idea

può darsi

maybe

per lei

for her

brutto

ugly; bad

avere un brutto carattere

to be bad-tempered

amare

to love

sperare

to hope

studiare

to study

sapere

to know

credere

to believe

capire

to understand

dormire

to sleep

piccolo

small

una macchina

a car

un ragazzo

a boy, young man

simpatico

nice, pleasant

una ragazza

a girl, young woman

giovane

young

grande

big

una casa

a house

un lavoro

a job

prestigioso

prestigious

ancora

still

i nonni

grandparents

una borsa di studio

a scholarship

un mestiere

a profession

immenso

huge

un successo

a success

un figlio

a son

una figlia

a daughter

solo

only

una vacanza

a vacation

breve

short

il capo

a boss

interessante

interesting

un successone

a huge success

un problema

a problem

meglio

better

proprio

here: really, exactly

una sfiga (colloquial)

bad luck

le palle (vulgar)

balls

 

 

1. I have, I had, I will have, et al.

Let’s start with your own person, the first person singular.

1.1 Presente

Presente

(io)

ho

I

have

Present

 

1.2 Imperfetto

Imperfetto

(io)

avevo

I
I

had
used to have

Imperfect

 

The difference between avevo I had, I used to have and ho avuto I (have) had is a fundamental one:

avevo (imperfetto) expresses habits, states of mind, environmental descriptions and how people and the world were in the past;

ho avuto (passato prossimo) refers to an action which has been completed in the past.

Think of a theater. While avevo may describe the various elements of a theater stage set, ho avuto would describe a sudden action occuring on the stage. If you are French, Spanish or Portuguese, the difference between avevo and ho avuto is immediately clear to you (French: j’avais vs. j’ai eu; Spanish: yo tenia vs. tuve; Portuguese: eu tinha vs. tive); if not, you’ll need time to understand and digest it. We’ll talk about it in further detail in Level 8.

Avevo un gatto e due cani.

I had a cat and two dogs.

Avevo sempre sete.

I was always thirsty.

 

1.3 Futuro

Futuro semplice

(io)

avrò

I

will have

Future

 

Avrò poco da fare.

I will have little to do.

A Natale, avrò sicuramente un nuovo tablet.

At Christmas, I’ll certainly get a new tablet.

 

1.4 Condizionale Presente

Condizionale presente

(io)

avrei

I

would have

Present conditional

 

Avrei molto da dire.

I would have much to say.

Avrei un’idea…

I would have (I have) an idea…

 

1.5 Congiuntivo presente

Back to the present. When expressing emotion, doubt, personal feelings, suggestions, etc., the Italian language uses the subjunctive tense. As you will see, the congiuntivo presente usually translates into the present tense (I have) and the congiuntivo imperfetto into the imperfect tense (I had).

The present subjunctive congiuntivo presente:

Congiuntivo presente

che io

abbia

that I

have

Present
subjunctive

 

Here are some expressions that command the use of the congiuntivo. You will find more about the fascinating congiuntivo in Level 9.

Ho l’impressione che…

I have the impression that…

Avrei preferito che…

I would have preferred that…

Speravo che…

I hoped that…

Non sapevo che…

I didn’t know that…

Mi dispiace che…

I am sorry that…

È importante | necessario | incredibile | possibile | impossibile | naturale | probabile | difficile che…

It is important | necessary | incredible | possible | impossible | natural | probable | difficult that…

Può darsi che…

Maybe…

 

Può darsi che io abbia tempo per lei.

Maybe I have time for her.

Può darsi che io abbia un brutto carattere.

Maybe I have a bad temper.

1.6 Congiuntivo imperfetto

And this is the congiuntivo imperfetto imperfect subjunctive:

Congiuntivo imperfetto

che io

avessi

that I

had

Imperfect
subjunctive

 

Può darsi che io non avessi tempo per lei.

Maybe I didn’t have time for her.

Può darsi che io avessi un brutto carattere.

Maybe I had a bad temper.

 

1.7 Passato remoto

Finally, to express a remote past, Italian uses the passato remoto simple past. In most parts of Italy it isn’t used in colloquial language and you’ll find it mostly in prose.

Passato remoto

(io)

ebbi

I

had

Simple past

 

Ebbi molto tempo.

I had much time.

 

1.8 Summary

1

Presente

(io)

ho

I

have

Present

2

Imperfetto

(io)

avevo

I

had, used to have

Imperfect

3

Futuro semplice

(io)

avrò

I

will have

Future

4

Condizionale presente

(io)

avrei

I

would have

Present conditional

5

Congiuntivo presente

che io

abbia

that I

have

Present
subjunctive

6

Congiuntivo imperfetto

cho io

avessi

that I

had

Imperfect
subjunctive

7

Passato remoto

(io)

ebbi

I

had

Simple past

 

2. Compound tenses

Now comes the easy second part: take the elements shown above (ho | avevo | avrò | avrei | abbia | avessi | ebbi) and combine them with a past participle to form the so-called compound tenses. Remember: action words of the first group end in –are and form the past participle with –ato; those of the second group end in
ere and form the past participle with –uto; and those of the third group end in –ire and form the past participle with –ito.

Infinitive

Past participle

1

amare

to love

amato

loved

sperare

to hope

sperato

hoped

studiare

to study

studiato

studied

2

sapere

to know

saputo

knew

credere

to believe

creduto

believed

3

capire

to understand

capito

understood

dormire

to sleep

dormito

slept

 

By combining ho | avevo | avrò | avrei | abbia | avessi | ebbi with amato, sperato, studiato, saputo, creduto, capito and dormito, you’ll have access, within seconds, to

· the perfect, passato prossimo

· the past perfect, trapassato prossimo

· the future perfect, futuro anteriore

· the past conditional, condizionale passato

· the past subjunctive, congiuntivo passato

· the past perfect subjunctive, congiuntivo trapassato

· and the preterite perfect, trapassato remoto

Frightening names for even more frightening tenses? Yes indeed! 7 frightening names as easy to learn as the names of 7 prehistoric birds.

1

Passato prossimo

(io)

ho amato

I

loved

Perfect

2

Trapassato prossimo

(io)

avevo sperato

I

had hoped

Past perfect

3

Futuro anteriore

(io)

avrò studiato

I

will have studied

Future perfect

4

Condizionale passato

(io)

avrei saputo

I

would have known

Past conditional

5

Congiuntivo passato

che io

abbia creduto

that I

believed

Past
subjunctive

6

Congiuntivo trapassato

che io

avessi capito

that I

had understood

Past perfect subjunctive

7

Trapassato remoto

(io)

ebbi dormito

I

had slept

Preterite perfect

 

3. Simple tense sextets

Now expand ho | avevo | avrò | avrei | abbia | avessi | ebbi to ‘action word sextets’.

1. Presente

(io)

ho

I

have

(tu)

hai

you

have

(lui/lei)

ha

he/she

has

(noi)

abbiamo

we

have

(voi)

avete

you

have

(loro)

hanno

they

have

 

2. Imperfetto

The imperfetto endings for avere are
evo, -evi, -eva | -evamo, -evate, –evano.

(io)

avevo

I

had

(tu)

avevi

you

had

(lui/lei)

aveva

he/she

had

(noi)

avevamo

we

had

(voi)

avevate

you

had

(loro)

avevano

they

had

 

Just imagine a few things you or your friends had in the past:

Avevo una piccola macchina.

I had a small car.

Avevi un ragazzo simpatico.

You had a nice boyfriend.

Aveva una ragazza giovane.

He/She had a young girlfriend.

Avevamo una grande casa.

We had a big house.

Avevate un lavoro prestigioso.

You had a prestigious job.

Avevano ancora i nonni.

They had still their grandparents.

 

You will later see that the imperfetto endings are very similar for all action words. For avere which is a Group 2 word and ends in –ere the endings are -evo, -evi, -eva | -evamo, -evate, –evano. Here are the endings for Group 1 and Group 3 action words:

Group 1, -are: –avo, –avi, –ava | –avamo, –avate, –avano

Group 2, -ere: –evo, –evi, –eva | –evamo, –evate, –evano

Group 3, -ire: –ivo, –ivi, –iva | –ivamo, -ivate, –ivano

 

3. Futuro

Good news again! The endings of the futuro are regular for all action words: -ò, -ai, -à | -emo, -ete, -anno. All you need to know is the future stem for where to attach the endings. For avere, the future stem is irregular: avr-.

(io)

avrò

I will

have

(tu)

avrai

you will

have

(lui/lei)

avrà

he will
/she will

have

(noi)

avremo

we will

have

(voi)

avrete

you will

have

(loro)

avranno

they will

have

Imagine a few things you or your friends will have in the future.

Avrò una borsa di studio.

I’ll have a scholarship.

Avrai un mestiere interessante.

You’ll have an interesting profession.

Avrà un immenso successo.

He/She’ll have a huge success.

Avremo un figlio e una figlia.

We’ll have a son and a daughter.

Avrete solo una vacanza breve.

You’ll have only a short vacation.

Avranno un nuovo capo.

They’ll have a new boss.

 

4. Condizionale presente

Whenever the future is uncertain, we use the condizionale. The endings of the condizionale, too, are the same for all action words: -ei, -esti, -ebbe | -emmo, -este, –ebbero. Again, attach them to the future stem avr-.

(io)

avrei

I would

have

(tu)

avresti

you would

have

(lui/lei)

avrebbe

he would /she would

have

(noi)

avremmo

we would

have

(voi)

avreste

you would

have

(loro)

avrebbero

they would

have

 

If this or that happened, then…’
avrei una borsa di studio. I’d have a scholarship.
avresti un mestiere interessante. you’d have an interesting job.
avrebbe un immenso successo. he/she’d have a huge hit.
avremmo un figlio e una figlia. we’d have a son and a daughter.
avreste solo una vacanza breve. you’d have only a short vacation.
avrebbero un nuovo capo. they’d have a new boss.

 

5. Congiuntivo presente

When expressing emotion, doubt, personal feelings, suggestions, uncertainty and possibility (see Details in Level 9), we have to use the Italian congiuntivo. The present subjunctive can be translated in English either by the present or the future tense.

che io

abbia

that I

have

che tu

abbia

that you

have

che lui/lei

abbia

that he/she

has

che (noi)

abbiamo

we

have

che (voi)

abbiate

you

have

che (loro)

abbiano

they

have

 

As you see, abbia is the same for the three singular forms. As a consequence, you need to specify who is the subject of the sentence: io, tu or lui/lei:

Può darsi… / Spero…

It’s possible… / I hope

che io abbia tempo. that I’ll have time.
che tu abbia un successone. … that you’ll have a huge hit.
che lui/lei abbia un problema. that he/she’ll have a problem.
che abbiamo meglio da fare. that we have something better to do.
che abbiate proprio una grande sfiga. that you’ll have really a great misfortune.
che abbiano le palle per farlo. that they’ll have the balls to do it.

6. Congiuntivo imperfetto

The imperfect subjunctive is usually translated by the imperfect tense.

che io

avessi

that I

had

che tu

avessi

that you

had

che (lui/lei)

avesse

that he/she

had

che (noi)

avessimo

that we

had

che (voi)

aveste

that you

had

che (loro)

avessero

that they

had

 

As avessi is the same for the two first singular forms, you will specify who is the subject of the sentence, io or tu:

Era improbabile…

It was improbable…

che io avessi tempo. that I had time.
che tu avessi un successone. that you had a huge success.
che avesse un problema maggiore. that he/she had a major problem.
che avessimo meglio da fare. that we had something better to do.
che aveste proprio una grande sfiga. that you had really a great misfortune.
che avessero le palle per farlo. that they had the balls to do it.

7. Passato remoto

The passato remoto simple past is used to recount historical events or actions in the distant past. In conversational Italian, it is not used in Northern and Central Italy.

(io)

ebbi

I

had

(tu)

avesti

you

had

(lui/lei)

ebbe

he/she

had

(noi)

avemmo

we

had

(voi)

aveste

you

had

(loro)

ebbero

they

had

4. Compound tense sextets

We come to the final part of our action verb odyssey, the compound tenses. Please make sure and become comfortable with the following three today:

Passato prossimo (I, you he/she, etc. loved):
ho amato – hai amato – ha amato |
abbiamo amato – avete amato – hanno amato

Trapassato prossimo (I, you he/she, etc. had hoped):
av
evo sperato – avevi sperato – aveva sperato |
av
evamo sperato – avevate sperato – avevano sperato

Condizionale passato (I, you, he/she, etc. would have known):
avr
ei saputo – avresti saputo – avrebbe saputo |
avr
emmo saputo – avreste saputo – avrebbero saputo

 

We present the 7 compound tenses with the action words

amare/amato to love/loved

sperare/sperato to hope/hoped

studiare/studiato to study/studied

sapere/saputo to know/known

credere/creduto to believe/believed

capire/capito to understand/understood

dormire/dormito to sleep/slept

 

1. Passato prossimo

(io)

ho amato

I

loved

(tu)

hai amato

you

loved

(lui/lei)

ha amato

he/she

loved

(noi)

abbiamo amato

we

loved

(voi)

avete amato

you

loved

(loro)

hanno amato

they

loved

 

2. Trapassato prossimo

(io)

avevo sperato

I

had hoped

(tu)

avevi sperato

you

had hoped

(lui/lei)

aveva sperato

he/she

had hoped

(noi)

avevamo sperato

we

had hoped

(voi)

avevate sperato

you

had hoped

(loro)

avevano sperato

they

had hoped

 

3. Futuro anteriore

(io)

avrò studiato

I will

have studied

(tu)

avrai studiato

you will

have studied

(lui/lei)

avrà studiato

he/she will

have studied

(noi)

avremo studiato

we will

have studied

(voi)

avrete studiato

you will

have studied

(loro)

avranno studiato

they will

have studied

 

4. Condizionale passato

(io)

avrei saputo

I would

have known

(tu)

avresti saputo

you would

have known

(lui/lei)

avrebbe saputo

he/she would

have known

(noi)

avremmo saputo

we would

have known

(voi)

avreste saputo

you would

have known

(loro)

avrebbero saputo

they would

have known

 

5. Congiuntivo passato

che io

abbia creduto

that I

believed

che tu

abbia creduto

that you

believed

che lui/lei

abbia creduto

that he/she

believed

che (noi)

abbiamo creduto

that we

believed

che (voi)

abbiate creduto

that you

believed

che (loro)

abbiano creduto

that they

believed

 

6. Congiuntivo trapassato

che io

avessi capito

that I

had understood

che tu

avessi capito

that you

had understood

che (lui/lei)

avesse capito

that he/she

had understood

che (noi)

avessimo capito

that we

had understood

che (voi)

aveste capito

that you

had understood

che (loro)

avessero capito

that they

had understood

 

7. Trapassato remoto

(io)

ebbi dormito

I

had slept

(tu)

avesti dormito

you

had slept

(lui/lei)

ebbe dormito

he/she

had slept

(noi)

avemmo dormito

we

had slept

(voi)

aveste dormito

you

had slept

(loro)

ebbero dormito

they

had slept

 

5. Summary

You have climbed the Italian Mount Everest! Congratulations! Only later will you fully appreciate what you have accomplished today: conquering the fundamentals of one Italian action word. This was the hard core of Italian grammar – in comparison, every other aspect of grammar will appear clean and transparent.

In a few moments, Elisa will take you to the beach but before that see how volere and potere work, check a few question words and take a quick glance at important words you’ll discover in Level 4.

B2. Action Words

Volere + potere

{AUDIO} Today’s irregular action words are volere to want and potere to be able to, can.

volere to want
I want, etc.
potere to be able to, can
I can/am able to, etc.

io

voglio

posso

I

tu

vuoi

puoi

you

lui/lei

vuole

può

he/she

noi

vogliamo

possiamo

we

voi

volete

potete

you

loro

vogliono

possono

they

 

C. Words

Question words

chi?

who?

cosa?

what?

dove?

where?

da dove?

from where?

perché?

why?

come?

how?

quando?

when?

Examples

Chi sei?

Who are you?

Cosa vuoi?

What do you want?

Dove siete andati?

Where did you go?

Da dove venite?

Where are you coming from?

Perché mi hai baciato?

Why did you kiss me?

Come hai fatto questo?

How did you do that?

Quando ci vediamo?

When will we see each other (again)?

 

Preview of Level 4

{AUDIO} In Level 4, you will find the following words. Please take a first peek at them.

contento/-a

glad

stare con

to stay with

curioso/-a

curious

conoscere

to know

dispiaciuto/-a

disappointed

andare in vacanza

to go on vacation

pensare

to think

sposare

to marry

dolce

sweet

terribilmente

terribly

la squadra

team

eccellente

excellent

l’aiuto

help

fantastico

fantastic

bambino

baby boy

bambina

baby girl

mio

my

tuo

your

suo

his/her

questo

this

quello

that

andare

to go

il medico

the doctor

la mattina

the morning

prima

before

il professore

professor

l’esame (m.)

exam

male

badly, wrongly

l’anno

year

la laurea

graduation

fuori

outside

andare fuori di testa

to lose one’s mind

direttamente

directly

il cinema

cinema

tornare

to go/come back

a mezzogiorno

at noon

la casa

house

tornare a casa

to come back home

arrivare

to arrive

festeggiare

to celebrate

il matrimonio

wedding

tornare in tempo

to come back in time

partire

to leave

subito

right away

qualcuno

someone

firmare

to sign

il contratto

contract

immaginare

to imagine

supporre

to suppose

può darsi che

it’s possible that

ingenuo/-a

naïve

in anticipo

in advance

strano/-a

weird

offensivo/-a

offensive, insulting

tutti i giorni

every day

la relazione

relationship

dovere

must, to have to

la persona adatta

the right person

premiare

to honour

sapere

to know

D. Rules

Numbers, time

Now count until 12 and indicate the hour.

Che ore sono?

What time is it?

uno, una

1

È l’una.

due

2

It is one o’clock

tre

3

quattro

4

Sono le due.

cinque

5

It is two o’clock

sei

6

sette

7

Sono le tre e mezza.

otto

8

It is half past three.

nove

9

dieci

10

Sono le cinque meno un quarto.

undici

11

It is a quarter to five (five minus a quarter).

dodici

12

 

How would you say, It’s four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten o’clock? Right: Sono le quattro, le cinque, le sei, le sette, le otto, le nove, le dieci. Excellent!

And how would you say at two, at three, at four, at five o’clock? Just combine the magic word alle and a number: alle due, alle tre, alle quattro, alle cinque. No need to add o’clock. Magnifico!

E. Dialogue

In spiaggia

On the beach

Andiamo al mare domani? Shall we go to the beach tomorrow?
Si, però non rimaniamo in città. Andiamo a Chia, l’acqua è più pulita e la spiaggia è meno affollata. Yes, but let’s not stay in town. Let’s go to Chia, the water is cleaner and the beach is less crowded.
Allora facciamo un picnic? So shall we have a picnic?
Certamente! Però questa volta ci organizzeremo meglio. Ti ricordi la settimana scorsa? Abbiamo dimenticato la metà delle cose, pure la crema solare. Of course! But this time we will organise ourselves better. Do you remember last week? We forgot half the things, even the sunscreen!
E siamo tornati rossi come gamberi. Mai più! Andare al mare senza crema solare è un suicidio. Questa volta metteremo la crema anche prima della partenza. Ci vogliono almeno 20 minuti prima che agisca. And we got back home red as shrimps. Never again! Going to the beach without sunscreen is suicide. This time we’ll also put the sunscreen on before leaving. It takes at least 20 minutes before acting.
Dai, facciamo una lista: ombrellone, sdraie, asciugamani… Come on, make a list: parasol, beach chairs, towels…
E soprattutto pinne e maschera! Il mare a Chia è pieno di pesciolini. And above all, fins and mask! The sea at Chia is full of fish.
Per il picnic propongo panini con pomodoro, insalata e maionese. Se passiamo al supermercato prima di arrivare in spiaggia, prenderemo anche qualche fetta di prosciutto e un pezzo di formaggio. For the picnic, I suggest sandwiches with tomatoes, lettuce and mayonnaise. If we go to the supermarket before the beach, we can also pick up a few slices of ham and a piece of cheese.
E tanta acqua! Sarà una giornata calda. And lots of water! It’ll be a hot day.

[Gli amici arrivano in spiaggia.]

[The friends arrive at the beach.]

Guarda che splendore, sembrano i Caraibi! Che bei colori, ragazzi! Look, what a beauty, it seems like the Caribbean! What beautiful colours, guys!
Siamo stati fortunati. È una giornata eccezionale. We have been lucky. It’s an exceptional day.
Mettiamo l’ombrellone davanti all’isolotto. Per favore, metti subito le borse con il cibo all’ombra. Let’s put the parasol in front of the island. Please put the bags with the food in the shade right away.
Che piacere! L’acqua è caldissima! Via, tutti in acqua! Ci tuffiamo! Ci facciamo gli schizzi! Facciamo le capriole in acqua! Chi arriva prima all’isolotto, vince. What a pleasure! The water is very hot! Let’s go, everyone in! Let’s dive! Let’s make splashes! Let’s do flips in the water! Whoever reaches the island first wins.

 

Words

{AUDIO}

la spiaggia

beach

in spiaggia

at the beach

andiamo

we go; let’s go

il mare

sea

domani

tomorrow

si

yes

però

but

rimaniamo

we stay; let’s stay

la città

city, town

non rimaniamo in città

let’s not stay in the city

Chia

beach in South Sardinia

l’acqua

water

pulito/-a

clean

più pulito/-a

cleaner

affollato/-a

crowded

meno affollato,
-a

less crowded

allora

in that case; then

facciamo

we do/make; let’s do/make

il picnic

picnic

certamente

certainly

questa volta

this time

organizzare

to organise, arrange

ci organizzeremo

we’ll organise ourselves

meglio

better

ricordarsi

to remember

ti ricordi?

do you remember?

la settimana

week

scorso/-a

past, last

dimenticare

to forget

la metà

half

la cosa

thing

la metà delle cose

half of the things (we needed)

pure

also; even

la crema solare

sunscreen

tornare

to return, go back (home)

rosso/-a

red

come

like; how?

mai più!

never again!

senza

without

il suicidio

suicide

questa volta

this time

mettere

to put (on), place, lay

anche

also, too

prima

before

prima della partenza

before departure

ci vogliono

it takes

almeno

at least

il minuto

minute

prima

before

agire

to act, have an effect

prima che agisca

before it has an effect

dai!

come on!

la lista

list

l’ombrellone (m.)

parasol

la sdraia

beach chair

l’asciugamano

towel

e

and

soprattutto

above all

la pinna

flipper

la maschera

mask

il mare

sea

a

at

pieno/-a di

full of

il pesce

fish

il pesciolino

small fish

per

for

proporre

to propose, suggest

propongo

I propose

il panino

sandwich

con

with

il pomodoro

tomato

l’insalata

salad

la maionese

mayonnaise

se

if

passare

to pass; to go

il supermercato

supermarket

prima di arrivare

before arriving

prenderemo

we’ll take, pick up

qualche

a few

la fetta

slice

il prosciutto

ham

un pezzo di

a piece of

il formaggio

cheese

tanto/-a

here: a lot of

sarà

it will be

la giornata

day

caldo/-a

hot

l’amico, pl: gli amici

friend

arrivare

to arrive

guarda!

look!

lo splendore

beauty, brightness

che splendore!

what a beauty!

sembrare

to seem, look like

I Caraibi

the Caribbean

bello/-a

beautiful

il colore

colour

che bei colori!

what beautiful colours

ragazzi!

guys!

siamo stati

we have been, we were

fortunato/-a

lucky, fortunate

è

he/she/it is

eccezionale

exceptional, outstanding

mettiamo

we put; let’s put

davanti a

in front of

l’isolotto

small island

per favore

please

metti!

put!

subito

immediately, right away

la borsa

bag

il cibo

food

l’ombra

shadow

mettere all’ombra

to put in the shade

che piacere!

what a pleasure!

caldissimo/-a

very hot

via!

go! come on!

tutti

everyone

tuffarsi

to dive

ci tuffiamo

we dive; let’s dive

lo schizzo

splash of water; sketch

la capriola

flip

chi arriva prima

whoever reaches first

vince

he/she wins

F. Results & Preview

You have done it! Can you say

ho-hai-ha | abbiamo-avete-hanno

avevo-avevi-aveva | avevamo-avevate-avevano

avrò-avrai-avrà | avremo-avrete-avranno

avrei-avresti-avrebbe | avremmo-avreste-avrebbero

che io abbia-tu abbia-lui/lei abbia | che abbiamo-abbiate-abbiano

che io avessi-tu avessi-avesse | che avessimo-aveste-avessero

ebbi-avesti-ebbe | avemmo-aveste-ebbero

and combine these words with any of the past participles

amato loved

sperato hoped

studiato studied

saputo known

creduto believed

capito understood

dormito slept

 

{AUDIO}

Infinito

avere

Participio passato

avuto

Gerundio presente

avendo

Imperativo

abbi | abbia | abbiamo | abbiate | abbiano

 

Presente

Passato prossimo

Imperfetto

io

ho

ho avuto

avevo

tu

hai

hai avuto

avevi

lui/lei

ha

ha avuto

aveva

noi

abbiamo

abbiamo avuto

avevamo

voi

avete

avete avuto

avevate

loro

hanno

hanno avuto

avevano

 

Futuro semplice

Condizionale pres.

Passato remoto

io

avrò

avrei

ebbi

tu

avrai

avresti

avesti

lui/lei

avrà

avrebbe

ebbe

noi

avremo

avremmo

avemmo

voi

avrete

avreste

aveste

loro

avranno

avrebbero

ebbero

 

Congiuntivo
presente

Congiuntivo
imperfetto

che io

abbia

avessi

che tu

abbia

avessi

che lui/lei

abbia

avesse

che noi

abbiamo

avessimo

che voi

abbiate

aveste

che loro

abbiano

avessero

 

And did you enjoy going to the beach with Elisa? And are you becoming familiar with the table above that 1) summarizes the 7 simple tenses and 2) includes the passato prossimo as an example for the 7 compound tenses?

Well, then you have been promoted to Level 4!

* * *

In Level 4, you will explore and expand the #2 Italian word, essere. The procedure is pretty much the same as in Level 3, so there will be no surprises. However, in one aspect, essere is different from avere: it wants to know if you are a girl or a boy.