Auxiliary verbs (essere, avere) in Italian
Italian language uses mainly to auxiliary verbs, namely essere (to be) and avere (to have).
- 1.Function of essere and avere
- 2.How to choose the correct auxiliary verb
- 2.1.Usage of avere
- 2.1.1.List of verbs with avere as auxiliary
- 2.2.Usage of essere
- 2.2.1.List of verbs with essere as auxiliary
- 2.3.Verbs with both essere and avere
- 2.3.1.List of some verbs with both avere and essere as auxiliary verbs
Function of essere and avere
The auxiliary verbs are characterized by two main aspects:
- they have their own meaning: essere expresses the state of being and the existence of someone or of something; avere expresses possession;
- they are used to form the compound tenses of the verbs.
|Verbs||Proper meaning||Auxiliary value|
|Essere||Io sono suo figlio. (I am her son)||Loro sono uscite insieme. (They went out together)|
|Avere||Voi avete una bellissimo gatto. (You have a beautiful cat)||Noi non avevamo capito nulla. (We didn't understand nothing)|
How to choose the correct auxiliary verb
Usage of avere
Avere as auxiliary is used with:
transitive verbs in its active voice;
e.g. Io ho visto un bel film ieri. (I saw a good movie yesterday);
intransitive verbs with an agent as its subject;
e.g. Tu hai parlato con loro. (You talked with them); Voi avete camminato per ore. (You walked for hours).
List of verbs with avere as auxiliary
|Lavorare||Tu hai lavorato fino a tardi.||You worked till late.|
|Camminare||Egli ha camminato per arrivare a casa tua.||He walked to reach your house.|
|Ridere||Perché avete riso così tanto?||Why did you laugh so much?|
|Dormire||Il bambino ha dormito tutto il pomeriggio.||The child slept for all the afternoon.|
Usage of essere
Essere as auxiliary is used with:
intransitive verbs as moving, stative and changing verbs:
e.g. La nonna è rimasta a casa. (Grandma stayed at home).
- reflexive verbs: e.g. Mi sono lavato. (I washed myself);
- impersonal verbs: e.g. Si era capito che non aveva studiato. (It was clear he hasn't studied).
List of verbs with essere as auxiliary
|Arrivare||Mia zia è arrivata ieri mattina.||My aunt arrived yesterday morning.|
|Scoppiare||Sono scoppiati tutti i palloncini.||All the baloons have burst.|
|Cadere||Il bambino è caduto mentre correva.||The boy has fallen while he was running.|
|Andare||Come è andato il tuo esame?||How was your exam?|
|Venire||Ieri è venuta con noi.||She came with us yesterday.|
|Stare||Credevo saresti stata a casa di tuo fratello.||I thought you would have stayed at your brother's.|
|Tornare||Come mai siete tornate qui?||Why did you come back here?|
|Nascere||Ieri è nata mia cugina.||Yesterday my cousin is born.|
|Chiamarsi||Quella città è chiamata la Città del Sole.||That city is called the City of Light.|
|Arrabbiarsi||Voi vi siete arrabbiati molto.||You really got angry.|
|Lavarsi||Tu ti sei sempre lavato la sera.||You have always washed yourself in the evening.|
Verbs with both essere and avere
There are some verbs that don't follow strictly this distinction.
Remember! You could find verbs with both essere and avere.
Unfortunately, there are not a clear way to identify these verbs.
The presence of essere or avere could depend on:
- the subject, if it's animate or inanimate:
e.g. L'uomo ammalato è migliorato. (The sick man is getting better); Il tempo è migliorato. (The weather cleared).
- the meaning:
e.g. L'aereo ha volato per ore. (The plane has flown for hours); L'aereo è volato a Los Angeles. (The plane flew to Los Angeles).
List of some verbs with both avere and essere as auxiliary verbs
Ho vissuto in Inghilterra.
Sono vissuto in Inghilterra.
|I lived in England.|
Sono corso alla fermata dell'autobus.
Ho corso una maratona.
|I ran to the bus station.
I ran the marathon.
Hai finito presto i compiti.
Il film è finito tardi.
|You have finished your homework soon.
The movie finished late at night.
Practise with a private teacher on Skype!
- Private Skype lessons
- Learn any topic
- Flexible appointments
Italian teacher and translator
I teach: Italian
Hello EverybodyMy name is Luisa and I teach Italian for foreign students, English, French and German for Italian students Since... 1994, I have dedicated myself to translating and teaching thanks to my travels, abroad studies, foreign reading and writing. I provide fun and customized lessons based on the student's goals. I also triy to minimize English speaking during the lessons. I give homework exercises, and my lessons are intermixed with grammar, conversation, customs and traditions. My goal is to make certain that each student finds learning Italian exciting.I am available for any explanations also via e mail Read more
Italian and German as a foreign language
I teach: German, Italian
Hi! I am Donatella, I'm Italian and I have been living in Vienna since 2009. I teach Italian and German as a foreign language. I really... like teaching and I enjoy it! Every day I have the great chance to work together with people with different ages, backgroung and learning goals. Thanks to my job I can broaden and deepen my knowledge and skills and of course meet people from all over the world.Foreign languages represent my first interest, as a learner too. After having experienced a distance learning course I find the e-learning a personal, specific and practical method to learn, improve or polish up a foreign language! I would be glad to hear from you! Read more
Italian class and cils exam preparation with Alessia
I teach: Italian
Hello guys I am Alessia, I am Italian and I am an italian teacher for foreigners, since 2012. I love my work and that is why I prefer to say... that I am a linguistic and cultural ambassador and not just a teacher. I have lots of experience with young people as well as with adults of all levels (from the basic to the superior level (initial, intermediate, advanced and superior: C2). Classes are generally OTO (one to one) and focus on the conversation and the needs of the students. I usually teach online and in presence because I also work in a language school. Read more