Functions and classification of Italian verbs
Verbs are used to express actions or a state of being. They offer information on the subject either explaining what he/she does or his/her qualities.
Functions of the verbs in Italian
Italian verbs differ based on the following features:
Predicative and copulative Italian verbs
Predicative verbs (verbi predicativi) carry lexical meaning. The majority of Italian verbs fall within this category.
Copulative verbs (verbi copulativi) carry meaning only if they connect the subject to an adjective or a name.
Italian verb forms
Verbs can be active, passive, reflexive and pronominal. When the subject performs the action, we talk about active form (forma attiva), while when the subject is acted upon by the verb, we talk about passive form (forma passiva). Reflexive verbs (verbi riflessivi) are verbs whose direct object and subject are the same. Pronominal verbs (verbi pronominali) are accompanied by a pronoun.
Italian moods and tenses
Mood indicates the attitude of the speaker. Italian moods are made up of are four finite moods (indicative, subjunctive, conditional and imperative) and three non - finite moods (infinitive, participle and gerund).
Tense refers to the chronological relationship between when the action takes place and the moment in which the utterance takes place. The Italian verb tenses are: present, past and future.
- Ieri ho pulito la mia camera (Yesterday I cleaned my bedroom)
- Quest'estate andrò a Roma (I'm going to Rome this summer)
- Luisa parla tre lingue (Luisa speaks three languages)
Person and number in Italian
The person identifies who the subject of the utterance is. It can be 1st person (io, noi), 2nd person (tu, voi) or 3rd person (egli, essi).
Number refers to whether the subject is singular (io, tu, egli) or plural (noi, voi, essi).
- Noi suoniamo la chiatarra (We play the guitar)
- Io sono Italiana (I am Italian)
- Essi guidano la macchina (They drive a car)
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