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September’s Italian Made Fun & Simple


This week’s lesson is on conjugating regular Italian verbs ending with -ERE in the present tense

Let’s quickly review the definition of the term “infinitive.” An infinitive is a verb form that functions as a substantive while retaining certain verbal characteristics, such as modification by adverbs, and that in English may be preceded by to, as in “to walk.”

As indicated in previous lessons, there are three main categories of Italian Verbs known as 1st, 2nd and 3rd conjugation. Here as reinforcement is the most obvious, initial difference;

1st conjugation verbs are verbs that end with the letters ARE in the infinitive form. (Previous lesson)

2nd conjugation verbs are verbs that end with the letters ERE in the infinitive form.

3rd conjugation verbs are verbs that end with the letters IRE in the infinitive form. (future lesson)

(These ending are “infinitive endings”)

The basic rule for conjugating all three conjugations is the same. That is, remove the three-letter ending and adding various endings to the remaining stem. To illustrate how to conjugate an ERE verb, a math-like equation is our example, but first here are the conjugated endings for ERE verbs:

Subject Pronoun Ending

Io o

Tu i

Lui/Lei e

Noi iamo

Voi ete

Loro ono

To conjugate = infinitive verb – infinitive ending = verb stem + conjugated ending = conjugated verb. Example:

Vedere (to see) – ere = Ved + iamo (ending for we) = Vediamo (we see)

Vedere conjugated in the present tense

Io Vedo I see

Tu Vedi You see

Lui/Lei Vede He/She/It sees

Noi Vediamo We see

Voi Vedete Y’all see

Loro Vedono They see

Note that in the 2nd conjugation that the endings for io, tu, and noi are the same as the 1st–are conjugation verbs, respectively o, i, and iamo.  The remaining form of lui/lei, voi, and loro are just a matter of a one letter difference from their correspondening 1stconjugation –are verbs.

Try your newly acquire knowledge by filling in the blanks with the correct form of the verb in the parenthesis:

1. Loro ____________ (perdere) sempre, non sono molto bravi.

2. Michaelangelo ____________ (dipingere) .

3. (tu) _____________ (correre) 

4. Layla _______ (crescere) molto veloce.

5. Ogni volta che chiamo Laura, Giulia e Paola, loro non __________ (rispondere)

6. Voi ___________ (vedere) il sole?

7. Mia mamma _________(scrivere) tante email.

8. Loro _______(leggere) tanti libri.

9. Noi ____________ (vincere) sempre.

Answers will appear in the next lesson.

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