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Italian Present Tense

Level A1


In today's lesson we will study step by step how to form and use the present Indicative of Italian verbs, in particular the regular verbs.

Before reaching the fulcrum of the lesson it is opportune to analyze the structure of the verb in the Italian language: to conjugate any verb of the Italian language you just need to start from the infinitive which is distinct in three different groups ending in: -are, -ere, - ire.


Infinitive form → present tense

cantare → canto

leggere → leggo

sentire → sento


As you can see from these examples in every verb there always is:

• a constant element called a verbal root.

• a different thematic vowel for each conjugation.

• a last variable part called desinence which is essential to identify the mode, time, person and number.











Each group or conjugation uses different terminations, here are some examples of regular verbs of the first conjugation in -are:














As you can see, the verbs of the first group use the verbal root of the verb, the thematic vowel which is visible in almost all person forms except in “io” and “tu”, and then the desinence.


The regular verbs of the second conjugation include verbs ending in –ere at the infinitive form. The only difference from the first conjugation is the thematic vowel "e" visible in almost all person forms:
















The regular verbs of the third conjugation include verbs ending in –ire at the infinitive form. These also use a different thematic vowel "i" present in almost all the person forms of the conjugation:
















This last group has also a peculiarity: some verbs add before the typical ending of the conjugation, the suffix -isc, but not for all the person forms.

Let's see what they are:














As you may have noticed, person form “noi” and “voi” don't add the suffix -isc.

When I explain this peculiarity of the verbs of conjugation -ire, many people ask me how to understand when to add this suffix and when not: in reality there is no rule, so the only thing that can be done is to memorize a list of verbs that have the suffix “-isc” like the one I have showed to you before.

If it’s the first time you are studying this topic, I recommend to practice a lot, trying to conjugate verbs to the present tense and re-read them aloud.


I hope this short post has been helpful and that you enjoyed it. If you want to test yourself with the different conjugations of regular verbs, I leave you some exercises (and solution) below.

Don't forget to leave a comment for any suggestion or if you want to ask a question.

A presto!



Exercise 1: Complete the following sentences using ARE regular verbs.

1. Se avete tempo, perché non ( sfogliare ) ___________ una rivista italiana?

2. ( tu - mandare ) ___________ molti messaggi con il telefonino?

3. Di solito dove ( parcheggiare ) _______ la macchina, quando siete in centro?

4. Chi ( accompagnare )_______ Simona a casa? Io ho fretta!

5. Quando ho tempo e soldi, ( viaggiare ) __________ all’estero.

6. Michele ( guidare ) ____________ la macchina senza avere la patente.


Exercise 2: Choose the correct ERE verb .

1. Chiara _____ in ordine la sua casa ogni giorno.

a) mette b) mete

2. Noi non ______ sempre le parole nuove del libro.

a) ripetete b) ripetiamo

3. Gli studenti usano la matita per ___________ gli esercizi di grammatica.

a) scriviamo b) scrivere

4. Per andare in ufficio _________ l'autobus n. 3.

a) prendiamo b) prendere

5. Io ________ il giornale ogni domenica.

a) leggio b) leggo


Exercise 3: Complete the following sentences using IRE regular verbs.

1. Il treno ( partire ) _____________ sempre in orario.

2. Giorgio non ( capire ) ________ niente.

3. ( io - soffrire ) ____________ di un terribile mal di testa.

4. Le donne ( pulire ) _______________ il palazzo.

5. Quando ( tu - restituire ) _______ i soldi a Giulio?

6. A che ora ( tu - finire ) ____________ la lezione di yoga?

7. Alfredo e Monica ( preferire ) ____ studiare in biblioteca.


Exercise 4: fill the empty space using the correct -ISC verb.

1. Le belle giornate ____________ (FINIRE) presto.

2. Paolo ama la carne, mentre io (PREFERIRE) __________ il pesce.

3. Maria ___________(PULIRE) la cucina tutti i giorni.

4. Guardo i film in italiano, ma non _________ (CAPIRE) bene.

5. Loro ____________ (PREFERIRE) uscire la sera.

6. I nuovi vicini __________ (COSTRUIRE) una nuova casa.


Solutions:


Ex 1: 1)Sfogliate 2)mandi 3)parcheggiate 4)accompagna 5)viaggio 6)guida


Ex 2: 1)a 2)b 3)b 4)a 5)b


Ex 3: 1)parte 2)capisce 3)soffro 4)puliscono 5)restituisci 6)finisci 7)preferiscono


Ex 4: 1)finiscono 2)preferisco 3)pulisce 4)capisco 5)preferiscono 6)costruiscono

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