• Imperfetto

     
     

    Imperfetto – is another form of the past tense that is used in the following situations:

    1. feelings: Ero triste. I was sad. Avevo fame. I was hungry. (I had hunger).
    2. descriptions: Il cielo era grigio. The sky was gray.
    3. age:  Avevo dieci anni.  I was ten years old (I had ten years.)
    4. time: Erano le tre.  It was three o'clock. (They were the hours three.)
    5. weather: Pioveve. It was raining.  Faceva bello. It was a beautiful day.
    6. A habitual action in the past that you no longer do today ;“used to” or “were”: Abitavo in Italia. I used to live in Italy.
    7. Da bambino... Da giovane... (when I was a kid/young...) Da bambino non mangiavo i pomodori. As a child I didn't used to eat tomatoes.
    8. A continuing action: Leggevo tutta la giornata. I was reading all day.
    9. Parallel actions connected by the word "mentre" (while): Maria cucinava mentre Marco puliva. Maria was cooking while Marco was cleaning.
    10. An interupted action. I bambini dormivano quando Marco ha telefonato.  The children were sleeping when Marco called.

     

     

                                                                Parlare (parl-)

    Io

    Parlavo

    Noi

    Parlavamo

    Tu

    Parlavi

    Voi

    Parlavate

    Lui/Lei

    Parlava

    Loro

    Parlavano

     

                                                                Scrivere (scriv-)

     

    Io

    Scrivevo

    Noi

    Scrivevamo

    Tu

    Scrivevi

    Voi

    Scrivevate

    Lui/Lei

    Scriveva

    Loro

    Scrivevano

     

    Dormire (dorm-)

     

    Io

    Dormivo

    Noi

    Dormivamo

    Tu

    Dormivi

    Voi

    Dormivate

    Lui/Lei

    Dormiva

    Loro

    Dormivano

     

           Note: -ire (isc) verbs in the present tense, function like regular -ire verbs in the Imperfetto; that is, there is no "isc" before the ending in the Imperfetto.

     

    There is only one completely irregular verb: Essere

                                                                Essere- to be   

    Io

    Ero

    Noi

    Eravamo

    Tu

    Eri

    Voi

    Eravate

    Lui/Lei

    Era

    Loro

    Erano

     

    The verbs bere (bev)-/fare (fac-)/dire (dic-) all take the same irregular base that they use in the present tense but then they ALL take the ERE imperfetto endings.

                                                                Bere (bev)

     

    Io

    Bevevo

    Noi

    Bevevamo

    Tu

    Bevevi

    Voi

    Bevevate

    Lui/Lei

    Beveva

    Loro

    Bevevano

     

                                                               

     

     

    Dire (dic-)

     

    Io

    Dicevo

    Noi

    Dicevamo

    Tu

    Dicevi

    Voi

    Dicevate

    Lui/Lei

    Diceva

    Loro

    Dicevano

     

                                                               

    Fare (fac-)

     

    Io

    Facevo

    Noi

    Facevamo

    Tu

    Facevi

    Voi

    Facevate

    Lui/Lei

    Faceva

    Loro

    Facevano

     

     Note the following key words that often indicate the Imperfetto when speaking in the past:

     

    ·      Anni fa (years ago)

    ·      Di dolito (usually)

    ·      Sempre (always)

    ·      Una volta (once)

    ·      C’era una volta (once upon a time)

    ·      Il lunedì (every monday)