The majority of verbs in Italian end in -are, like parlare (“to speak”). They are said to belong to the first conjugation. (There are also verbs that end in -ere and -ire. These belong to the second and third conjugations respectively).
To conjugate a verb in Italian, you need to remove the -are, -ere, -ire ending from the infinitive (the form tha you find in the dictionary). What is left is called the stem, which does not change in the vast majority of Italian verbs. The stem serves as the base to which we add endings; there is a different ending for each person.
Here are the endings for all regulars verbs ending in -are taking as an example the verb parlare (“to speak”):
|IO (I)||PARLO||Parlo giapponese.||I speak Japanese.|
|TU (YOU)||PARLI||Parli francese?||Do you speak French?|
|LUI/LEI (HE/SHE)||PARLA||Mariano parla greco.||Mariano speaks Greek.|
|NOI (WE)||PARLIAMO||Parliamo italiano.||We speak Italian.|
|VOI (YOU)||PARLATE||Parlate cinese?||Do you speak Chinese?|
|LORO (THEY)||PARLANO||Jo e Sara parlano portoghese.||Jo and Sara speak Portuguese.|
The present is used for:
- events happening in the present
- habitual actions
- current states of being and conditions
- actions planned to occur in the future
Remember to keep practising your Italian every day to see some results 🙂
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