Easy Learning Italian

How to form adverbs - Easy Learning Grammar Italian

1  The basics

  • In English you can make an adverb from the adjective slow by adding –ly. You can do a similar kind of thing in Italian.
  • Here are some guidelines:
  • if the adjective ends in –o in the masculine, take the feminine form, ending in –a, and add –mente
Masculine adjectiveFeminine adjectiveAdverbMeaning
lentolentalentamenteslowly
fortunatofortunatafortunatamenteluckily
Cammina molto lentamente.He walks very slowly.
Fortunatamente non ha piovuto.Luckily, it didn’t rain.
  • if the adjective ends in –e for both masculine and feminine, just add –mente
AdjectiveAdverbMeaning
velocevelocementequickly, fast
correntecorrentementefluently
Parla correntemente l’italiano.She speaks Italian fluently.
  • if the adjective ends in –le, or –re, you drop the final e before adding –mente
AdjectiveAdverbMeaning
facilefacilmenteeasily
particolareparticolarmenteparticularly
Puoi farlo facilmente.You can easily do it.
Non è particolarmente buono.It’s not particularly nice.
TipDon’t try to make adverbs agree with anything – they always keep the same form.

2  Irregular adverbs

  • In Italian there are two kinds of adverbs which do not behave in the way just described. They are:
  • adverbs which are completely different from the adjective
  • adverbs which are exactly the same as the masculine adjective
  • The adverb related to buono (meaning good) is bene (meaning well). The adverb related to cattivo (meaning bad) is male (meaning badly).
Parlano bene l’italiano.They speak Italian well.
Ho giocato male.I played badly.
  • Words such as fast and hard can be both adjectives and adverbs:
  • a fast car
  • You’re driving too fast.
  • a hard question
  • He works very hard.
  • The same kind of thing happens in Italian: some adverbs are the same as the masculine adjective. The following are the most common ones:
  • chiaro (adjective: clear; adverb: clearly)
Il significato è chiar0.The meaning is clear.
Giulia parla chiaro.Giulia speaks clearly.
  • giusto (adjective: right, correct; adverb: correctly, right)
il momento giust0.the right moment.
Marco ha risposto giusto.Marco answered correctly.
  • vicino (adjective: near, close; adverb: nearby, near here)
È molto vicino.He’s very close.
I miei amici abitano vicino.My friends live nearby.
C’è una piscina vicino?Is there a swimming pool near here?
  • diritto (adjective: straight; adverb: straight on)
Il bordo non è diritto.The edge is not straight.
Siamo andati sempre diritto.We kept straight on.
  • certo (adjective: sure, certain; adverb: of course)
Non ne sono certo.I’m not sure.
Vieni stasera? – Certo!Are you coming this evening?
– Of course!
  • solo (adjective: alone, lonely; adverb: only)
Si sente solo.He feels lonely.
L’ho incontrata solo due volte.I’ve only met her twice.
  • forte (adjective: strong, hard; adverb: fast, hard)
È più forte di me.He’s stronger than me.
Correva forte.He was running fast.
  • molto (adjective: a lot of; adverb: a lot, very, very much)
Non hanno molto denaro.They haven’t got a lot of money.
Quel quadro mi piace molto.I like that picture a lot.
  • poco (adjective: little, not very much; adverb not very much, not very)
Hai mangiato poco riso.You haven’t eaten very much rice.
Viene in ufficio poco spesso.She doesn’t come to the office very often.
  • Note that although these adverbs look like adjectives, they NEVER change their form.
Key points
  • You generally make adverbs by adding –mente to adjectives.
  • Adverbs never agree with anything.
  • Some adverbs have the same form as the masculine adjective.

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