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Italian Definite Article

As you know, Italian words are divided into 2 groups: masculine and feminine gender. As well the articles.

As in English, in Italian we put the article before the noun, but in English the definite article is only one (the); in Italian when the noun is masculine (look at the dictionary) we have 3 type of article in singular and 2 type in plural. Look at the table:

Masculine articles

Singular Plural
IL (Before a noun that begins with a consonant, except “s + consonant“; “ps“; “gn“; “z“; “y“ and “z“)IL Ragazzo; IL Libro; IL Cellulare; IL Vino I (If you use IL in singular, you have to use I in plural)

I Ragazzi; I Libri; I Cellulari; I Vini

LO (before a noun that begins with “s + consonant“; “ps“; “gn“; “z“; “y“ and “z“)LO STudente; LO SPort; LO PSicologo; LO Yogurt; LO Zaino; GLI (If you use LO in singular, you have to use GLI in plural) GLI Studenti; GLI Sport; Gli Psicologi; Gli Yogurt; GLI Zaini
L’ (before a noun that begins with a vowel or with h: h is silent!)L’ Orologio; L’Amico; L’Ufficio; L’Hotel GLI (If you use L’ in singular, you have to use GLI in plural) GLI Orologi; GLI Amici; GLI Uffici; Gli Hotel

When the noun is feminine (look at the dictionary) we have 2 type of article in singular and 1 type in plural. Look at the table:

Feminine articles

LA (Before a noun that begins with a consonant) LA Casa; La Ragazza; La Bottiglia LE (With all feminine words) LE Case; Le Ragazze; Le Bottiglie
L’ (before a noun that begins with a vowel) L’Amica; L’Alice; L’Onda; L’Aspirina LE Amiche; LE Alici; LE Onde; LE Aspirine

Now try to do your homework: Click here
or
Go to the Italian noun

18 Responses to “Italian Definite Article”

  1. collin said

    i’m a begginer in italian lesson………can you give some advice in my italian…i need to learn it in 5months…should i start with preposizione? then what’s next aggettivo? o avverbi ?

    i need help
    (T_T)
    collin

    grazie..

    • Monica said

      Ciao, I’m sorry, but you cannot start learning prepositions first😦
      You have to learn verbs in present tense and some prepositions, then “passato prossimo” and more prepositions and after “pronomi diretti e indiretti” …

      But remember: you have to practise the language everyday! You have to speak, speak, speak Italian😉

      Ps If you need help, you can contact me and I will be happy to teach you Italian: I offer Italian tuitions in Rome and I speak only Italian with my students🙂

      Anyway, if you have any more questions about grammar, I will be happy to answer them here🙂

      Best wishes

    • Eduardo said

      My advice would be to start learning with numbers, adjectives, and the normal everyday vocal and grammar.
      Such as:
      veloce-fast
      lento- slow

      11-undici
      12-dodici
      13- tredici

      mi chiamo…
      ha______ anni
      abito a
      il mio compleanno e

      These should help u start

      Regards,
      Eduardo

  2. christian said

    hey

    im learning Italian and im finding trouble learning the definite articles.

    Is there an easy way to learn them like a trick or something.

    Thanks Chrstian

    • Monica said

      Ciao Christian, non conosco trucchi (=trick) per imparare gli articoli😦
      ma è molto importante leggere, leggere, leggere …
      Ti suggerisco di memorizzare qualche esempio (con le flash card o con le canzoni). Inizia con parole semplici:
      IL tavolo – LA sedia
      I tavoli – LE sedie

      L’Amico – L’ amica
      GLI Amici – LE amiche

      Lo STudente – LA studentessa
      GLI STudenti – LE studentesse

      Piano piano tutto diventa più facile.

  3. lucky said

    Ciao, monica … im new in italy and want to learn italian…. plz make a simpel index to learn italian simply and easier….. im thank full to you……

  4. Paul Friedman said

    Dear Monica: I am looking for a translation of “z’il”, which I thought was French, but may be Italian! Any idea?

  5. Emma Campbell said

    This is a great comprehensive explanation!

    I remember when I was learning Italian in the beginning and I remember my teacher starting off quite simply with simply

    Masculine Feminine
    Singular il la
    Plural i le

    And we were given a list of nouns that followed this simple table. Slowly slowly we introduced to each of the other more complex categories.

    I found it useful as it gave you a small amount of knowledge and as your vocabulary expanded you were introduced to the other articles, until you were eventually introduced to all articles.

    Sometimes learning a small amount at a time is more productive than all at once.

    Thanks for this website it is amazing, clear and a great tool for people to learn italian.

  6. christie said

    thx it helped

  7. Diego said

    Hello there! I’m learning both german and english languages and I want to learn italian, would you help me please? I like languages and the culture that they may have. thanks a lot for your time, greetings from Chile.

    • Monica said

      Certo Diego, io ti posso aiutare. La prima cosa è provare a leggere in italiano, ascoltare musica italiana e studiare qualche regola della grammatica italiana. Insomma, comincia ad usare il mio blog e fammi tutte le domande che vuoi🙂
      Buono studio

  8. Wahyu said

    Ciao, Monica.
    Sono Indonesiano.
    Sono nuovo a Italiano.
    Mi sento confuso di uso di articolo “Gli”.
    Mi correggi i frasi “Gli amici sono arrivati alla mia casa”.
    È sbagliato?

    Sto aspettando la risposta.
    Grazie mille, Monica.

    • Monica Corrias said

      Ciao e benvenuto!

      L’articolo GLI si usa con i nomi maschili [masculine] plurali che iniziano con / before a noun that begins with: a vowel or with h or with “s + consonant”; “ps“; “gn“; “z“; “y“ and “z“

      gli amici; gli orologi; gli hotel; gli studenti; gli gnocchi …

      La frase “sono nuovo a Italiano” non funziona. Forse vuoi dire sono nuovo nello studio dell’italiano? o meglio “studio italiano da poco tempo
      La frase “Gli amici sono arrivati alla mia casa” è corretta, ma io scriverei “I miei amici sono arrivati a casa mia”

      A presto e buono studio!

  9. Dhan said

    Hey I am learning itilan and I need help wit the plurals and adjectives of the definite articles

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