Mind, pronouns are little words that replace persons or things. The direct object pronouns replace the object (the thing or person) and take the place of the noun. The direct object pronoun receives the action of the verb directly: there is no preposition after the verb!
For example, after the verb “To invite” we don’t have the preposition “to” > I invited her. “Her” is the “direct object pronoun“, but the verb “to talk” need the preposition “to” before the pronoun > I will talk to him: “to him” in Italian is an indirect object pronoun!
Generally the object pronouns are before the verb, but they are after the verb in the infinitive or in the imperative mood. Before a vowel, singular pronouns use an apostrophe.
|Pronomi oggetto diretto||Direct object pronouns|
|Lo||Him/It (masculine – sing.)|
|La||Her/It (feminine – sing.)|
|Li||Them (masculine – pl.)|
|Le||Them (feminine – pl.)|
Some examples in present tense (pronouns are before the verb):
|Prendo il coltello = I take the knife||becomes||Lo prendo = I take it|
|Mangio una mela = I eat an apple||La mangio = I eat it|
|Incontro Marco = I meet Marco||L'(=lo) incontro = I meet him|
|Incontro Maria = I meet Maria||L'(=la) incontro = I meet her|
|Taglio I pomodori = I cut the tomatoes||Li taglio = I cut them|
|Affetto le melanzane = I slice the eggplants||Le affetto = I slice them|