portartela and portarmelo

Have a question about Italian grammar? Need a quick translation from Italian to English or vice versa? Post it here!
Post Reply
zollen
Posts: 100
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 3:44 pm
Location: Toronto, Canada

portartela and portarmelo

Post by zollen » Mon Nov 24, 2014 11:12 pm

I am confused about these two words.. How do I apply them correct? Are there any other form?
posso portartela
puo portarmelo domani

Geoff
Posts: 251
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 7:55 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: portartela and portarmelo

Post by Geoff » Mon Nov 24, 2014 11:45 pm

portartela (portare + te + la) means "bring it to you", where "it" is some feminine noun. Note that "ti" changes to "te" when used together with a 3rd person direct object pronoun ("la" in this case).

portarmelo (portare + me + lo) means "bring it to me", where "it" is a masculine noun. Similarly, "mi" changes to "me" because of the presence of "lo".

You attach the pronouns to the end of the infinitive (portare) like this when it follows a modal verb (potere, volere, dovere, sapere) although, if you prefer, you can also put them before the modal - eg "te la posso portare" instead of "posso portartela".

zollen
Posts: 100
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 3:44 pm
Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: portartela and portarmelo

Post by zollen » Mon Nov 24, 2014 11:53 pm

Geoff wrote:portartela (portare + te + la) means "bring it to you", where "it" is some feminine noun. Note that "ti" changes to "te" when used together with a 3rd person direct object pronoun ("la" in this case).

portarmelo (portare + me + lo) means "bring it to me", where "it" is a masculine noun. Similarly, "mi" changes to "me" because of the presence of "lo".

You attach the pronouns to the end of the infinitive (portare) like this when it follows a modal verb (potere, volere, dovere, sapere) although, if you prefer, you can also put them before the modal - eg "te la posso portare" instead of "posso portartela".

Can I apply the same concept to other verbs (i.e. fare, dare...etc)

Geoff
Posts: 251
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 7:55 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: portartela and portarmelo

Post by Geoff » Tue Nov 25, 2014 3:10 am

zollen wrote:
Geoff wrote:portartela (portare + te + la) means "bring it to you", where "it" is some feminine noun. Note that "ti" changes to "te" when used together with a 3rd person direct object pronoun ("la" in this case).

portarmelo (portare + me + lo) means "bring it to me", where "it" is a masculine noun. Similarly, "mi" changes to "me" because of the presence of "lo".

You attach the pronouns to the end of the infinitive (portare) like this when it follows a modal verb (potere, volere, dovere, sapere) although, if you prefer, you can also put them before the modal - eg "te la posso portare" instead of "posso portartela".

Can I apply the same concept to other verbs (i.e. fare, dare...etc)
Yes, but there are some special conditions.

With modals you can, as I said, put the pronouns before the main (modal) verb or tack them onto the infinitive. If you want to stress the main verb (I can do it), they must be attached to the infinitive, otherwise the choice is yours.

With most other verbs that take an infinitive, the pronouns are always attached to the infinitive although you can often put them before the main verb in informal speech.

With fare and lasciare in the so-called causative construction, pronouns always precede the main verb:

"Me lo fai pensare" (You make me think it) rather than "Fai pensarmelo"

With sembrare and parere they must be attached to the infinitive:

"Sembra crederlo" not "Lo sembra credere"

With verbs of perception (eg sentire), it gets complicated. The meaning of the sentence can change depending on where you put the pronoun(s). Some examples taken from the excellent book Using Italian by Kinder & Savini:

"Ho sentito cantarlo" means "I heard it being sung".

"L'ho sentito cantare" means either "I heard him singing" or "I heard it being sung".

"Ti ho sentito cantarlo" means "I heard you singing it" - note that the pronouns are split here - you can do that with verbs of perception but otherwise generally not.

"Ho sentito cantartelo" means " I heard it being sung to you".

"Te l'ho sentito cantare" means either "I heard you singing it" or "I heard it being sung to you".

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests