Today’s free Italian grammar exercise is the first of ten at C1 (advanced) level.
I’m not giving you the link just yet, as there are a few things I want to say about it first. If you’re in a hurry, or don’t like reading, scroll down to get to the link RIGHT NOW! But then, don’t blame me if it all goes pear-shaped…
So, today’s topic is articles, in particular, when you need them and when you don’t.
I thought I’d start with this one because it looked quite easy – you should be able to get something out of it, no matter what your level in Italian.
Trying the exercise, I was pretty sure I’d be able to get them all correct, so imagine my horror when, at the first attempt, I only got six out of twelve!
Turns out that there’s a bit of a design weakness with the exercise itself – pay attention, unless you want to repeat my experience!
In each sentence there are TWO options, and sometimes one of them is a blank. If you think the correct answer is ‘no article’, you actually have to pick the blank from the dropdown menu.
I repeat – even though the gap is already blank, you have to actively pick the blank option from the dropdown, or the default blank is marked wrong.
Sorry about that… When I get a second, I’ll redesign it.
But anyway, apart from the rubbish design, it’s a good exercise and I learned a few things doing it.
For example, not being a soccer fan, I picked the wrong option from the dropdown for question 10 (be patient, you can take a look yourself in a minute!)
I couldn’t believe I was wrong, and so Googled the part that was giving me problems. This is what I found:
Jun 9, 2015 – La finale dei playoff della Serie B tra Bologna e Pescara è finita 1 a 1: il Bologna passa in serie A
That’s the headline from this webpage, if you’d like to read the whole article.
The point of the quote is the way the definite article is used here. You can work out for yourself which of the articles in the sentence I’m talking about, and if you’re unsure, today’s exercise will confirm it for you.
‘Well, I never knew that!’ was my reaction.
Which I guess is the point of C1 and C1 (advanced) level material.
Once you reach that stage with your Italian, you will, unlike me. probably have mastered all the obviously different and difficult grammar – conditionals, tenses, congiuntivo, and so on.
So what remains are just lots and lots of details.
Mostly what you don’t know at advanced level is lexical, but there are also some grammar bits and pieces too.
Which is what we have planned for you over the next few weeks: nine more C1 (advanced) exercises to come, and ten at C2 (proficiency).
One final point, before I give you the link to today’s exercise.
If you have a grammar doubt – to take a banal example, say you’re unsure if it should be ‘io vado’ or ‘io vai’ (hope not) – just type the thing that’s vexing you into your favorite search engine and see what comes up.
If you get some credible looking examples of ‘io vai’, in sentences which make some sense to you, then it’ll be good and you can go with it. If not (bet not, with this example), then you’ll need to think again.
Old translator’s trick. Works like a charm.
So finally, here’s the link to today’s exercise: Uso o omissione degli articoli
(Remember what I said about having to actively select the blanks…)
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