Adverb or Adjective?
Words like molto and troppo can be adverbs or adjectives, depending on how they are used in a sentence. In this post, you’ll learn How to Use Adverbs or Adjectives in Italian and the difference between them.
Adjectives must agree in gender (masculine or feminine) and number (singular or plural) with the noun they qualify, while the endings of adverbs never change.
Then, you must be able to tell when molto, troppo and other words like these are Italian adverbs.
Italian Adverbs have three possible uses
• They modify the meaning of verbs
Camminiamo lentamente/spesso/insieme/molto (We walk slowly/often/together/very much.)
• They modify the meaning of adjectives
Ho letto un libro veramente/piuttosto/proprio/molto interessante. (I have read a truly/rather/really/very interesting book)
• They modify the meaning of other adverbs
Camminiamo piuttosto/sempre/spesso/molto lentamente. (We walk rather/ always/often/very slowly)
Here are some sentences where molto and troppo are adverbs
Make sure you realize which type of word they modify:
|Non bevo mai molto la mattina.
|I never drink very much in the morning.
|Avete speso troppo!
|You have spent too much!
|Il clima inglese è davvero molto strano!
|The English climate is truly very strange!
|Questa radio è troppo piccola.
|This radio is too small.
|Non usciamo molto spesso con loro.
|We don’t go out with them very often.
|Sono arrivati troppo presto.
|They arrived too early.
When molto and troppo are adverbs, their endings do not change.
(To help you remember this rule, think of it this way: when it means ‘very’, molto doesn’t vary)
Use of Italian Adjectives:
When words like molto and troppo modify (or replace) a noun, they are adjectives (or pronouns) and as such, they need to agree with that noun,
Molto and Troppo as Adjectives
|Faccio molte passeggiate in campagna
|I take many walks in the countryside
|In centro c’è sempre molta gente.
|There are always many people in the centre.
|Molti vanno al cinema la domenica.
|Many (people) go to the cinema on Sundays
|Ho preso troppo sole e mi sono scottata la schiena.
|I caught too much sun and got my back sunburnt.
|La frutta mi piace davvero e ne mangio sempre molta.
|I really like fruit and I always eat lots (of it).
|Non guardo più i film western, ne ho visti troppi da bambina.
|I don’t watch westerns anymore, I saw too many of them as a child.
Be particularly careful when molto and troppo are pronouns.
In sentences containing the pronoun ne, molto and troppo must agree with the noun replaced by ne
(i.e. molta frutta and troppi film in the fifth and sixth sentences above).
Here is a table of the words which follow these rules:
|Meaning as Adverbs
|Meanings as Adjectives
|a great deal of
|a considerable amount, several
|not much, not many
|very little, very few
|so much, so many
|really so very
|really so much, so many
|too much, too many
Using Tutto, Qualche and Ogni correctly – How to Use Adverbs or Adjectives in Italian
When it is an adjective, tutto is followed by the article/demonstrative and the noun it refers to and agrees with the noun in gender and number.
An adjective followed by the article
|tutto il giorno
|tutti i giorni
|tutto il libro
|the whole book
|tutti i libri
|all of the books, every book
|tutta la casa
|the entire house
|tutte le case
|all of the houses, every house
|tutto lo spettacolo
|tutti gli spettacoli
|the whole show all shows
|this entire year
|tutti questi anni
|all these years
|tutta quella folla
|all that crowd
|tutte quelle ragazze
|all those girls
If there is a numeral, this is preceded by e, but tutto still agrees with the noun,
Tutto with Numeral
|tutti e due i miei genitori
|both of my parents
|tutti e quattro i libri
|all four books
|tutte e venti le lettere
|all twenty letters
|tutte e cinque queste caramelle
|all five of these sweets
Ogni and Qualche are always followed by a singular noun.
Ogni singular noun has the same meaning as tutti/tutte + article + plural noun,
|ogni giorno = tutti i giorni
|ogni mattina = tutte le mattine
Despite being always followed by a singular noun, the meaning of qualche is always plural, as in:
|a few days
|a few weeks
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