Passato Prossimo

The Passato Prossimo is a tense used to express past finished events and actions.

Ex. Ieri ho mangiato la pizza (Yesterday I had pizza)

      L’anno scorso sono andato in vacanza in Italia (Last year I went on holiday in Italy)

As you can see, the Passato Prossimo is composed by the auxiliary verb to have or to be and the Past Participle of the main verb.

To make the Past Participle you just have to take off –are/-ere/-ire and to add the correct ending:

ARE -> ATO (mangiare -> mangiato)

ERE -> UTO (vendere -> venduto)

IRE -> ITO (partire -> partito)

How to choose the auxiliary verb?

Generally, you have to use to be with the so-called “movement verbs”, as partire (to leave), andare (to go), tornare (to come back), arrivare (to arrive) and to have with all the others.

Ex. Ieri sono partito alle 10 di mattina (Yesterday I left at 10am)

      Anna è tornata a Londra la scorsa settimana (Anna came back to London last week)

      Martedì scorso ho cucinato per i miei amici (Last Tuesday I cooked for my friends)

      Ho frequentato un corso di Italiano all’università (At university I attended an Italian course)

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