Comparison of Italian and Spanish
- Articles are much more complicated in Italian than in Spanish.
- In both languages, the indefinite articles are un (masculine)
and una (feminine). However, in Italian, un becomes
uno before a noun beginning with 's'+consonant, as in
uno studente, and in a few other cases. Also,
una becomes un' before a noun beginning with a vowel,
as in un' università.
- In Italian, the definite articles are il (masculine singular),
i (masculine plural), la (feminine singular) and
le (feminine plural). The Spanish equivalents are
el, los, la and las respectively.
However, in Italian, il becomes
lo before 's' + consonant and l'
before a vowel, la becomes l' before a vowel,
and i becomes gli before 's' + consonant or a vowel.
- The only change of this kind in Spanish is that la
becomes el before a stressed 'a', as in
el agua, el águila.
- Generally speaking, Italian uses articles more frequently than Spanish.
For example, 'Do you have another pen?' is Hai un'altra penna? in
Italian, but simply ¿Tienes otro boli? in Spanish.
There are exceptions, however: 'on the right' is a destra in
Italian but a la derecha in Spanish.
- Also, Italian has the so-called 'partitive article' construction, but
Spanish does not. For example 'I'd like some water' is Vorrei dell'acqua
in Italian but simply Querría agua in Spanish.
Created October 2006 by Adam N. Letchford.