Each other – l’un l’altro: Italian grammar lesson 155

To practice this grammar topic, take Lesson 155 of Ripeti Con Me!
one another italian
I want to learn:

How to say each other in Italian

In a previous lesson, we’ve seen one way of saying each other: with reciprocal verbs.

However, we did not talk about the pronouns l’uno and l’altro, which we will explain in this post.

These pronouns, on their own, are just two indefinite pronouns but, when used together, they take on a reciprocal meaning and can complement reciprocal verbs.

When used together, they become l’un l’altro (each other).

Let’s have a look at some examples:

Mario e Gianni si aiutano l’un l’altro.

Mario and Gianni help each other.

Noi ci rispettiamo l’un l’altro.

We respect each other.

L’un l’altro and a vicenda: when to use

each other italian

We will use these reciprocal pronouns when we want to emphasize that the action is reciprocal, or to make the sentence more clear, even after using a reciprocal verb.

In fact, the following sentences have basically the same meaning, but the second puts more emphasis on reciprocity.

In the third example, on the other hand, you will find the expression a vicenda, which also means each other.

Luca e Alberto si aiutano.

Luca and  Alberto help each other.

Luca e Alberto si aiutano l’un l’altro.

Luca and Alberto help each other.

Luca e Alberto si aiutano a vicenda.

Luca and Alberto help each other.

L’un l’altro with feminine nouns

how to say each other italian

When one of the nouns is feminine, we can change altro for altra, but we usually do not change un.

Free Guide
How to Learn Languages Fast

Have a look at the following example:

Giacomo e Maria si aiutano l’un l’altra.

Giacomo and Maria help each other.

Il ragazzo e la ragazza si amano l’un l’altra.

The boy and the girl love each other.

When building the sentence, it is good to have the masculine noun first and the feminine second so as to maintain the order of the mentioned genders in the pronouns, as we will not say l’una l’altro.

L’un l’altro with prepositions

gli uni degli altri

L’un l’altro can also be used with different prepositions separating the two words, depending on which preposition the verb used requires.

With essere sincero con (be honest with), for example, we will use l’uno con l’altro, while with fidarsi di qualcuno (to trust someone), we will use l’uno dell’altro, etc.

When they are separated by a preposition, the two pronouns need to agree with the gender and number of the nouns described. Have a look at the following examples:

Maria e Giulia sono sincere l’una con l’altra.

Maria and Giulia are honest with each other.

Bisogna fidarsi gli uni degli altri.

We must trust each other.

Io e te siamo fatte l’una per l’altra.

We are made for each other.

Noi non sappiamo niente le une delle altre.

We do not know anything about each other.

Still translating in your head? Wanna speak Italian for real? Check out Stefano's courses to think directly in Italian and become fluent fast!

Stefano

Italian language tutor, course author, and polyglot. After learning 12 languages, I can tell you that we all master languages by listening and mimicking. With my method, you'll be speaking Italian from Lesson 1.

Follow me to fluency

Receive my free resources once a week together with my best offers! No need to look around, just tell me where to send everything.
Choose your preferences:
Opt out at any time.

Leave a Reply

gift subscriptions
50% OFF
[COUPON]
stefano lodola italian teacher
Try my courses for free​
ripeti con me mockup sm
Overcome your Barriers

Anything holding you back from becoming fluent?
Get on the right track today with my free checklist!

pain learning languages checklist preview
How long to fluency?

Find out how long it will take you to master Italian!
Get on the right track in 3 minutes.

dolce vita logo

We're already friends!

Coming from Luca and Marina?
Here's a special deal for you!
Just tell me where I should send the coupon.

50% OFF
all language resources

We're already friends!

Coming from All Language Resources?
Here's a special deal for you!
Just tell me where I should send the coupon.

50% OFF
GRAB A COUPON NOW, REDEEM IT LATER
50% OFF

To receive free resources once a week together with my best offers, just tell me where to send everything. Opt out at any time.