How to use “può darsi che”: Italian grammar lesson 218

Summary

Unlock the nuances of Italian conversation with our guide on “può darsi che”! Learn how to express doubt or uncertainty like a native, using the Italian subjunctive to convey your thoughts with finesse. 🇮🇹✨

  • Grasp “può darsi che”: Dive into the Italian phrase “può darsi che”, which translates to “it may be that”, perfect for times when you’re feeling unsure. 🤔
  • Subjunctive Mood Mastery: Discover how “può darsi che” triggers the subjunctive mood, a must-know for expressing doubts or hypotheticals in Italian. 📚
  • Present Subjunctive: Use Congiuntivo presente with “può darsi che” for current uncertainties. For example, “Può darsi che Marco non venga stasera” – “It may be that Marco is not coming tonight.” 🕒
  • Past Subjunctive: When looking back, pair “può darsi che” with Congiuntivo passato. Say “Può darsi che abbia detto la verità” to mean “It may be that she told the truth.” 🔙
  • Imperfect Subjunctive: For ongoing past doubts, opt for Congiuntivo imperfetto. “Può darsi che dicesse sul serio” translates to “It may be that he was talking seriously.” 🔄
  • Past Perfect Subjunctive: Use Congiuntivo trapassato for events prior to other past events. “Può darsi che non avesse capito la mia intenzione” means “It may be that he didn’t understand my intention.” ⏮️

My thoughts

What does può darsi che mean in Italian?

In this post, we’re going to focus on one of those expressions that are followed by the Italian subjunctive: the equivalent of it may be that.

We say può darsi che in Italian, which means it can be given that. And we use it when we’re not sure about what we’re going to say.

This is why it triggers the subjunctive, a tense that expresses doubt, uncertainty, or a hypothetical situation.

Let’s find out how to use può darsi che!

How to form può darsi che + subjunctive?

As we said, può darsi che is always followed by subjunctive verbs in all tenses.

These are the four subjunctive tenses you can use:

  1. Congiuntivo presente (present subjunctive) is used to talk about present events.
  1. Congiuntivo passato (past subjunctive) is used to discuss past events that happened at a specific time.
  1. Congiuntivo imperfetto (imperfect subjunctive) is used to speak about events in the past that happened over a prolonged period of time.
  1. Congiuntivo trapassato (past perfect subjunctive) is used to refer to an event that happened before another event, which may not necessarily be mentioned.

How to use può darsi che?

We say può darsi che when we’re doubting something.

This expression is a set phrase, so we always use those words together and never split them.

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We always use può in the present tense, even if we’re talking about something in the past.

If we’re referring to a past event, what is going to be in the past tense is the verb in the subjunctive, as you can see in the example:

Può darsi che non volesse parlare con te.

It may be that he didn’t want to speak to you.

Può darsi che: examples

Let’s have a look at some examples with the four subjunctive tenses:

  1. Congiuntivo presente

Può darsi che Marco non venga stasera.

It may be that Marco is not coming tonight.

  1. Congiuntivo passato

Secondo me può darsi che abbia detto la verità.

To me, it may be that she said the truth.

  1. Congiuntivo imperfetto

Può darsi che dicesse sul serio.

It may be that he was talking seriously.

  1. Congiuntivo trapassato

Può darsi che non avesse capito la mia intenzione.

It may be that he didn’t understand my intention.

What does "può darsi che" mean in Italian?

It can be translated as it maybe that or it can be given that.

How to form "può darsi che"?

We use it when we are doubting something so we always follow it with the subjunctive. It is possible to use all of its tenses.

Italian word of the day
passeggiata
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Hai voglia di fare una passeggiata?
Do you feel like going for a walk?
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7 Responses

    1. Ciao Anna! In Italian, the phrase “può darsi che” is typically followed by the subjunctive mood. This is because it’s used to express doubt, uncertainty, or a hypothetical situation. For example, “Può darsi che lui venga domani” translates to “It may be that he is coming tomorrow.” The verb “venga” is in the subjunctive mood. If you were to use the indicative mood instead, the sentence would lose its sense of uncertainty. I hope this helps! If you have any more questions, feel free to ask.

    1. Ciao Wendy!

      I’m Julieta, Stefano’s assistant.

      “Piuttosto che” is a congiunzione avversativa (adversative conjunction) and expresses a preference between two elements in a sentence.
      For example: Preferisco prendere l’aereo piuttosto che viaggiare per mare.
      It can be swapped for “invece di” o “anziché”.
      But be careful because it is an error to understand “piuttosto che” as an or.

      “Può darsi che” is an avverbio (adverb) which means it modifies the verb. In this case, is used for expressing that something could happen and that there is a certain probability but we are not 100% certain.
      For example: Può darsi che mi sbagli ma pare che tu sia arrabbiato con me.

      Please let me know if this explanation was clear enough for you to understand the difference.

  1. Ciao Stefano
    Hi visto una pubblicità sul tuo sito dicendo che ci sia un app . Puoi dirmi quando sarà disponibile per noi?
    Grazie
    Nigel

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