Like in English, in Italian we use the passive voice to move the emphasis away from the doer and place it on the receiver of the action or the action itself.
Have a look at the two examples below and pay attention to the difference in terms of meaning:
Noi firmeremo il contratto.
We will sign the contract.
Il contratto sarà firmato da noi.
The contract will be signed by us.
In this post, we’re going to focus on how to form the passive voice with the verb andare.
Passive voice with essere
To form the passive voice in Italian, we use the verb essere followed by the past participle of the main verb, as in the examples below:
Il pranzo è servito alle 12.
Lunch is served at 12.
Questi palazzi sono stati costruiti negli anni 80.
These buildings were built in the 80s.
Since we use the verb essere to form the passive voice, the past participle has to agree in gender and number with the subject.
So, the past participle will en in -o, -a, -i, or -e depending on whether the subject is masculine or feminine, and singular or plural.
Passive voice with andare
Interestingly, in Italian, the passive can also be formed with the verb andare followed by the past participle of the main verb.
So, this is the structure:
- Conjugated form of the verb venire + past participle of the main verb
This means we don’t always need the verb essere when we want to use the passive voice.
We use the verb andare in the passive voice to express obligation or necessity. It’s the Italian equivalent of the English “must”.
In fact, it is used exactly like dovere + essere + past participle (has to be, must be).
The following two sentences in Italian are synonyms:
Le tasse vanno pagate.
Le tasse devono essere pagate.
Taxes must be paid.
Conjugation of the verb andare
The verb andare is irregular.
We usually use the present tense of the verb andare in the passive voice.
So, let’s see (or review) the conjugation of the verb andare in the present tense:
- Io vado, tu vai, lui/lei va, noi andiamo, voi andate, loro vanno
You’ll notice we mainly use va and vanno.
Now you’re ready to see some more examples of passive voice with the verb andare.
Practice with QuizletHere's a set of flashcards and quizzes to practice this grammar topic.
Passive voice with andare: examples
Let’s have a look at some examples:
I diritti umani vanno rispettati.
Human rights must be respected.
Se il computer non funziona più va cambiato.
If the computer no longer works it has to be replaced by another one.
La vodka va bevuta fredda.
Vodka must be drunk cold.
Quando la legge è ingiusta va respinta.
When the law is unfair it must be rejected.
Le cose che ho detto non vanno dimenticate.
The things I said must not be forgotten.
Le sigarette vanno spente nel portacenere.
Cigarettes must be put out in the ashtray.
I libri vanno letti fino alla fine.
Books have to be read until the end.
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