Un/una meaning?

When would un/una mean "one", rather than "a/an"?

January 6, 2018


Think of it like this. In English we have two ways of referencing non specific objects. "A" and "an". We say "a car", "a cat", "a boat". We also say "an apple", "an animal", "an octopus". Think of "un", "una", "un' " and "uno" as the same thing as "a" and "an" in English. Its the exact same concept. Learning Italian, you have to know when to use each one of them. "Una porta" (a door), "un gatto" (a cat), "uno zoo" (a zoo), "un' arancia". Study the rules and learn them, it'll help you a lot going forward. Good luck and I hope this helps.

January 6, 2018

It means both, according to the context of the sentence:
Un libro. = A book.  or  One book.
Una penna. = A pen.  or  One pen.

January 6, 2018

I always get confused, too...

January 6, 2018

Uno = one

January 6, 2018

Only when counting (uno, due, tre), or with nouns that use lo as the masculine singular form of "the".

Uno studente
Uno zaino

For that matter, there is also un' for elided feminine nouns:


January 6, 2018
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