"I cani sono miei."

Translation:The dogs are mine.

April 4, 2013



Easy explanation for those of you who don't understand when to say sono miei and when to say sono i miei:

  • I cani sono miei = The dogs are mine (I'm not saying I own dogs, you don't know if I do, you don't know if I've ever owned dogs, I'm just saying these dogs are mine).
  • I cani sono i miei (cani) = The dogs are my dogs (I'm clearly specifying I do own dogs, and I'm specifying these ones are them. They're not just some random dogs I happen to own, they are THE dogs that I own, they are my dogs).

It might not be a very clear explanation, sorry.

September 4, 2014


I must be a tad dim. I do not really understand the distinction you are making here. Can someone try explaining it a different way? Thanks.

March 20, 2017


I think the first one is more impersonal and the second is more personal, saying you KNOW they are yours rather than you THINK they are yours.

March 30, 2017


Yes! Yes! Grazie! Ora capisco!!!

August 29, 2017


What did you say

April 30, 2019


I read (not sure if true) that for things (il mio piatto, il mio bicchiere, il mio orologio, ecc) you must use the article, but for family it is not necessary (mia sorella, mio fratello, ecc). If true then it depends if you see the animal as family or not. Maybe someone could confirm this, please.

February 26, 2019


So it's like the personal "a" in Spanish! Very helpful thank you.

May 10, 2019


In fact, it's an excellent explanation. Straight, to the point. I understand my mistake now. : )

January 16, 2016



August 22, 2018


E una buon explicatione!

March 7, 2019


(spiegazione) :-)

March 9, 2019


Why not: I cani sono i miei?

April 4, 2013


With or without the article, both work :)

April 4, 2013


Doulingo doesn't accept with article. Previously this formula has come up only with article. I missed one heart because I wasn't taught properly.

April 5, 2013


this is a listening practice. you should write what you listen, not what is correct.

May 7, 2013


The trouble with that, is that the audio is SO distorted. I'm always getting things wrong because I can't understand the audio even after listening several times, it's so annoying!

May 11, 2013


very true many at times you don't heat many words in the sentence... let along "i"

May 12, 2017


I know if I'm having trouble with the listening exercises, I just turn off speaker in settings so it doesn't play listening exercises. I'm sure they'd be exercises elsewhere that serve as a substitute, or you can pop the words into Google translate (which I find has a clearer and more accurate voice anyway).

June 28, 2014


I have the same problem!

November 16, 2014


By me it wasn't a listening exercise..

August 25, 2015


You do not need the article before "mio/mia/mie/miei" if the possessive adjective is alone as a predicate. It is required in most other cases.

November 11, 2014


It's optional when the possessive adjective is alone following a form of "essere," e.g. "è mio" (it's mine).

July 24, 2017


I'm guessing, because I did the same thing: Because "I cani" is so close?

August 29, 2017


I agree, "I cavalli sono I miei" was correct.

June 15, 2014


why was the previous sentence: the horses are mine...translated by duo to: i cavalli sono i miei. This sentence does not have the article before miei. Why?

August 31, 2013


Someone who's more advanced in Italian than me might have a better answer, but from what I've experienced, you don't actually need the article in this kind of sentence. Looks like it's optional? I'd actually like to know this for certain too.

August 31, 2013


If anybody figures it out, let me know! I'm also confused about when the article might be optional.

February 1, 2014


I think it ought to be optional, but Duo counts it wrong here if you used the article "i."

May 1, 2018


I wonder if it is because cats and dogs live with the family. Are they considered part of the family and so an exception?

December 7, 2013


I don't think this can be the reason because I've seen this with various words. I'd like to know what the proper rules are!

December 7, 2013


Is the same you can say with or without it

February 20, 2015


It's optional when the possessive adjective is alone following a form of "essere," e.g. "è mio" (it's mine).

July 24, 2017


really don't get this. The horses are mine and the dogs are mine. One has i miei and the other just miei. If the article isn't important, is it that Duolingo doesn't have it correctly or..?

January 14, 2015


you don't need the article for it being correct. but the intonation of the meaning changes slightly (see Mediterranean's explanation)

March 30, 2015


Thanks :)

June 11, 2015


Can someine help me here where is 'La mia' 'Il mio' 'Le mie' and 'miei' used? And where is 'mia' 'mio' 'mie' 'miei' used I am having a problem in these:(

February 9, 2016


Every single italian grammars I've looked at specify that you cannot leave out the definite article (except with close relatives in the singular). I've not come across a single instance of "you can also use the possessive without a definite article if you want to convey this special meaning such-and-such, or in the context so-and-so". Hence, I can't help thinking that there might be mistake here... Can somebody point me to a reliable source that explains under which conditions "i cani sono miei" would be correct?

July 29, 2018


I just love to say miei...

March 29, 2016


Thank you all for the explanation, I just hope I'll get the hang of it

July 24, 2017


Chi lasciò i cani??

September 6, 2017

[deactivated user]

    when to use Gli and when to use I ?

    November 29, 2017


    Gli for Lo, I for Il (and Le for La)

    May 7, 2018


    Why does "I cani sono miei" mean "the dogs are mine" but not "these are my dogs"? How do you say "These dogs are mine"?

    January 11, 2018


    These dogs are mine is translated as Questi cani sono miei

    January 11, 2018


    I wrote the dogs belong to me but it was marked as wrong.

    March 5, 2018



    June 13, 2018


    I tried to write "The bitches are mine" but it told me I was wrong, is this a joke?

    January 21, 2019


    I think you'd have to use "le cagne" to say the b-word (plural) in Italian.

    January 22, 2019


    I think it's optional, because I've got this right in similar cases and wrong in others. Would be better for such questions if Duo counted as correct and showed the other correct options, rather than arbitrarily deciding when it counts as correct.

    March 3, 2019


    I also am confused by when to use the article before the possessive.

    November 4, 2013


    Please explain grammar properly!

    December 26, 2013


    why are there mia, mio, miei ._.

    February 16, 2014


    "mia" goes with a feminine singular noun eg "Lei è mia madre". "mio" goes with a masculine singular noun eg "Lui è mio padre". "miei" goes with masculine or mixed plural eg "Loro sono i miei genitori" "mie" goes with feminine plural nouns eg "Sono le mie sorelle"

    May 22, 2014


    CMIIW, There are different possesion for uses. Mia for feminime, mio for masculine, miei for informal. Maybe someone who's more expert can explain better

    February 22, 2014


    You are correct the possessive adjectives have to agree in number (singular/plural) and gender (masculine/feminine). This page has a table of them all, plus some examples: http://italian.about.com/library/fare/blfare132a.htm

    March 14, 2014


    Mio - masculine Mia - feminine Mei - femine plural Miei - masculine plural

    I dont believe that informal-ity has any presecedence here.

    March 7, 2014


    What's wrong with: these are my dogs?

    January 5, 2015


    The translation for "these are my dogs" is "questi sono i miei cani"

    January 5, 2015


    thank you!

    January 8, 2015


    Could it also be "Sono i miei cani?"

    February 17, 2015


    intuitively (and comparing with Spanish and Portuguese) I'd reckon you could say "sono miei cani" but not "sono i miei cani". if you want to stress they are "the" dogs you would have to say "i cani sono miei"

    March 30, 2015


    Is "è" for singular and "sono" for plural?

    April 8, 2015


    Yes, "è" is third person singular, "il cane è mio" and "sono" is third person plural, "i cani sono miei"

    April 8, 2015


    If "miei" is plural, why is it wrong to say "the dogs are ours"?

    July 17, 2015


    "miei" is plural because it is defining "cani" (plural dogs) and "miei" means "mine". If you want to say "the dogs are ours" you need to use the possessive pronoun "nostri" meaning "ours": "I cani sono nostri"

    July 17, 2015


    I understand now, thanks!

    July 17, 2015


    You are very welcome :-)

    July 17, 2015


    Why is this miei and not mio?

    April 5, 2016


    "Mio" is singular and refers to one, in this case one dog, il mio cane = my dog. "Miei" is plural and refers to more than one dog, i miei cani = my dogs

    April 6, 2016


    The girlgone dogs are mine.

    July 23, 2016


    Please advise if these phrases are acceptable.


    I cani sono miei. [ The dogs are mine. ]

    I cani sono i miei. [ The dogs are mine. ]

    I cani sono i miei cani. [ The dogs are my dogs. ]


    I cavalli sono miei. [ The horses are mine. ]

    I cavalli sono i miei. [ The horses are mine. ]

    I cavalli sono i miei cavalli. [ The horses are my horses . ]


    I cani non sono miei. [ The dogs are not mine. ]

    I cani non sono i miei. [ The dogs are not mine. ]

    I cani non sono i miei cani. [ The dogs are not my dogs. ]


    I cavalli non sono miei. [ The horses are not mine. ]

    I cavalli non sono i miei. [ The horses are not mine. ]

    I cavalli non sono i miei cavalli. [ The horses are not my horses . ]


    Many thanks! Grazie!

    January 15, 2017


    Whats the difference between mie and miei?

    February 7, 2017


    "Mie" is used with feminine plural nouns, eg "Queste mele sono le mie" - "These apples are mine". "Miei" is used with masculine plural nouns, eg Quei fiori sono i miei" - "Those flowers are mine".

    February 13, 2017


    What are the different uses for mio, miei and mie

    March 30, 2017


    I am not sure when to use the article before the possessive adjective.

    April 2, 2017


    Using the article before the possessive adjective, as in the DL sentence above, is completely optional; the sentence means the same whether you use the article or not.

    April 2, 2017


    How can I know which article to use (I, Le, Gli, etc.)

    June 17, 2017



    September 30, 2015

    July 8, 2016


    All of them. All the dogs are MINE. XD

    December 5, 2016


    o my gosj

    June 3, 2015


    i will quit.

    June 3, 2015


    Thanks @ Morgan

    August 18, 2015


    It isnt that difficult. This sentence is correct. It is saying "the dogs are mine" thus the possesive term is at the end of "the dogs". If it were asking to translate "those dogs are mine" you would write/type "sono I miei cani" therefore the possesive term is intermingling with the subject.

    March 7, 2014
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