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"Vorrei che tu venissi alle nove."

Translation:I would like you to come at nine.

July 20, 2013



The English version "I would like that you came at nine" might make it a little apparant clear how "venissi" fits in here as the imperfect.?


This is some weird time loop of a sentence, even in English.

"I would like (present) that you (in the future) had come (past)." F....


Perhaps the nearest thing in English, also using the subjunctive, would be "I would like it if you were to come at nine". Note that the "were to come" is getting close to "venissi". Although the English does not exactly have the past continuous (imperfect) construction about it, it is still very close, and definitely not in the future or pluperfect.


Much better, I think.

I don't know if the problem is with the translation or the Italian original. Translation here calls for some greater latitude, I think.

Also, I don't think this kind of issue can be easily resolved, if there is indeed nothing wrong with the Italian. It just takes getting used to, perhaps.


It's more like: I would like it if you were to come at nine...


Agreed, why not present subjunctive? Does the conditional 'vorrei' mean it has to be in the imperfect ?


If the two verbs are contemporaneous you would use the present subjunctive. You use a past subjunctive to express the venire has already happened previous to the wishing


I am surprised that "venissi" translates as "to come". Where is the imperfect in this translation?


A more literal translation would be "I'd like you to have come at nine", i.e. the speaker is referring to a point in time after the coming. Am i right?


in italian there's an overabundance of verb tenses, and sometimes the congiuntivo presente and congiuntivo imperfetto are used interchangeably. This practice is so widespread that is commonly accepted, but below you'll find the grammatically accurate explanation. (EDITED: grazie DaGot66)

Keep in mind that this is a special case translation for English, because the verb /to want/ calls for an infinitive!

Here are two phrases which hold the same meaning and are translated the same way. 1 uses the presente and 2 the imperfetto 1) Voglio che tu venga [qui] alle 9. (I'd like you to come [here] at 9: this expresses a desire for an action yet to happen). 2) Vorrei che tu venissi [qui] alle 9. (I'd like you to come at 9: this still expresses a desire for an action in the future, even if it uses the imperfect (the conditional "vorrei" calls for the congiuntivo imperfetto). How do you tell? Well because of "Vorrei", which is present tense. How would you wish for something that has already happened?)

Anyway, even when used correctly, the imperfetto stills translates to an infinitive English verb IN THIS CASE! While on the other hand Trapassato translate to a "past infinitive (?)". Consider this: 3) Imperfetto: Volevo che tu venissi qui alle nove. (I wanted you to come here at nine) 4) Trapassato: Avrei voluto che tu fossi venuto qui alle nove. (I would have liked you to have come here at nine)

Congiuntivo Passato does not apply to the special case of /to want to/, because you cannot want now for a thing in the past to have happened, it already did.


This instead is the how you normally translate a congiuntivo

presente - simple present (non credo che lo sappia = I don't believe she knows); or present continuous (penso che parta oggi = I think she's leaving today); or an infinitive in special cases like /to want to/ (see above)

imperfetto - simple past (non credo che lo sapesse= I don't believe she knew); or past continuous (pensava che partisse oggi = he thought she was leaving today); or an infinitive in special cases;

passato - present perfect (non credo lo abbia saputo = I don't believe she has heard) (but simple past may be acceptable too?)

trapassato - past perfect (non credevo lo avesse saputo = I didn't believe she had known); or past infinitive in special cases


I truly appreciate your explanations! Ma adesso la mia testa è piena!


"How can you wish for something that already happened?" We do it all the time in English, expressing a possibly different outcome: "I wish you had come at nine." "I wanted them to have known about the traffic before they started." Such expressions are usually expressing regret, or possibly nostalgia? But I have no idea what this would mean in Italian...


I think that this is referring to something that is going to happen in the future isn't it? The "vorrei" is present conditional tense (I would like) used when expressing what you would like to happen in the future. Perhaps the nearest thing in English to this sentence, also using the subjunctive, would be "I would like it if you were to come at nine". Here is a link to some Reverso context for this phrase all of which indicate a present wish for someone to do something in the future: http://context.reverso.net/traduction/italien-anglais/Vorrei+che+tu+venissi+alle+nove


right. "I wish you had come at nine." translates in italian to "avrei voluto che (tu) fossi venuto alle 9" or better "avrei voluto che fossi stato qui alle 9". So the action you perform "to wish" is also in the past, because that's what you wanted and have been wanting since. You used the past tense yourself in the example "I wanted them to have known about the traffic before they started.".


Vorrei che tu venga è sbagliato. Vorrei che tu venissi è corretto.


Fantastic explanation. Thank you.


this is absurd. nine o'clock marked incorrect!


And me. Disappointing.


at nine o'clock = accepted Dec 2019.


Are you saying that the subjunctive imperfect is not a past tense?


Thank you, it has taken me a while to grasp that the imperfect subjunctive following a conditional does not have to mean a past tense


Thanks. I need to understand this. The Webster's verb book looks good.


Why would I use venissi here, instead of venga? What is the difference between "Vorrei che tu venga alle nove" and "Vorrei che tu venissi alle nove"?


If you have the conditional you have to use imperfect subjunctive. You can say "Voglio che tu venga alle nove", or "Vorrei che tu venissi alle nove"


"If you have the conditional you have to use imperfect subjunctive."

Everything I needed. Thanks.


is this real? i mean, did it happen or just only a hope?


I am beginning to think that in my dash to colour all the medals on my tree gold, this tense is a tense too far for me :(


I know how you feel - have a sympathetic lingot!


What is the real world application of this phrase? I am really not sure about this.

Is it a polite way to ask someone to arrive at nine? Or is it more that someone arrived at eight and I want to express she/he had better come at nine?


Myselfandi,its your first suggestion


I'm confused at which ending to use for he/she/it. Esse or essi?


There is no way to adjust in English for this:

(i would want/ that / you / came / at nine)

(Present tense hope,wish / that / past tense action).

I suspect it is pretty weird in Italian as well.... Oh, DUO.... How you make us suffer.


why is the verb piacere never used for to like?


you could use it (mi piacerebbe che tu venissi alle 9), it's a synonym. In my opinion it sounds more like a polite request and less like an imperative request.


I don't know if this means AM or PM, I had heard that Italians use a 24 hour clock but a lot of duolingo examples are ambiguous


Literally: "I would like that you arrived at nine" but English speakers don't say it like that


no but you could say " I would liked you to have arrived at nine" but it was apparently wrong.


No that is grammatically wrong. In Italian the present tense requires the imperfect subjunctive. But is not referring to the past so that is wrong. In any case, were this sentence in the past you would need to say "I would have liked you to have arrived by 9", but we arent talking past here


The use of the imperfect subjunctive in spoken language is another reminder to French speakers learning Italian that they cannot coast along, simply plugging in equivalent forms. In French, one can say either "je veux que tu viennes" or "je voudrais que tu viennes," with the present subjunctive used in both cases. If one were to say "je voudrais que tu vinsses," there would be titters of amusement, even though the sentence is, in fact, grammatical..


I still don't understand why "venissi" can mean come?


It is the imperfect subjunctive of venire


I'm wondering if the conditional in Italian doesn't take a particular subjunctive ...? It's peculiar to toss that into this exercise.


It's the imperfect subjunctive. You might read my note above from three months ago...I don't understand why you think it's "peculiar" to include it in this exercise. This is common usage. In German, one could say simply: "Ich möchte, dass du um neun kommst." But one could also say "Ich hätte es gerne, wenn du um neun kämest." Italian speakers don't seem to be conscious of using the full range of the subjunctive. When a friend and I are speaking (in German), we sometimes use the past subjunctive and then make an ironic comment about it.


Yes of course, and I know it! By mistake I opened the imperfect subjunctive instead of the perfect I was reviewing and got a little discombobulated..... In any case your examples from the German were nice to see. It's interesting to compare the differences in usage.


Oh, good! I didn't wish to appear obnoxious! In German, as you've learned, contrary-to-fact statements (if I had known that, I would have...) in both clauses. In Italian, the imperfect subjunctive is followed by the past perfect. In French, it's past perfective (indicative) + conditional perfect. (Si je n'avais perdu mon livre, j'aurais pu me préparer pour l'examen 'If I had not lost my book, I would have been able to prepare for the exam.') In German, it's the subjunctive in both clauses. So German speakers have to learn to switch gears!


Vorrei (present conditional) che tu venga (present subjunctive) alle nove. Volevo (imperfect) che tu venissi (imprefect subjuctive) alle nove.

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