Gerundio vs.
English -ing Form

  • When the English -ing form is used as a noun, in Italian we generally use an infinitive form.
  • The Italian past participle is sometimes used where the -ing form is used in English:
essere disteso → to be lying
essere seduto → to be sitting
essere appoggiato → to be leaning

  • In English the –ing form can follow other verbs, but in Italian the gerund can't be used in this way. We use a preposition and the infinitive form instead.

  • In English you use the -ing form after prepositions and adverbs. In Italian we don't do this. In these cases we generally use an infinitive, sometimes preceded by a preposition.
  • In English the -ing form is often used as nouns, but in Italian you cannot use the gerund form like this.
  • The gerund can be used by itself to say when, why or in what circumstances something happened or would happen.
    • In English you can put an -ing word in front of a noun, for example, skating rink (pista di pattinaggio). In Italian we don't do this.