In this article we will talk about logical connectives, also known as logical connectors. They are conjunctions that are useful to combine sentences and periods by articulating our thoughts in a more linear way. There are many of them, but we will talk about the 15 most used, the ones that everyone should know to speak Italian!
Logical Connectors to talk and write in Italian!
Let’s start with the easy stuff, like the “E” conjunction.
1 – “E” (AND)
This conjunction has an additional function, that is, it puts two or more different things on the same plane, creating a kind of addition.
For example:”A Capodanno sono andata ad un veglione e ho nuotato in una piscina bellissima” (“On New Year’s Eve I went to a party and swam in a beautiful pool”).
2 – “O and OPPURE” (OR)
These two conjunctions have a disjunctive function, that is, they divide two or more elements, usually confronting us with a choice.
Therefore, these two conjunctions have an opposite function to that of the “E” conjunction.
Here is an example:”Mi hanno proposto di lavorare come maestro di italiano o come assistente di volo”(“I was offered to work as a teacher of Italian or as a flight attendant”).
3 – “CIOÈ, OSSIA and OVVERO” (THAT IS, OR)
These three are explanatory conjunctions, introducing an explanation of what has just been said.
For example:”L’italiano è una lingua romanza, cioè deriva dal latino” (“Italian is a Romance language, that is, it comes from Latin.”)
These 3 conjunctions are interchangeable, under any circumstances, one can be used in place of the other, but beware of “OVVERO”.
“OVVERO”, in addition to having explanatory value, can also have disjunctive value, as we have seen for “O and OPPURE”.
“I partenopei, cioè i napoletani, sono simpaticissimi” (“The Partenopei, or the Neapolitans, are very nice”)
” Di solito, passo le vacanze in Puglia, a Bari ovvero a Otranto”(“I usually spend my holidays in Puglia, in Bari or Otranto”)
4 – “INFATTI” (AS A MATTER OF FACT)
This explanatory conjunction serves to introduce an explanation, confirmation or justification to what was previously said.
Example:”Adoro la pizza, infatti la mangio quasi tutti i giorni!” (“I love pizza, as a matter of fact I eat it most days!”)
5 – “PERCHE’ AND SICCOME” (BECAUSE, SINCE, GIVEN THAT)
These two causal conjunctions introduce the cause, the reason, for which a given thing happened.
“Non sono andata al suo compleanno perchè avevo la febbre” (“I didn’t go to his birthday because I had a fever.”)
“Siccome avevo la febbre, non sono andata al suo compleanno”(“Since/Given that I had a fever, I didn’t go to his birthday.”)
Have you noticed the difference? Despite having the same meaning, the structure of the two sentences changes. In fact, when we use “PERCHE’ ” the effect precedes the cause, while when we use “SICCOME” the cause precedes the effect!
6 – “QUINDI, PERCIO’ and INSOMMA” (SO, THEREFORE, HENCE)
The closing conjunctions have consequences for what has previously been said.
Here are several examples:
“Il volo è stato cancellato, quindi non siamo partiti” (“The flight was cancelled, so we didn’t leave.”)
“I libri di grammatica costano molto e non danno grandi risultati. Tra l’altro, sono anche pesanti e ingombranti. Insomma, l’ideale sarebbe studiare online!” (“Grammar books cost a lot and don’t give great results. By the way, they are also heavy and bulky. Therefore/Hence, the ideal would be to study online!”)
7 – “QUALORA” (IF, IN CASE)
This conjunction with hypothetical value introduces a hypothesis. In fact, we could say that it has the same meaning as “SE”.
Let’s see an example:”Qualora dovessi ritardare, avvisami per messaggio” (“In case you were to be late, send me a message.”)
8 – “MENTRE” (WHILE)
You have to pay special attention to this conjunction because it can have two completely different functions.
“MENTRE” can have temporal value, expressing contemporaneity, or adverse value, that is, it creates a contrast, an opposition.
“Rocco giocava alla playstation, mentre Graziana guardava la televisione” (“Rocco was playing the playstation while Graziana was watching television”)
These two actions took place at the same time, that is, at the same time.
“Rocco amava giocare alla playstation, mentre Graziana odiava i video game” (“Rocco loved to play the playstation, while Graziana hated video games”)
It is clear that, in this second example, the two actions are contrasting one anoter, so the “MENTRE” conjunction introduces an opposition to what was said in the first.
9 – “MA” (BUT)
This conjunction, unlike “MENTRE”, has only a contrasting value.
For example: “Gli ho fatto diverse proposte, ma lui ha sempre rifiutato” (“I made him several offers, but he always refused.”)
If you want to delve into the contrasting conjunctions (ma, però, tuttavia, eppure e bensì/but, however, nevertheless, yet), we suggest that you look at the lesson we made on this topic!
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