GIÀ vs ANCORA – Meaning and Use

Do you already know the difference between GIÀ and ANCORA? How? Haven’t you understood it yet? No problem! These two video-lessons will help you to learn how and when to use one and the other, once and for all! Make sure to watch them both!

How to use GIÀ and ANCORA – Part 1

In this first part, we will deal with the word GIÀ.  It can have more than one meaning:

1. First of all, it can indicate a fact or an event occurred in a previous moment, so with the meaning of  “in precedenza” (previously)


Il Presidente ha già parlato. (The President has already spoken)

Maria è già tornata dal viaggio. (Maria is already back from the trip)

As you have probably noticed when we use GIÀ with this meaning, the verb tense is always passato prossimo and GIÀ is placed between the auxiliary and the past participle.

2. It expresses surprise for something happened early (usually we find it with this meaning in interrogative or esclamative sentences).


– Oggi è il 25 dicembre! (Today is December the 25th)

– Siamo già a Natale?? Ricordo l’estate come se fosse ieri! (Is it Christmas already?? I remember summer like it was yesterday!)

– Perché ti stai fermando al distributore? (Why are you stopping at the gas station?)

– Abbiamo già finito la benzina! (We have already run out out of  gas!)

3. It indicates a long-running event or  fact (In this sense it has a bit negative connotation). Usually, the time is indicated immediately after.


Piove già da qualche ora e sembra non voler smettere. (It has been raining for some hours already and it seems it’s not going to stop)

4. It can indicate an event that should have happened in a determined moment but didn’t happen.


A quest’ora avremmo già dovuto consegnare il progetto, ma ancora dobbiamo iniziare! (We should have delivered the project already, by now, but we still have to begin!)

5. At last, it expresses resignation (sincere or ironic) for something that was previously said, so it takes the meaning of “certo“, “lo so“ (sure, I know)


– Questo esercizio è difficilissimo! Non riusciremo mai a farlo… (This exercise is very difficult! We won’t be able to do it)

– Già… (Yeah…)

After learning this little word, don’t miss the explanation of ANCORA!

Let’s see if you’ve mastered the contents of this class. Have a go at completing the exercises!

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