Vocabulary

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Lesson Transcript

Intro

Hi everybody! Marika here. Welcome to Ask a Teacher, where I’ll answer some of your most common Italian questions.
The Question
The question for this lesson is: How can I correctly conjugate the adjective bello?
Explanation
Bello is a very common Italian adjective that means “beautiful” or “good.” Despite being common, it’s irregular and doesn’t follow the regular forms of adjectives.
It follows the article rules instead. Let’s see all the forms it can take.
Just like the masculine article lo, it’s bello before a masculine noun starting with z, x, ps, pn, gn, y, s+consonant. For example:
Bello zaino (“beautiful backpack”)
Bello spettacolo (“good show”)
The adjective becomes bell’, with an apostrophe, before a masculine noun starting with a vowel. For example:
Bell’uomo (“beautiful man”)
As gli is the plural form for lo and l’, with an apostrophe, similarly begli is the plural form of bello and bell’:
Begli zaini (“beautiful backpacks”)
Begli uomini (“beautiful men”)
It’s bel before all other masculine nouns, which would take the masculine article il. For example:
Bel gatto (“beautiful cat”)
Just like i is the plural form of il, similarly bei is the plural form of bel:
Bei gatti (“beautiful cats”)
It’s bella before all feminine nouns, which would take the feminine article la. For example:
Bella donna (“beautiful woman”)
Bella isola (“beautiful island”)
An exception is bell’amica (meaning “good friend” in an ironic way).
Just like le is the plural form of la, belle is the plural feminine form:
Belle donne (“beautiful women”)
Belle isole (“beautiful islands”)

Outro

The demonstrative adjective quello (“that”) follows the same rules as bello, and it rhymes!
Pretty interesting, right?
If you have any more questions, please leave a comment below!
A presto! “See you soon!”

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