Partitive articles

Partitive articles (“some” or “any”) are used to indicate an unspecified amount or quantity.

– Cosa volete mangiare? – Del pollo e dell'insalata.

–What do you want to eat? –(Some) chicken and (some) salad.

Vorrei bere dell'acqua.

I'd like to drink some water.

These words are formed by combining di (of) with the corresponding definite article (il, la, etc.):

di + il → del

di + lo → dello

di + la → della

di + i → dei

di + gli → degli

di + le → delle

Mi serve della farina, del sale e anche dello zucchero.

I need (some) flour, (some) salt and also (some) sugar.

Just like articles (il, la, etc.), these partitives change depending on the word that follows.

della + consonante 

dell' + vocale

del + consonante

dell'+ vocale

dello + s + consonante, x, y, z, gn, ps, pn

dei + consonante

degli + vocale, s + consonante, x, y, z, gn, ps, pn

Oggi ho comprato dell'uva e delle arance al supermercato.

Today I bought (some) grapes (literally “some grape”) and (some) oranges at the supermarket.

Ho visto degli gnomi nel tuo giardino! O forse erano dei bambini?

I saw (some) gnomes in your garden! Or maybe they were (some) children…

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