Uncountable nouns

In Italian, uncountable nouns, like acqua (water), amore (love) or calore (heat), sometimes take a definite article (equivalent to “the”) and sometimes don't, depending on the context.

Ciro ascolta musica. 

Ciro listens to music.

Adoro la musica elettronica.

I love electronic music.

We generally use the definite article Articoli determinativi when:

  • Referring to something specific and previously identified:

Il burro è in frigo.

The butter is in the fridge.

  • Making a generalization:

L’olio d’oliva fa molto bene alla salute.

Olive oil is very good for your health.

The definite article is not used in the following cases:

  • When there is no specific object or quantity:

La pasta è insipida, dovevi aggiungerci sale.

The pasta is bland, you need to add salt.

  • After words that express an indefinite quantity, like un po’ (a bit), molto (a lot), abbastanza (enough), etc.

C’è poca gente alla festa.

There are not many people at the party.

Note: uncountable nouns are more frequently used with partitive articles (equivalent to “some”) than definite articles in Italian.

Mi passi del burro?

Will you pass me some butter?

Still facing difficulties with 'Uncountable nouns'? Enhance your grammar and learn Italian through our online Italian lessons.
Start with a free test and improve today!

What our users say:



I enjoy doing my online Italian lessons. Only ten minutes daily are enough...Thank you!



I love your innovative method which allows me to learn a new language and have fun at the same time!



Your method is unique! Your courses have helped me to progress and gain confidence during my travels.



Gymglish has allowed me to improve my Italian. A daily routine I wouldn't miss for anything in the world!

More testimonials.

Improve your Italian further and test Saga Baldoria, online Italian course.