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If I could change the way we learn Italian in schools, one of the first things I would change is when we learn the subjunctive mood.
Typically the curriculum states that we should learn the subjunctive mood as an intermediate learner, which I think is complete hogwash considering the fact that it’s so widely used and a heavy opponent for the present indicative tense.
This means that even though you learned the present indicative tense as the main tense you would use in conversation, you have to re-learn that it’s not actually the case and the subjunctive mood must actually be used in many cases
Talk about a brain hurricane. No thank you.
So now that you’re thoroughly confused from university (or maybe on your own account), here is how you can determine whether to use the subjunctive mood or the present tense in whatever way you’re trying to express yourself.
If you’ve read this post on the present subjunctive mood, you know that you use it to express:
— A doubt
— A wish
— An uncertainty
— An emotion
— An opinion
— A fear
You use the presente indicativo when you want to express:
— A certainty
— A fact
However, there are instances where you can absolutely use the presente indicativo instead of the congiuntivo with a flourish of a phrase.
Phrases you can use to express opinions and use the presente indicativo
— Secondo me – According to me
— Forse – Maybe
You can usually make a decision on whether to use il congiuntivo or il presente indicativo based on which verb you’re using.
There are some verbs that are used to express opinions, desires, and fears and then some verbs to express things that are concrete and certain.
So which verbs call for the congiuntivo after the word “che”?
They’re usually verbs that describe any of the things above like doubt, emotions, or a wish.
Sembrare – to seem
— Mi sembra che tu non sia contento. Perché? – It seems to me that you aren’t happy. Why?
You can find many of the ones that express opinions, desires and fears in these two articles:
Some words that will most likely take the indicativo are ones that express certainty:
— È evidente che – It’s evident that…
— È chiaro che – It’s clear that…
— Essere consapevole di – to be aware of
— Avere la certezza – to have certainty
Questions? Comments? Leave it in the comments below.