Italian Language/use of infinitive


Dear Maria,  

Would you please help me with the use of the infinitive “organizzare” in the following sentence:

Il contesto della conversazione è che Gabriella e Piero sono a Torino e stanno guardando una mappa dell’Italia nell’intento di organizzare un viaggio.
(The context of the conversation is that Gabriella and Piero are in Turin and are looking at a map of Italy with the intention of organizing a trip)

I just wanted to make sure that I am correct in thinking that “organizzare” is an example of the present infinitive being used as an indirect object.

I am asking because in the past I thought that Italian infinitives could only be used as either subjects or direct objects.    But, in this sentence “organizzare” is following the preposition “di” which makes me think “organizzare” is an “indirect” object.  

Also, would you please verify for me that in this sentence the Italian present infinitive - “organizzare”  is equivalent to the English Gerund “organizing”.

Thank you.



Dear Rich,

firstly in the  sentence that you mention the Italian present infinitive “organizzare”  is just equivalent to the English Gerund “organizing”, since each language has its peculiarities and so what in Italian is an Infinitive depending on  the expression “nell’intento di” becomes a Gerund in English.

With regard to  “organizzare” which in this phrase is preceded by the preposition “di”, it can be considered  an example of the present infinitive being used as an indirect object.

I have to tell you, in fact,that in Italian we can use the infinitive as an indirect object, according to the context where it is placed.

For example: “Fui preso dal desiderio di partire immediatamente”, “Si spaventò molto nel vederti “, “Al momento di salutarti, si mise a piangere”, etc.

As you can se, it is not true that  Italian infinitives can only be used as either subjects or direct objects as in e.g. “Leggere mi piace molto” (subject) or “Amo molto leggere”(direct object).

Hope this can be helpful to you.
All the best,

Italian Language

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Italian is my mother tongue and I'll be glad to answer any questions concerning Italian Language.


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I received my Classics (summa cum laude) from Genova University (Italy).

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