Italian Language/translations

Advertisement


Question
Dear Maria,

Would you please tell me if I have translated the following sentences correctly:

[1]  Era primavera, ma splendeva un sole estivo.
It was spring, but a summer sun was shining.

[2]  L’impianto solare era in funzione.
The solar heating system was in operation.

[3]  Il collegamento elettrico era stato fatto.
The electric connection had been made.

I am especially wondering if I was correct to have translated - “impianto solare” as “solar heating system”.   Can you please tell me if this is correct or not.

Can you also please tell me how to classify - “era stato fatto”.  I think the English translation - “had been made” would be classified as the past perfect in the passive voice.  I understand that “era stato” is the “trapassato prossimo”  of “essere” and that “fatto” is the  past participle of “fare”, but I am unsure how to classify -  “era stato fatto”.  Would you please tell me how to classify “era stato fatto”.

Thank you very much for all of your great help.

Sincerely,

Rich

Answer
Dear Rich,

all your translations are correct, including  “solar heating system” for “impianto solare”.   

As for how to classify  the  verb “era stato fatto”, in Italian grammar  it is the “trapassato prossimo passivo” of the verb “fare”, i.e. the past perfect of the verb “fare”  in the passive voice.

Please note that the “trapassato prossimo attivo” of the verb “fare” is “Aveva fatto” in the 3rd person singular, whereas the  “trapassato prossimo passivo”  of  the verb “fare” in the 3rd person singular is just  “Era stato fatto”.

In short, it is true that “era stato” is the “trapassato prossimo”  of “essere” and that “fatto” is the  past participle of “fare”, as you say, but  “era stato” + “fatto” becomes the “trapassato prossimo passivo”  of  the verb “fare”, because in Italian the passive form of a verb  is made up of the  auxiliary verb “essere” with the past participle of that verb as in e.g. “Il pasto era stato servito” (Lunch had been served) where “era stato servito” is the “trapassato prossimo passivo” of the verb “servire”.

Hope this is clear enough.

Have a nice afternoon,

Maria

Italian Language

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Maria

Expertise

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

Experience

Over 25 years teaching experience.

Education/Credentials
I received my Ph.D.in Classics (summa cum laude) from Genova University (Italy).

This expert accepts donations:

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.