Translated by Alanna Quintyne

In today’s article called “Tricks for using bene and buono”, I talk again about these two Italian words. In the past, I have already explained these words from the perspective of grammar. Now, I would like to give you a little advice, very helpful even if the grammar is not your cup of tea! 

So, let’s move on, and let’s start reading the following lines! :)

You can also read the Italian version here!

Bene and buono are two words that are taught very early on in Italian courses or when learning Italian is approached through the use of apps. Nevertheless, these words continue to be a thorn in the side of students when they have to use them in sentences. In fact, this is the second article which I have written about bene and buono precisely due to the reoccurrence of errors. However, I am sure that with the simple yet fundamental information which you’ll find in this article, using these two words will no longer pose a problem!

If grammar is not your strong point or if extremely in-depth and detailed explanations don’t do it for you, continue to read because you’ll find the solutions that you’ve been looking for!

Let’s recap bene and buono

Well, to take a step back and to summarize what has already been explained, the following brief set of information is what you should remember:

Bene is an adverb

and must mainly follow a verb as it describes the way in which we do the action. For example:

  • Io cucino bene. (I cook well).
  • Lui parla bene l’italiano. (He speaks Italian well).
  • Questo gruppo esordiente suona bene. (This new band sounds good).

Buono is an adjective

and being such, it must give us information about the noun. For example: 

  • La mia cucina è buona. (My cousine is good). 
  • Il suo italiano è buono. (His Italian is good). 
  • La musica di questo gruppo esordiente è buona. (This new band’s music is good).

Well… this is what I had already explained in the previous article, but if the information given here is not clear enough, I have another piece of advice that I would ask you to take with a grain of salt. 

Since some students keep making mistakes with bene and buono, I tried to find an even simpler way to explain how these two Italian terms are used. And, I have noticed to my amazement that this advice is beginning to pay off. Basically, there are two things to remember:

a. When there is the verb essere, use buono. 

b. When there are other verbs, use bene.

It  goes without saying that it is important for me that you all understand the principle behind this choice and that you know that there are cases in which the verb essere can be followed by bene (that is why I said to take this advice with a grain of salt). 

However, I realize that if it is not easy for you to understand Italian grammar, following this small piece of advice (which in some ways can be a little simplistic) will enable you to speak Italian correctly. 

ila firma

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