Translated by Alanna Quintyne
In today’s article called “Come Si Usa Porre”, I’ll tell you some of the Italian verbs that can be replaced by Porre. Porre can make you speak in a way a bit more refined, and if this is your goal, I recommend you to read the following lines and to try to create sentences to practice and to feel confident while you use this word! :)
Do you guys know the verb porre or how to use it? Well, it goes without saying that porre is a very peculiar word since it is often grouped with the verb mettere. Actually, the notion that porre is simply a synonym of mettere is a bit too simplistic of an explanation, as mettere is used in a broader and general way, while the way in which porre is used is much more specific, even though it can be used in various contexts and situations.
Let’s try to go a little more in depth with this explanation by providing you with some examples as always:
1. Porre meaning Posizionare (to Place)
You all know that posizionare means to put something in a given place in a certain position. Often, you might hear Italians use porre instead, but keeping the meaning unchanged! E.g.
- Potresti porre quel libro accanto al mappamondo?
- Could you place that book next to the globe?
- E ora poniamo con cura i fiori tra i capelli.
- And now we carefully place the flowers in our hair.
2. Porre Meaning Fare (to do, to make)
If you usually watch movies or read in Italian, you will certainly have noticed that in some situations porre is used instead of fare, especially in the following situations :
- When asking someone to pay attention:
– Signori, vi prego di porre attenzione a quest’ultima opera che sta per essere battuta all’asta!
– Gentlemen, please pay attention to this latest work that is about to be auctioned!
- When you have to ask someone something:
– Posso porti una domanda? Ho una curiosità che deve essere soddisfatta!
– May I ask you a question? I have a curiosity that needs to be satisfied!
Using fare or porre in the cases examined above leads to the constructions of complete sentences with meanings that are exactly the same. The only thing I would like to point out is that fare is a verb that is used practically all the time in Italian (it’s no coincidence that I’ve already talked about this in the article called 30 Expressions with the Verb Fare), especially in colloquial situations. Choosing to use porre instead will make our way of speaking seem a little more refined, which never hurts, but without being pretentious.
3. Porre as Supporre (to Suppose)
The last use of porre which I would like you all to pay attention to is that of porre as in to suppose or to hypothesize. Let’s take a look at some sentences:
- Poniamo che la tua idea venga approvata… Come intendi procedure?
- Let’s suppose that your idea gets approved… How do you plan to proceed?
- Poniamo il caso che quella persona non sia chi dice di essere. Cosa faresti?
- Let’s suppose that person is not who they say they are. What would you do?
The use of the phrase “Poniamo il caso che…” (let’s suppose that…) is really widespread in Italian, so if your goal is to speak as much as possible like Italians, then I suggest you memorize it.
Porre in Italian is a very common verb, but it is quite difficult to explain its use because, as we have seen, depending on the context and the situation it is used in a very specific way. Take into consideration that it can be used as a substitute for many other verbs, not only the ones mentioned in this article, but I think that the explanation provided in this article can be the basis from which you start to understand the use of porre.
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