3 Irregular Past Participles in Italian: FARE, PRENDERE, DIRE

3 Irregular Past Participles in Italian: FARE, PRENDERE, DIRE

We learn pretty soon that forming the past participles in Italian can be easy and intuitive. However, we forget that there are some verbs with an irregular past participle. So, the question is: how do we form these irregular past participles in Italian?


As we saw in our previous lesson about the passato prossimo, there’s a simple rule to create the participio passato (or past participle):


the verbs of the first group (ending with -ARE) form the participio passato with -ATO.


Then, the verbs of the second group (ending with -ERE) form the participio passato with -UTO.


Finally, the verbs of the third group (ending with -IRE) form the participio passato with -ITO


As you can see, this rule is easy and straightfoward. However, as we said before, we cannot use it with every verb.

When we try to use it with another category of verbs, we pretty soon realize that we have made a msitake. As a result, we get confused and we then realize that some verbs have their own special participio passato.


Indeed, there are some verbs which have, in fact, an irregular participio passato.


So, how do we learn these irregular past participles?


The key, in order to learn them, is to simply learn them by heart. After that, we will need to find any possible way to practice them. In addition to that, the more you repeat your daily practice, the better it will be for your learning.


Some of these verbs, which we’re going to see today are:


Fare (to do, to make)

Prendere (to take, to get)

Dire (to say)


So, here is how we form their participio passato:


Fare > Fatto

Prendere > Preso

Dire > Detto





Now that you’ve seen the past particples of these irregular verbs, here is how to use them.


You’re going to see some examples in the passato prossimo taken from our day-to-day life.


For each verb, you’re going to see three practicle examples. After that, you will also have an English translation to support you with your learning.



Che cosa hai fatto ieri? (What did you do yesterday?)

Oggi non ho fatto niente tutto il giorno. (Today I did nothing the whole day.)

Che cosa avete fatto?! (What have you done?!)



Ieri sera ho preso il taxi per tornare a casa. (Yesterday night, I took a taxi to go back home.)

Hai preso il regalo per Martina? (Did you get the present for Martina?)

Dove hai preso questa maglietta? (Where did you get this t-shirt?)



Cosa ti ha detto Andrea? (What did Andrea say to you?)

Laura non mi ha detto della festa di oggi. (Laura didn’t tell me about today’s party.)

Cosa ti hanno detto i tuoi? (What did your parents say to you?)




Now, it’s time to play.


Don’t forget that, seeing examples and memorizing them is not enough. So, here is a game to help you practice these irregular past participles.


In order to play, click on the numbers that you see in the crossword puzzle. You will then find a sentence to complete with a verb in the passato prossimo.


Once you think you know the answer, type the conjugated verb in the little squares. After that, play one more time, and play as much as you want.


In other words, have fun with it, because the more you play, the more you will remember.


So, when you’re ready, press play and have fun!





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Gloria Spagnoli
Gloria Spagnoli
I help beginners of Italian take their first steps, speak from day one and learn Italian at their pace and by having fun.