The Future Tense
The future tense is used to express an action that will take place in the future. It corresponds to “will + verb” in the English, “I will go” or “He will see.”
Future Tense of Regular Verbs
With regular verbs, the future tense is formed by adding the future tense endings to -are, -ere, and -ire verbs.
Though we can use the present tense to express an action that will take place in the future — I am going to Italy next summer — the future tense is more precise.
The Future Tense of Irregular Verbs
In the future tense, the verbs dare, stare, and fare simply drop the final -e of their infinitives and form the stems dar-, star-, and far-, respectively; the stem of essere is sar-. These stems are then combined with the regular future tense endings.
There are two other irregular constructions you should be aware of: verbs with infinitives that end in -ciare and -giare and those that end in -care and -gare. Verbs with infinitives ending in -ciare and -giare drop the i before adding the future endings to the root: tu comincerai, noi viaggeremo. Verbs with infinitives ending in -care and -gare add an h to the root for the future to preserve the hard sound of the c or g of the infinitive: io cercherò, loro pagheranno.
The following table shows some irregular verbs in the future tense.
Future Tense of Irregular Verbs
Future Tense of Irregular Verbs Ending in -
When the verb ends in -ciare or -giare, the -iare is dropped and the future ending is added. When the verb ends in -iare without the -c or -g (svegliare, for example), the i is not dropped.
L'estate prossima io andrò in Italia e vedrò i miei cugini.
Next summer I will go to Italy and I will see my cousins.
Other Irregular Verbs in the Future Tense
Can you recognize the future tense when it is spoken? Listen to each conjugation and underline the one that is in the future tense.
loro dormivano, noi dormiamo, tu dormirai
lui vuole, io vorrò, noi volevamo
noi siamo, loro saranno, io ero
lui pagherà, voi pagavate, tu paghi
loro facevano, io faccio, voi farete
Exercise 13-2: From Present to Future
Rewrite each sentence, changing the verb from the present to the future tense.
Tu impari l'italiano._________________________________________
Domani sera io sto a casa._________________________________________
Mio figlio è famoso._________________________________________
Non veniamo a casa tua._________________________________________
Balliamo tutta la sera._________________________________________