Italian: Past participle must agree with direct object pronouns

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By aaron

When a direct object pronoun like la, lo, li, and le comes before a verb conjugated in the past tense with avere, the past participle must agree in gender and number with the direct object pronoun.

Loro hanno comprato i giornali.
They have bought the newspapers.
Loro li hanno comprati.
They have bought them.
In the first sentence you say i giornali, but in the second version of the sentence, i giornali is replaced by a direct object pronoun. In the first sentence you say comprato because it matches with loro. But in the second sentence, since you have the direct object pronoun and it comes before a past tense verb with avere, you say comprati instead of comprato, because comprati has to match with li, which is the direct object pronoun.


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