The Gerund

The gerund is used to talk about:

  1. something happening now or at a certain time in the past
  2. something which happened in the past at the same time as another action

It is formed from the root of the present simple

ando or –endo, depending on the conjugation

It can have two tenses:



  • Mangiando una mela mi cadde un dente. (Eating an apple, a tooth fell out.)
  • Osservando il cielo, vidi una stella cadente. (Looking at the sky, a shooting star fell.)
  • Sbagliando si impara. (Making mistakes, you learn.)
  • Studiando si capiscono molte cose. (Studying, you understand a lot of things.)
Past (present gerund + past participle)


  • Avendo dormito tutta la notte, il mattino seguente Nadia si sentiva riposata. (Having slept all night, Nadia felt refreshed the next morning.)
  • Avendo avuto poco tempo per studiare, Fabio non era pronto per l’interrogazione. (Having had little time to study, Fabio wasn’t ready for the test.)
  • Essendo stato già tre volte a Barcellona, l’anno prossimo andrò a Madrid. (Having already been to Barcelona three times, I’m going to Madrid next year.)
  • Avendo trascorso tanto tempo in Inghilterra, Valeria conosceva bene l’inglese. (Having spent a long time in England, she had a good knowledge of English.)


The gerund forms of the verbs mangiare, credere and partire.

Mangiare (to eat)

Credere (to believe)

Partire (to leave)

Gerundio Presente




Gerundio Passato
avendo mangiato
avendo creduto
essendo partito

The gerund forms of the verbs essere and avere.

Essere (to be)

Avere (to have)

Gerundio Presente



Gerundio Passato
essendo stato
avendo avuto