Sentence Planning

One of the transitions English speakers have to make in Romance languages, and I have found particularly in Italian, is that the object of the sentence that we so often put at the end ends up at the beginning of sentences.  For example, in Italian, when translating the phrase "I can show it to you", the "to you" and "it" end up as the first two syllables ahead of everything else.

I was working on this just yesterday in my Italian lesson so I got a laugh out of XKCD

You absolute-fucking-... shit.


  1. Another_Brian:

    Think of it like this: Like Yoda it makes you sound.

  2. slocum:

    The 'helping verb' + infinitive is your friend. 'Lo faccio' is backwards, but 'Vado a farlo' is easy. And in your example, why not 'Posso mostrartelo' (which has the same order as 'I can show you it')? That's one of the things the Michel Thomas language courses are really good at -- shortcuts and 'hacks' to make it easy for English speakers to be functional pretty quickly.