When would I use "c'erono" vs "ci sono state"?

I'm trying to figure out the difference in USE between c'erono and ci sono state. They both mean "there were," but I'm thinking they are each used for specific applications.

My professor is difficult to approach (she's teaching Italian 2 and reacts poorly to Italian 2 competency levels), so I'd rather ask the community to help clear that up for me.


I left out that this is for Italian.

1 Answer

  • GuFo
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Ciao Libellus,

    Ok the difference sounds like this:

    C'ERANO (and not c'erono) means THERE WERE past tense

    C'ERANO STATE means THERE HAVE BEEN participle (less used in English I think).

    There is not really a rule to use them. You can use both. They are used to specify a past tense, even if "ci sono state" is less used in Italian too. We'd rather say "ci saranno state" (there will have been) for the same meaning of "ci sono state"

    Example: C'erano 10 persone alla festa? There were 10 peoplea at the party . Quante persone c'erano alla festa ? How many people were at the party ? Ci saranno state 10 persone There will have been 10 people

    Source(s): Native Italian - Hope it helps
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