Indirect Object Pronouns

While direct object pronouns answer the question what? or whom? Indirect object pronouns answer the question to whom? or for whom? Also, they're the same as the Direct Object Pronouns except for the pronouns in the Third Person (i.e. to him; to her; to them).

Singolare Singular Plurale Plural
mi (to/for) me   ci (to/for) us
ti (to/for) you (informal)   vi (to/for) you (informal)
gli (to/for) him, it   loro (to/for) them (m. & f.)
le (to/for) her, it      
Le (to/for) you (formal f. & m.)   Loro (to/for) you (formal f. & m.)

The direct object is governed directly by the verb, for example, in the following statement: Romeo loved her.

The Indirect Object in an English sentence often stands where you would expect the direct object but common sense will tell you that the direct object is later in the sentence, e.g.: Romeo bought her a bunch of flowers.

The direct object — i.e. the thing that Romeo bought is “a bunch of flowers”; Romeo didn't buy “her” as if she were a slave. So the pronoun her in the sentence actually means "for her" and is the Indirect Object.


  • Qulacuno mi ha mandato una cartolina dalla Spagna
       Someone (has) sent me a postcard from Spain.
  • Il professore le ha spiegato il problema
       The teacher (has) explained the problem to her.
  • Gli hai detto di comprare un regalo per sua madre?
       Did you tell him/them to buy a present for (his/their) mother.
  • Voglio telefonargli
       I want to phone him.
  • Il signor Brambilla ci ha insegnato l'italiano
       Mr Brambilla taught us Italian.
  • Cosa gli dici?
       What are you saying to him/to them?
  • Lucia,tuo padre vuole parlarti!
       Lucia, your father wants to speak to you!
  • Non gli ho mai chiesto di aiutarmi
       I (have) never asked him to help me.
  • Non oserei consigliarti
       I would not dare to advise you
  • Le ho regalato un paio di orecchini
       I gave her a present of a pair of earrings.