Italian Language Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for students, teachers, and linguists wanting to discuss the finer points of the Italian language. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I was talking to my Italian Professora and we were joking about my attempts to flirt with a person. However, when I told her about the line Tu non sei il sole ma fate la mia mattina (You are not the sun, but you make up my morning); she said my Italian grammar was incorrect. Before she could offer an explanation, she had to charge off to a meeting. My Italian friend does not know why its wrong, and I can't tell either. Should fate be tu fai? Is that my issue?

share|improve this question
Welcome to Italian.SE! – Charo Feb 2 at 6:23
Thanks, @Charo! As a current student learning Italian, I feel this website will be perfect for me in the long run. – Digital Veer Feb 3 at 1:47
It's a lousy line, by the way. – magma Feb 3 at 19:44
@magma Each to their own opinion! – Digital Veer Feb 3 at 19:45
@DigitalVeer ahah right! just willing to help. but if it works for you, that's fine. – magma Feb 3 at 19:47
up vote 11 down vote accepted

I was talking to my Italian Professora...

First of all I should warn you that the most used feminine form of "professore" is professor-essa; "professor-a" is not incorrect, but less usual.

As for your sentence,

Tu non sei il sole ma fate la mia mattina,

from a grammatical point of view the problem is what you've understood: you begin the sentence using tu... sei (singular), but conclude it using (voi) fate (plural), as if you're referring not to the same person but to several people or also to the same person but with a less informal tone. Unfortunately both pronouns (tu, voi) are translated by the English word "you".

Moreover, I think you're attempting a literal translation of an idiomatic sentence (or are you referring to Elvis' song?) by saying «fate(/fai) la mia mattina»: if you're referring to the action of the Sun and to the fact that the person you're talking to warms your heart and makes you happy, note that we usually say:

illumini il mio giorno


illumini il mio cielo.

share|improve this answer
Thanks, this really helped! I also like the phrase "illumini il mio giorno" over "fai mia mattina". Definitely will accept – Digital Veer Feb 2 at 5:40
@DigitalVeer You're very welcome! And thanks to you too! :) – mrnld Feb 2 at 5:43

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.