How does adding 'degli' in 2. change the meaning of 1.?

  1. Sono stato al ristorante con amici.

  2. Sono stato al ristorante con degli amici.

3 Answers 3


In my opinion

Sono stato al ristorante con amici.

stresses the fact that the people I was with were friends, as opposed to other "categories" such as family members, coworkers and so on.

On the other hand

Sono stato al ristorante con degli amici.

gives slightly less importance to the kind of people I was with and communicates two facts (I went to the restaurant and I was with friends) with no focus on a particular one.

  • This is right: It is like with delle persone, or la vedova […] magra come una acciuga, con delle mani spolpate.
    – apaderno
    Nov 6, 2013 at 12:56

"Degli" in this context means "a certain quantity of, some", so the two examples have different meanings:

  1. I went to the restaurant with friends
  2. I went to the restaurant with some friends

The change in meaning is analogous as you would have in English.

  • 2
    Indeed, but he asked about the change of meaning. In English as in Italian, both sentences mean that I went to the restaurants and I was with some friends, but they express the same concept slightly differently. Nov 6, 2013 at 0:10

''Con gli amici'' sounds much better than ''con amici.''

You can also use ''alcuni''... both ''degli'' and ''alcuni'' mean ''some'', whereas ''gli'' means ''the'' [in English wouldn't be OK, but in Italian is fine.]

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