depend

By | August 4, 2016
depend
Happiness doesn’t depend on how much you have to enjoy, but how much you enjoy what you have.
La felicità non dipende da quanto hai da godere, ma da quanto godi di quello che hai.
- Tom Wilson
✓ I don’t know if I can come. It depends on work.
✗ I don’t know if I can come. *Depend from/by/of* work.
Non so se riesco a venire. Dipende dal lavoro.
Depend, like dipendere in Italian, is a verb. It is most common in the expression it depends, with –s because it is a third person singular present simple verb. It takes the preposition on and not *from*, *of* or *by*.
Technically, the example contains three mistakes in the space of two words! These are:
  • leaving out the subject;
  • omitting the third person –s marker in the present simple tense;
  • using the wrong preposition!
Here are some more examples with the verb depend:
It depends on the weather.
Dipende dal tempo.
✓ The artistic merit of a film doesn't always depend on its budget.
Il valore artistico di un film non dipende sempre dal suo budget.
✓ It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it. (Upton Sinclair)
E' difficile far capire qualcosa a un uomo quando il suo stipendio dipende dal fatto che non lo capisca.
✓ Don't let your happiness depend on something you may lose. (C.S. Lewis)
Non lasciare che la tua felicità dipenda da qualcosa che potresti perdere.
Note that in spoken English, when we say it depends who/what/where/when/how etc., we sometimes omit the preposition on. For example:
✓ It depends on what time they arrive.
Dipende a che ora arrivano.
✓ Your results will depend (on) how much you practise.
I tuoi risultati dipenderanno (da) quanto ti eserciti.

Don't get confused between my personality and my attitude. My personality is who I am, my attitude depends on who you are.

Personality vs attitude


Now try the quiz below! There are FIFTEEN answers. The pass mark is 80% (12 out of 15). Click on the blue arrows to go to the next or previous question. You can check your answers immediately or when you've finished the quiz.

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