Stare per – Very Near Future

Italian near future
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Futuro molto prossimo

What’s about to happen? You can explain what will happen in the very near future with the construction stare per + infinitive, the Italian equivalent of "to be about to do."*

To use il futuro molto prossimo, conjugate stare in the present tense according to the subject, then follow it with per and the infinitive of the action verb.

Per esempio…

L’aereo sta per atterrare.   The plane is about to land.
Sto per chiamare mio padre.   I’m about to call my dad.
Stiamo per partire per la spiaggia.   We’re about to leave for the beach.

Near Future in the Past

Stare can also be used in the imperfect to say "was/were about to do" something.

Per esempio…

L’aereo stava per atterrare.   The plane was about to land.
Stavo per chiamare mio padre.   I was about to call my dad.
Stavamo per partire per la spiaggia.   We were about to leave for the beach.

 * In English (and French and Spanish), the near future is more flexible. We can say "I’m going to leave tomorrow" (Je vais partir demain / Voy a partir mañana) but this construction does not exist in Italian (Vado a partire domani). The closest equivalent is stare per fare. Like "to be about to do," this construction can only be used when

  1. the action is imminent
       and
  2. the time/day/date is not specified

Otherwise, you need either the future tense or, in some cases, the present tense.

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Stare per - Italian near future