Time words and time expressions are always very useful. Some of the most common ones are sempre (always), mai (never), ancora (still), già (already), and appena (just). If you need to review how to use them, you could check lesson 35.
If we want to talk about some period of time up until now, we use the following time expression: da quando + present indicative.
We use this construction when we want to link two events and one of these events is still happening.
Da quando basically means “since”. However, just so you know and understand this better, da literally means “from”, so it’s like saying “from (the moment) when”.
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Two related clauses
Let’s have a look at the following example:
Non mi telefona mai da quando abita in Spagna.
He has never called me since he’s been living in Spain.
As you can see above, the sentence is made of two clauses. Clause A is “non mi telefona mai” and clause B is “da quando abita in Spagna”.
Clause A could stay on its own, but the one starting with da quando cannot. It’s the same in English: we cannot just say “since he’s been living in Spain” and nothing else.
So, whenever you use da quando make sure you complement or finish the sentence. Otherwise, it’ll sound incomplete.
Also, the order can change and the sentence will still mean the same. So, if we take the sentence above and we invert its order, it’ll still mean the same. Have a look at it:
Da quando abita in Spagna non mi telefona mai.
Since he’s been living in Spain, he has never called me.
Practice with QuizletHere's a set of flashcards and quizzes to practice this grammar topic.
Da quando: examples
Let’s now have a look at some more examples.
Da quando ci conosciamo Mattia non mi ha mai delusa.
Since we met, Mattia has never deceived me.
Non ci vediamo mai da quando sono all’università.
We haven’t seen each other since I’ve been at university.
Da quando sono con lei non esco più.
Since I’ve been with her, I don’t go out.
Da quando vado dallo psicologo sto molto meglio.
Since I’ve been going to the psychotherapist, I feel much better.
As you can see in the examples above, in English after “since”, we don’t usually use the present tense.
Instead, we prefer to use the present perfect (e.g.: “since I’ve been…”) or the present perfect progressive (e.g.: “since I’ve been going…”).
This is because when an event started in the past but is still happening in the present, in English, we usually use those two types of verbs.