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Learning Article : How Do You Say Different Phrases In Italian?

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How Do You Say Different Phrases In Italian?

Italians are very colorful people and their language reflects this. They have a variety of expressions to indicate life situations, moods, actions, etc. We can call these “ways to say”.

Jan 26, 2015 12:00 AM
Comments · 8
"Vai ancora per rane" non l'ho mai sentito. Dove si usa?
July 12, 2016

Thank you Gaia for your article. These expressions are similar in spanish:


* Non ci vediamo da un secolo!: ¡No nos vemos hace un siglo!

* Il mio matrimonio è andato in fumo: Mi matrimonio se esfumó.

* Il mio conto è in rosso: Mis cuentas están en rojo.

* Spicchiamo il volo: Emprendamos el vuelo.


* Mi sento con la corda al collo: Estoy con la soga al cuello


I have a question about "het u". Can you explain the meaning of that?


* I miei: In het u it means ‘my parents’.

* Het u abbia la faccia tosta: You have to demonstrate your nature and who you really are with courage.


November 23, 2015

si insomma e` una lignua incredibile 

November 19, 2015
Nice article, Gaia...earlier comments have caught the typo or two... "way to say" is one way to say it, but the English phrases you may want for English speakers are "expressions," "idioms" or "figures of speech." E.D. Hirsch wrote a now famous book in 1987 called Cultural Literacy in which he explored the educational idea of students learning about their cultural heritage, including figures of speech which were non-literal, but part of the language and culture. He indicated that language proficiency beyond about a nine year old level required a knowledge of common figures of speech. Some of the expressions you are describing are probably fairly new, and some older. Some, such as the one about a noose around someone's neck, are easier to figure out than others. An article from 2005 that I saw said that better nine year old readers had an easier time figuring out the meaning of idioms. Which makes sense and indicates what most language teachers and learners would say...that you have to do a lot of learning of vocabulary and a lot or listening and reading to really be fluent...that is, to progress beyond the nine year old level so that you can interpret non-literal speech, which, as you correctly point out, is everywhere, especially in Italy! Such a poetic and expressive language! However, based on my two recent trips to Italy, I can say the Italians seemed to slow down and instinctively revert to more literal speech when talking with me, so that I understood pretty well. But, I'll continue to work on this idioms...
November 13, 2019
Grazie mille !
November 25, 2017
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Language Skills
English, French, Italian, Spanish
Learning Language
English, French, Spanish