Simple Italian Words for the Beginner

Learning a few Italian words for everyday items is a great way to start picking up the language. Even if you're taking a course online or in a classroom, you should make an effort to expand your vocabulary by learning some everyday words and phrases.

How We Learn Language
Think back to how you learned your first language. You didn't sit down in a classroom and have verb tenses and grammar drilled into your head. You learned by hearing, picking up words that were essential for communication. This same method of language learning works at any age.

To truly learn a new language, you need to start thinking in that language, rather than trying to translate in your head. One of the best ways to build your vocabulary is to learn the words for things you use and see every day. Start thinking of these things in their Italian names, and you'll find your vocabulary and ability to communicate growing quickly.

Get a Handle on Pronunciation
Simply learning the words won't help you to be understood when you try to speak Italian. To master that, you need to master correct pronunciation.

Most classroom courses will give you plenty of opportunities to practice speaking Italian, and a good teacher will help you correct mistakes in pronunciation. Italian can be a little tricky for English speakers to learn, because of the way the letter "r" gets rolled and the way syllables are emphasized. If you're considering an online or home study Italian course, make sure it includes audio pronunciations that you can play back again and again, so that you're sure your pronunciation is accurate.

Everyday Italian for Beginners
Here are some Italian phrases to get you started speaking the language:

  • Yes: Sì
  • No: Nno
  • Hello: Ciao (informal), or salve (formal, for meeting people)
  • What is your name? Quale è il suo nome?
  • My name is… Mi chiamo ...
  • Where are you from? Di dove è?
  • I'm from the US: Sono Statunitense.
  • Nice to meet you! E un piacere conoscerla.
  • Good bye : Aarrivederci.
  • Thank you: Grazie.
  • How are you? Come sta?
  • I am fine: Sto bene.
  • Please: Per favore
  • I don't know: Lo non lo so.
  • Excuse me: Mi scusi.
  • Thank you very much: Mille grazie.
  • Good morning: Buongiurno
  • Good evening: Buonasera
  • Where is…? Dove…?
  • How much? Quanto?
  • Of course Ovviamente
  • With pleasure: Con piacere
  • Do you speak English? Parla inglese?
  • Where is the bathroom? Dov'è la toeletta?
  • What's new? Che c'è di nuovo?
  • Can you help me? Potrebbe aiutarmi?
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