When trying to express the sentiment "not well, not well at all" I would be inclined to say "non bene, non bene a tutti", but is there an idiomatic expression that is used by native speakers, or a more correct translation?

  • 1
    Please explain your example better: are you talking about the fact that someone feels ill, or unwell? Like in "How are you feeling today?" "not well, not well at all" ?
    – AltGei
    Oct 27, 2015 at 14:32
  • 3
    The correct translation of "at all" in Italian is "per niente". "A tutti" means "to all".
    – Denis Nardin
    Oct 27, 2015 at 15:43
  • @AltGei I was hoping there was something that stood in generality, but would be interested so hear the difference between the response to "How are you feeling today?" and something like "Can you play golf?"
    – mlegge
    Oct 27, 2015 at 16:31

2 Answers 2


To the question "How are you feeling today?" / "Come stai oggi?" I would answer

"Non tanto bene...anzi, per niente bene"

"Male, proprio male"

"Male, davvero male"

To the question "Can you play golf?" "Sai giocare a golf?" I would say:

"Non troppo bene" (not quite well)

"Non molto bene" (not very well)

"Per niente bene" (not well at all)

You can combine these sentences but everyone stands by itself


"not well, not well at all" can be translated, depending on the context, as:

1) "non bene, affatto"

2) "non bene, proprio non bene"

3) "non bene, per niente"

Whatever the choiche were among 1), 2) and 3), note that "a tutti" — that you have used as translation of "at all" — is incorrect at all.

Hoping you are satisfied, please don't forget to cast an upvote.

  • Thank you, dear OP, for having cast a downvote. Please, now explain the reason why. Oct 27, 2015 at 14:22
  • 4
    I did not downvote but I have to say that your second example sounds very weird to my ears. I would rather say male, proprio male.
    – Denis Nardin
    Oct 27, 2015 at 15:44
  • I actually have not voted on your answer -- but would appreciate a description of when each is appropriate.
    – mlegge
    Oct 27, 2015 at 15:44
  • 1
    Here I am, the downvoter. Sorry, Elberich, but the three versions sound quite stilted. Would you actually utter one of them, were one to inquire about your health or situation?
    – DaG
    Oct 27, 2015 at 17:26
  • 1
    @ElberichSchneider, possibly in one of the ways listed by AltGei, or “Mica tanto bene”, or “Maluccio”, or in even more colloquial ways, I'd say.
    – DaG
    Oct 27, 2015 at 17:52

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.