Che c'è di sbagliato nel voler vivere da ricchi?

I have read somewhere that it is about apocope, where you drop the last vowel so that the phrase sounds better. But I wonder why you need to use the apocopic form "voler" in this specific instance. Is it because the two consecutive infinitives "volere vivere" are a bit too much of a mouthful?

  • 1
    Possible duplicate of italian.stackexchange.com/q/4083.
    – Charo
    Jan 4, 2018 at 8:24
  • 3
    Please, do not downvote without leaving a comment :(
    – Charo
    Jan 4, 2018 at 8:25
  • As it's explained in the linked post in a previous comment, it's not obligatory, that is, one can also say "Che c'è di sbagliato nel volere vivere da ricchi?", but the version with the apocope is perceived by some Italians as better sounding. As you have said, it's quite common to do this apocope with two consecutive infinitives.
    – Charo
    Jan 4, 2018 at 10:41

1 Answer 1


An infinitive followed by another infinitive is one of the cases in which we can do vocalic apocope, that is, we can drop the last "e" from the first infinitive. Nevertheless, as explained in the answers to this question, it's not obligatory, so, in your example, we can also say "Che c'è di sbagliato nel volere vivere da ricchi?".

The reason why this is quite common it's explained in the website of Scudit ("Scuola d'Italiano" founded by Roberto Tartaglione):

[...] si tratta di esigenze "musicali": due infiniti verbali vicini... suonano male. Ti voglio fare capire > ti voglio far capire; è bello potere parlare > è bello poter parlare; nel tuo caso è assurdo volere avere ragione > nel tuo caso è assurdo voler avere ragione. E così via.

That is, it's done to preserve the "musicality" of the language, because two consecutive infinitives are perceived as something "bad sounding".

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