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8
votes
3answers
2k views

Difference between "infatti" and "in effetti"

The Italian-English dictionaries (Collins, for example) translate both infatti and in effetti as "in fact; as a matter of fact; indeed." The Italians insist, however, that these two words are not ...
6
votes
1answer
516 views

Capitalization of the first word after a colon

In American English the following sentence would be correctly written. It is true: She wanted me to say she was with me when her husband was killed. The first word after the colon is written ...
12
votes
3answers
4k views

Meaning of "avere la botte piena, la moglie ubriaca e l'uva sulla vigna"

Can anyone explain what avere la botte piena, la moglie ubriaca e l'uva sulla vigna means? Also, are there regional variations of that proverb? If so, what are they?
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Should formal pronouns be capitalized?

I often see sentences like nel ringraziarla, le porgo i miei più cordiali saluti capitalized as follows nel ringraziarLa, Le porgo i miei più cordiali saluti Some people claim the latter to be ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Using the Simple Future to express a possibility

Can I use the future tense to express a possibility, or predict the future, rather than saying something I will surely do? For example, if I say andrò a casa di mio cugino (literally, "I will go to ...
4
votes
1answer
123 views

Irrealis conditional versus possibility

In English, the following sentences have a different meaning. If I were rich, I would live on Long Island. If I am late, it is because the bus is late. While the first sentence is using the ...
11
votes
5answers
1k views

"due euro" vs. "due euri"

I often hear people saying "due euro", even if "due euri" should be used. Can anyone explain which one is correct, maybe adding a comment in reference to the differences in regional usage?
7
votes
4answers
223 views

Does "alquanto" express a greater quantity than "parecchio"?

Si tratta di oggetti alquanto strani. Si tratta di oggetti parecchio strani. Does alquanto refer to a less, equal or greater quantity in comparison to parecchio? Are the objects in the first ...
5
votes
3answers
6k views

Difference between "scordare" and "dimenticare"

When do you suggest to use "dimenticare" and when "scordare"? Is "dimenticare" only for reasonings or also valid for people? E.g. Avevo dimenticato il tuo viso Avevo ...
8
votes
2answers
165 views

When is it appropriate to move "sono" and other verbs to the end?

I've noticed in some Italian TV shows that, especially when the characters announce themselves, they don't say: io sono [Title] [Name] but rather [Title] [Name] sono I've seen this kind of ...
12
votes
3answers
26k views

Meaning of "magari"

My dictionary translates 'magari' as 'maybe'. However, I know that it can be used as interjection to mean something like "I wish!". My question is, when it's used in a sentence like this: Magari ci ...
11
votes
1answer
264 views

Pluralization of Latin words

Is the pluralization of Latin words accepted or even correct, unlike the pluralization of those coming from other languages? For example, "sono stato in due bars" would sound odd in Italian, but it's ...
7
votes
2answers
409 views

Is 'Dà questa' correct, or should it be 'Da' questa'?

Giulietta: «Quale devo dare?» a) Romeo: «Dà questa». b) Romeo: «Da' questa». Which one is grammatical, a) or b)? As far as I can tell in "Da' questa" "Da'" is different from "...
13
votes
4answers
1k views

Should one prefer «…», “…” or ‘…’?

Should one prefer «…», “…” or ‘…’? I.e., suppose one has to write reported speech, which one one should choice or prefer, 1., 2. or 3.? Qualcuno disse «Eppur si muove!» ...
4
votes
2answers
401 views

'mi dà due etti di mortadella' vs. 'mi dai due etti di mortadella'

I'm unsure when I should say 'mi dà due etti di mortadella' or 'mi dai due etti di mortadella' . Can anyone explain what the difference between using 'dà' and using 'dai' is?
12
votes
1answer
324 views

Plural of compound names

In Italian, like in many other languages, many words are obtained by putting two other words toghether (noun, adjectives, verbs). For example, "capostazione" (stationmaster) is the person who is "the ...
6
votes
2answers
750 views

'invece di' vs. 'invece che' vs. 'piuttosto di' vs. 'piuttosto che'

Quoted from 'Pinocchio' by Collodi: Fatto sta che i tre torsoli, invece di essere gettati fuori dalla finestra, vennero posati sull'angolo della tavola in ... Please, explain why Collodi uses ...
9
votes
1answer
118 views

Punctuation inside quotes

In American English, the following sentences correctly use the punctuation. She told me "Don't talk to me like that!" She told me "I love you." When I hear "she is coming," I run in the ...
10
votes
2answers
251 views

"Accordo" versus "intesa"

Are accordo and intesa perfect synonyms, or are there cases where one is used instead of the other one? For example, in the following sentences, could I replace accordo with intesa? Abbiamo firmato ...
25
votes
4answers
4k views

Past participle and changing endings with auxiliary verb "avere"

I have read many times that the endings of the past participle doesn't change when used in conjunction with the auxiliary verb "avere". However I am increasingly noticing that is is not the case. For ...
9
votes
3answers
390 views

Opinions and subjunctive

Sometimes I hear people say Penso che è in ritardo. and Penso che sia in ritardo. as well. I know I should use the subjunctive after verbs that state an opinion, my grammar book says so, but ...
13
votes
1answer
207 views

What is the difference between «utènsile» and «utensìle»?

What is the difference between utènsile and utensìle? What is their proper usage?
12
votes
3answers
8k views

È più corretto "vabbè" o "vabbé"?

Posto che se non erro la grafia corretta sarebbe va be', in caso per qualche motivo lo si debba scrivere in questa forma gergale, l'accento andrebbe grave (vabbè) o acuto (vabbé)?
14
votes
2answers
8k views

'Camera' vs 'Stanza'

I read both stanza and camera being used to translate a room. Is it there a difference between them? Could you give an example of a context where they might be applied?
3
votes
3answers
569 views

"D'accordo" or "daccordo": How should I spell it? [closed]

Which one is the correct way to spell it? Io sono daccordo or Io sono d'accordo (with the apostrophe)
27
votes
2answers
3k views

When can 'ci' be used to mean 'it'

I know that 'ci' can mean 'us' and 'there', but it appears it can also mean 'it'. For example: ci penso su - I'll think about it I've heard that it means kind of "it, in general" but I find the ...
9
votes
3answers
4k views

Rule to capitalize a title?

A common way to format titles (of movies, songs, publications,...) in English is to capitalize the starting letter of every word (for example: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy). This practice ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Difference between "con degli amici" and "con amici"

How does adding 'degli' in 2. change the meaning of 1.? Sono stato al ristorante con amici. Sono stato al ristorante con degli amici.
3
votes
2answers
154 views

"l'FBI" vs "lo FBI"

Which one is correct, 1. or 2.? 'l'FBI' 'lo FBI'
7
votes
3answers
1k views

'apparire' vs. 'sembrare'

What is the difference in meaning between 'apparire' and 'sembrare'? Questo fenomeno appare davvero inquietante. Questo fenomeno sembra davvero inquietante. Please, explain in reference to the ...
14
votes
2answers
2k views

Are there rules for the positioning of clitic pronouns?

Are there rules for the positioning of clitic pronouns? Is there a preference between “poterlo dire” and “poter dirlo”, apart from how it sounds within a given sentence?
9
votes
1answer
259 views

'aver sceso le scale' versus 'essere sceso dalle scale'

What's the difference between credo di aver sceso le scale and credo di essere sceso dalle scale?
10
votes
3answers
315 views

Is it correct to say "il lago di Loch Ness"?

I often hear people referring to Loch Ness, as il lago di Loch Ness. However Loch is the Scottish for Lago, so it appears to be redundant. Consider the two sentences Si racconta che un mostro ...
21
votes
5answers
1k views

How do English words change when plural in Italian?

When an English word is used as a singular term in Italian, it is normal to use the English singular form, for example: un film un computer un marine spaziale un cowboy When the words are used as ...
19
votes
1answer
741 views

Tanto va la gatta al lardo

I am interested to know what is the origin of the famous proverb: Tanto va la gatta al lardo, che ci lascia lo zampino I realize the figurative meaning (same as "curiosity killed the cat"), but is ...
30
votes
4answers
1k views

What are the rules for using an article with the name of a football team?

What is the rule for using articles with the soccer team names? Why do you say la Inter (l'Inter), la Juventus, la Lazio, la Roma, but also il Milan, il Bologna, il Genoa, il Manchester United, and ...

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