How do You Say “I Miss You” in Italian?

Key Takeaways

Unlock the secret to expressing longing in Italian with this insightful guide! Learn the singular phrase for “I miss you” and discover the nuances of addressing individuals and groups with the right touch of Italian flair. 🇮🇹❤️

  • Understanding Verb Structure: Discover how the syntactic structure of mancare differs from English, with the missed person being the subject.
  • Conjugation and Pronouns: Learn the conjugation of mancare and the necessary indirect pronouns for correct usage.
  • Intimacy in Language: Explore how using mancare conveys deeper affection and nostalgia in Italian compared to English.
  • Replying to “I Miss You”: Find out how to say “I miss you too” in Italian with the phrase “Anche tu mi manchi”.
  • Expressing Feelings: Emphasize the importance of expressing emotions and connecting with Italian culture through language.

Quick facts

How does the verb "mancare" differ from "to miss" in English?

"Mancare" inverts the subject-object relationship, making the missed person the subject and the one missing them the indirect object.

What is the syntactic structure of "mancare" similar to?

"Mancare" shares its structure with "piacere" (to like) and "servire" (to need), focusing on the person or thing liked, needed, or missed.

Can you omit the subject in Italian when using "mancare"?

Yes, in Italian, the subject is often omitted because verb conjugations indicate the subject. However, the indirect pronoun is mandatory.

What is the conjugation of the verb "mancare" in the first person singular?

The first person singular conjugation of "mancare" is "manco."

How do you say "we miss her" in Italian?

"We miss her" translates to "Ci manca" in Italian, using the indirect pronoun "ci."

How would you translate "I miss you so much" to Italian?

"I miss you so much" translates to "Mi manchi tantissimo" in Italian, expressing deep affection.

Why does the Italian expression "mi manchi" feel more intimate?

"Mi manchi" feels more intimate as the missed person is the subject, emphasizing the nostalgic and affectionate nature of the feeling.

What does "mi manchi" literally translate to?

"Mi manchi" literally translates to "you are missed by me," reflecting the unique structure of Italian emotional verbs.

How do you say "I miss you too" in Italian?

"I miss you too" is translated as "Anche tu mi manchi," where "anche" (too) requires the subject to be expressed.

What cultural insight does learning "mancare" provide?

Learning "mancare" offers insight into Italian culture, where emotions are deeply intertwined with daily interactions, emphasizing relational and emotional connections.

My Thoughts

“I Miss You” in Italian

Do you have friends or relatives in Italy and you haven’t seen them in a long time? Here’s an expression that you might find useful to tell them you miss them.

Luckily for you, there’s just one way to say “I miss you” in Italian, but there are a few structural things you need to know before we dive into the translation and use.

Just like for the verbs “piacere” (to like) and “servire” (to need), the syntactic structure of the verb mancare (to miss) is very different in Italian compared to English.

In English, the person who likes, needs, or misses someone or something is the subject of the sentence, and the liked, needed, or missed object or person is the direct object of the sentence.

In Italian it is the opposite: the liked, needed, or missed object or person is the subject of the sentence, while the person who likes, needs, or misses someone or something is the indirect object. This means that you need either an indirect pronoun or the preposition “a” to introduce the object.

For instance: Mi manchi molto. (“I miss you a lot.”)

Here, “you” is the subject of the verb “mancare” and “mi” is the indirect pronoun, that is, the pronoun “me” introduced by the preposition “a”. In fact, you could also say “a me manchi molto” which translates in the same way.

Mi manchi tanto oggi.

How to say “I Miss you” in Italian

As you might know already, in Italian you can omit the subject. It is a very common habit when speaking Italian, because each verb has its own conjugation. This means that you do not need to specify who the subject is (the personal pronouns),  because the verb itself clarifies it already.

This makes way more sense when using verbs like mancare, because the subject is almost never explicit.

Be careful, though! With these types of verbs, the indirect pronoun is instead mandatory.

Let’s first go through conjugation of the verb “mancare”:

  • Io manco
  • tu manchi
  • lui / lei manca
  • noi manchiamo 
  • voi mancate
  • essi mancano

Let’s now see the indirect pronouns you need to fulfil the valence of the verb, namely the number of arguments the verb needs to be linked to to make sense:

  • a me = mi
  • a te = ti
  • a lui = gli / a lei = le
  • a noi = ci
  • a voi = vi
  • a loro = gli (you can sometimes find “loro”)

With this in mind, how do you say “we miss her” in Italian?

Correct! “Ci manca!”

Mi manchi ogni giorno.

How to Translate “I Miss You” to Italian

The Verb “Mancare”

Now you learned how to say the verb “miss” in Italian, and therefore, also how to say “I miss you”.

Mi manchi tantissimo. Non vedo l’ora di tornare da te.

I miss you so much. I can’t wait to get back to you.

The literal translation would be (tu) mi manchi, but as you’ve read above there’s no need to specify the subject.

How to Use “Mancare”

The difference between mi manchi and “I miss you” might seem subtle, but it’s significant. The Italian expression feels more intimate, as if it were a sigh of nostalgia and affection, something that can’t be fully captured in English.

This is conveyed by the subject being the person you miss rather then the person who experiments the feeling of missing. In Italian, most of the verbs that are related to feelings focus on the person towards which we feel that emotion, like for piacere (to like) and servire (to need).

Learning these important verbs offers more than just new vocabulary. It allows a good understanding of the Italian way of life, where emotions are deeply connected with daily interactions.

Phenomena like this are the reason why I love languages and linguistics!

Mi manchi tanto! Quando ci rivedremo?

How to Say “I Miss You Too”

When someone tells you they miss you, it’s only natural to reply “I miss you too”.  In Italian, this “I miss you too” translates to “Anche tu mi manchi“.

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This time, you can’t omit the subject, as the word anche (too) requires a pronoun or an object.

When put together, “anche tu mi manchi” literally translates to “also you are missed by me”, which is the idiomatic way to express “I miss you too” in Italian.

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Tell Your Loved Ones how Much you Miss Them

It’s important to let people know how much they mean to you, and if you’re apart for some reason, now you know how to say “I miss you” in two languages.

Every use of “mi manchi” will enrich your connection to Italian culture, reminding you that language is not just about words, but about sharing life’s feelings.

Don’t miss the chance to express your feelings, but from now on, do so in Italian!

If you want to learn more Italian, try out our Italian course Ripeti Con Me.

Test your knowledge in 10 quick questions


How do you say "I miss you" in Italian?

The phrase "I miss you" can be translated to "mi manchi" in Italian.

What is the Italian verb for missing?

The Italian verb for "missing" is "mancare". In the phrase "mi manchi" (I miss you), "mancare" is the verb and "mi" is the pronoun for "to me".

Italian word of the day
Non capivo più niente dal sonno.
I was so tired that I couldn’t think.
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