Today, we’re going to talk about Italian words. More specifically, about the most popular Italian word, ciao, and the importance of the word mangiare (to eat).
We’ll also mention the most common Italian words.
Let’s dive deeper into the topic!
The most popular Italian word
It’s hard to tell which is the most popular Italian word.
We chose the word ciao, which means hello and is pronounced as “chaw”, since it’s a word Italians use every day.
It is mainly used in informal contexts. You can say ciao to friends and family members.
Ciao comes from the Venetian dialect (spoken in the Northeast of Italy), more specifically from the phrase s-ciào vostro, literally meaning “I am your slave”.
In the 17th century, this expression was used by servants when addressing their employers.
Often, s-ciào vostro was shortened to simply s-ciào and then to ciào.
With time, this word lost all its servile connotations and started to be used as an informal greeting.
Read more about the most popular Italian word.
The verb mangiare in Italian
This is probably the most important verb you need to know if you’re planning to go to Italy!
It is well known all around the world that the boot-shaped peninsula has a huge eating culture.
Mangiare is a regular verb of the first conjugation and follows the typical –are pattern:
Io mangio= I eat
Tu mangi= you eat
Lui/Lei mangia= He/she eats
Noi mangiamo= we eat
Voi mangiate= you (plural) eat
Loro mangiano= they eat
Here’s a list of all the Italian meals you will find yourself invited to by your Italian friends:
light meal, nibble
spuntino di mezzanotte
Just so you know, it is incorrect to use mangiare followed by the meals we just described above, so we DO NOT SAY: mangiare colazione, pranzo, etc.
Instead, for colazione, spuntino, merenda and aperitivo, we use the word fare (to do):
to have breakfast
fare uno spuntino
to have a nibble
to have a snack
to have an aperitif
To talk about lunch (pranzo) and dinner (cena), we actually use these verbs:
to have lunch
to have dinner
Learn more about the verb mangiare in Italian.
The most common Italian words
Did you know that knowing as little as 100 words helps you understand half of the words in an article or book written in Italian?
Learn the most common 1000 words and you get to a 75% understanding of texts in Italian!
Let’s have a look at some of the most common Italian words:
volta (as in “many times”)
time and weather