The More… the More… in Italian [Grammar Lesson]


Key Takeaways

Unlock the secrets of sounding like a native with the Italian “the more… the more…” and its variations! This guide will have you mastering these expressions in no time, adding flair to your Italian conversations. 🇮🇹✨

  • Understanding Comparative Correlatives: Discover how the “più… più…” structure expresses correlations between two variables in Italian.
  • Examples in Context: See practical examples illustrating the use of comparative correlatives with adjectives, nouns, and adverbs.
  • Using Opposites: Learn how to use “meno… meno…” to express negative correlations in Italian.
  • Combining Più and Meno: Explore mixed structures like “più… meno…” to convey complex comparisons.
  • Common Phrases: Familiarize yourself with frequently used expressions such as più siamo, meglio è (the more, the merrier).
  • Practice Tips: Get advice on practicing daily to master these structures and speak Italian like a native.

Quick facts

What is a comparative correlative in Italian?

It's a sentence structure using "più" or "meno" to show correlation between two variables, mirroring English's "the more... the more..."

How does Italian handle comparative correlatives with adjectives?

Unlike English, Italian uses "più" consistently without changing the adjective's form, making it straightforward regardless of the word type.

Can comparative correlatives in Italian express negative correlations?

Yes, "meno... meno..." structures express decreasing relationships, like "meno guadagni, meno potrai acquistare" (the less you earn, the less you can buy).

Can you mix "più" and "meno" in comparative correlatives?

Absolutely, combinations like "meno mangi, più avrai fame" (the less you eat, the more you'll be hungry) are common and expressive.

How do you say "the more, the better" in Italian?

"Più siamo, meglio è" translates directly to "the more, the better," retaining both meaning and structure.

How is "the more, the worse" expressed in Italian?

"Più ti stressi, peggio ti sentirai" means "the more you stress, the worse you'll feel," using "peggio" for "worse."

Why is the "più... più..." structure useful in daily conversation?

It vividly expresses comparisons and relationships, making it a practical tool for clear and dynamic communication.

What should you do to master these structures in Italian?

Daily practice and engaging in conversations are key to understanding context and nuances, helping you sound more like a native speaker.

What's a practical tip for using comparative correlatives in Italian?

Practice frequently with phrases like "più pratica fai, meglio impari" (the more you practice, the better you learn) to embed them into your speech.

How does "meno ti preoccupi, meno ti stresserai" illustrate a concept?

It demonstrates how reducing worry leads to less stress, using "meno... meno..." to show a direct, inverse relationship.

My Thoughts

“The More… the More…” in Italian

In linguistics, this type of sentence structure is called a comparative correlative. A comparative correlative is the use of two comparatives to express correlation between two variables.

This is certainly a good expression to add to your Italian repertoire if you want to sound like a native, and it is so easy!

Let’s have a look at some examples of how to use it correctly:

Più ti conosco più mi piaci.

The more I know you, the more I like you.

Più cerco di rilassarmi, più mi innervosisco.

The more i try to relax, the more nervous I get.

Più studi, più preparato sarai per l’esame.

The more you study, the more prepared you will be for the exam.

When we use this construction with English adjectives, we just add -er to the end of the adjective. On the contrary, this construction never varies in Italian, whether it is used with adjectives, nouns or adverbs.

Più alto è il prezzo, più nuovo è il prodotto.

The higher the price, the newer is the product.

Più alto sei, più velocemente corri.

The taller you are, the faster you run.

More or Less?

How to use “più” and “meno” in Italian

This comparative correlative can also be used with the opposite meaning, which in English is translated with “the less… the less…”.

Meno guadagni, meno potrai acquistare.

The less you earn, the less you can buy.

Meno ti preoccupi, meno ti stresserai.

The less you worry, the less you become stressed.

Just like in English, you can even mix più (the more) and meno (the less):

Meno mangi, più avrai fame stasera.

The less you eat, the more you will be hungry tonight.

Più ti preoccupi, meno dormirai.

The more you worry, the less you will sleep.

“The More, the Better” in Italian

The literal translation of the English words “better” and “worse” is meglio and peggioin Italian. Since the structure of this Italian construction is very similar to English, you shouldn’t be surprised to discover that also in this case it works in the same way.

Più siamo, meglio è.

The more the better (merrier).

Più ti stressi, peggio ti sentirai.

The more you stress, the worse you will feel.

Meno studi, peggio andrà l’esame.

The less you study, the worse your exam will go.

Learn more about the Italian adjective bene.

Experimenting with “the More… the More” Structures

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Once you will grasp these structures, you will found yourself frequently using them in conversations, I promise! In fact, the “più… più…” structure is a very useful way to express comparisons vividly.

My advice, as always, is that you practice daily to better understand the context and the nuances of Italian expressions. Engage in conversations, either with friends or with our AI tutor, challenge yourself and learn Italian as a native speaker!

Remember: più pratica fai, meglio impari! (the more you practice, the better you learn!)

Test your knowledge in 10 quick questions

How do you say better and worse in Italian?

We say "meglio" and "peggio". 

Does "più... più..." or "meno... meno..." has any construction rules?

The construction stays the same whether it is used with adjectives, nouns or adverbs.

Italian word of the day
Hai la febbre! Sì, mi è venuta l’influenza.
You have a fever! Yes, I got influenza.
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