Overwhelmed by Italian pronunciation?
Don’t be. Let me help you with it
Learn how to pronounce the alphabet and popular Italian words with me, a native Italian qualified tutor.
How to improve your Italian pronunciation with audio recordings
Live and learn Italian through my family’s recipes e-course book; get it free on Kindle Unlimited, also available for purchase on kindle.
Benefit learning the Italian language at a beginner level in a well-structured and enjoyable way. Avoid wasting your time learning endless lists of words and phrases which you will systematically forget. Our method has been designed by professional tutors to bring to you a unique Italian experience you can enjoy anytime and anywhere.
This program will give you the tools to build a solid understanding of the Italian language and explore Nonna Lena’s traditional recipes. Nonna Lena’s has been cooking since the age of 12 and she still cooks now at the age of 96, so the recipes have been tried and tested plenty of times.
You get 6 lessons and audio for beginners containing the following Nonna’s Lena (family) recipes:
- Pasta alla carbonara
- Bruschetta, verdure grigliate (grilled vegetables), insalata caprese, (Caprese salad)
- Ciambellone (gradma’s cake)
Bonus: Italian wines to pair with the dishes and more language
Buy it here if you don’t have kindle https://www.languagesalive.com/learn-italian-online/
Why Italian is easy to pronounce
The biggest challenge I encountered when I was learning the English language was its pronunciation. I could not make sense why even a vowel was pronounced differently. For example, the e in elephant and the e in ego or the i in India and the i in diamond; not to mention more complex sounds like synonym or tourism, in which I had to put a lot of effort to pronounce. In a few words, I had to learn by deduction and repetition, but you, lover of the Italian language and culture, you have it easy.
Italian is an entirely phonetic language, so pronunciation is a straight forward deal. Almost all words are read exactly how they are spelt. As long as you learn the Italian alphabet pronunciation and the major sounds you will make it. There are specific rules to be learned. Therefore, don’t feel daunted and start by learning the alphabet sounds with me now, by watching the video below.
Check the full article here https://www.languagesalive.com/how-many-letters-are-in-the-italian-alphabet/
Now that you have a grasp of the Italian alphabet pronunciation, let’s explore the major sounds created by combining the consonants with the 5 Italian vowels; a-e-i-o-u and with the h which is silent.
|c + a, o, u, he, hi||k||Casa (home/house) – Conto (restaurant bill) – Cuore (heart) – Amiche (girlfriends) – Chiesa (church).|
|c + ia, io, iu, e, i||ch||Ciao – Ciotola (bowl) – Ciuccio (pacifier) – Ceci (chickpeas)|
|g + a, o, u, he, hi||g||Gatto (cat) – Governo (government) – Gusto (flavour) – Ghepardo – Ghiro (dormhouse)|
|g + ia, io, iu, e, i||dj||Grattugia (grater) – Giocattolo (toy) – Giusto (correct) – Gelato – Giramondo (globetrotter)|
|sc + a, o, u, he, hi||SK||Scaffale (shelf) – Scoiattolo (squirrel) – Scudo (shield) –Scherzo (joke) – Schifo (disgust)|
|sc + ia, io, iu, e, i||Sh||Sciarpa (scarf) – Sciopero (strike) – Asciutto (dry) – Scena (scene) – Scienza (science)|
Listen to the words in the table
Uncommon sounds in English
Below you can find sounds that are unusual in English. Your task it’s to listen to the audio and repeat them, then find more words with the same sounds in a text or in a book.
- Gli like in aglio (garlic) and figlio (son)
- Gn like in gnocchi and lasagna
The R is rolled with a trill in front of the mouth
- Rosmarino (rosemary)
- Rotolo (roll)
- Riso (rice)
- Righello (ruler)
Uncommon sounds in English audio
Common words pronunciation
Below are the most popular Italian words researched on the web and that is for a reason. Often, the passion for Italian food goes hand in hand with the love for the Italian language. So here you have it; the correct pronunciation so you can impress your friends & family when ordering food and coffee in an Italian restaurant.
- Pasta alla carbonara
- Pasta al dente
- Parmigiano (Parmesan)
- Bucatini (type of pasta)
- Pizza con salamino piccante (pizza with spicy salame)
- Caffè macchiato
- Caffè ristretto (short coffee, strong coffee)
- Latte (milk)
- Caffelatte (latte)
Now it’s time to learn how to pronounce Italian greetings
- Buongiorno (Good morning)
- Buon pomeriggio (Good afternoon, used in some Italian regions or on TV and radio)
- Buonasera (Good evening)
- Buonaserata (Have a good night)
- Buonanotte (Good night, used when ones goes to sleep)
- Arrivederci (Goodbye)
- Ciao (Hello/hi when you meet and when you leave)
- Salve (Hello/hi)
Why you need to pronounce the doubles in Italian
A double consonant is pronounced twice as long as a single one. This is crucial as it can change the meaning of some words completely.
Anno – ano – (year-anus)
Penne – pene – (pens-penis)
Pipa – pippa vulgar – (pipe – wanke)
Cappello – capello – (hat– hair)
Casa – cassa – (house – till)
Notte – note – (night – notes)
Cane – canne – (dog – canes)
Polo – pollo – (pole – chicken)
Sera – serra – (evening – greenhouse)
Pepe– Peppe – (pepper – diminutive of Giuseppe)
Rosa – rossa – (pink – red)
Sete – sette – (thirst – seven)
Strive for progress, not for perfection
Now that you know the Italian sounds, you can practice and improve. If you are interested in taking private tuition online or face to face, I offer a free consultation and half an hour lesson trial. Remember, phonetic ability starts declining after the age of 8.
You might not sound like a native speaker and that is totally OK. Your accent makes who you are and surely makes you fascinating at Italians ‘eyes.
So do not worry about perfection and strive for progress instead!