Easy Italian Lesson 1: Easiest Italian

Easy Italian Lesson 1: Easiest Italian



These Easy Italian Lessons will show you how to begin learning Italian as easily and enjoyably as possible.

Find out how much you already know about Italian just because you know English. Since you’ve already spent years studying English, that means you also have been learning some Italian for years without realizing it. There are the many similarities between the two languages you are probably unaware of.


What if you were told that you could read some Italian, even if you never had a lesson?

You might get interested and feel encouraged to learn more.

Well, you will be able to read and understand the following story in Italian because of the many words that look like English.

The story will be fairly clear to you even though written in a foreign language. You will understand the meanings of the main words, so you will be able to figure out the meanings of the other short foreign words.

(The only instruction you need is that, in Italian ‘Io’ means ‘I’ in English.)

These are Dual Language stories, with parallel texts in each language.

The English version of the story is printed above each line of Italian, to make your beginning in Italian as painless as possible..





My car was at the mechanic.

La mia auto era dal meccanico.


I arrived in Roma by train.

Sono arrivato a Roma con il treno.


I continued by taxi.

Ho continuato in taxi.


I arrived at the restaurant.

Sono arrivato al ristorante.


My mother and father were there sitting at the table.

Mia mamma e papà erano lì seduti al tavolo.


The pasta, wine, and fruits were delicious.

La pasta, il vino e la frutta erano deliziosi.


We finished with coffee and ice cream cake.

Abbiamo finito con il caffè e la torta gelato.


Then the police arrived at the restaurant.

Poi arrivò la polizia al ristorante.


A customer was rude to the bartender.

Un cliente era rude con il barman.


So ended the family reunion.

Così è finita la riunione di famiglia





You will be pleasantly surprised to discover that in Italy you would be able to read and understand some Italian sentences — even without having studied the language.



Here is a list of what you will discover in these Easy Italian Lessons that you already know about Italian from English:

1. Over 3,000 words that are spelled exactly or nearly like English words, and mean something similar. They are called COGNATES.

In speaking English, most people use only 800 to 2,000 words. So knowing this large number of cognates amounts to a great head start that will help make Italian easier for you.

2. Other Italian words that are more loosely related to English words — but related enough to help you remember the Italian word.

3. All these words common to both languages will enable you to read a little Italian (especially with the aid of a dictionary to help with other unfamiliar foreign words.)

This will give you a large core of knowledge about Italian based on your acquaintance with it in English.

It will be effortless to transfer this knowledge you already have to the new language.

This will be much less difficult than immediately trying to learn totally new words, new pronunciations, and new grammar of Italian. Those you will be able to acquire more readily after this easy introduction to Italian.

Gradually this new approach will lead you comfortably from identical to similar words that are slightly different in spelling than familiar English words.

By the time you finish these Easy Italian Lessons, you will be aware of the main similarities between the two languages. With all this familiar knowledge as a base, you will be well prepared, and hopefully inspired, to tackle all the new words and pronunciations and grammar you will need to acquire to learn Italian.

This easiest possible beginning may encourage you to want to learn more Italian.

Let these Easy Italian Lessons show you the similarities between Italian and English. This introduction to Italian has been designed to be as effortless as possible for you. This will give you the gift of understanding some Italian without the heavy burden of studying. Enjoy it!



You will find this new type of introduction to Italian to be a much easier way to get into the language than any of the traditional first steps — such as textbooks or tourist phrase books.

Instead, these Easy Italian Lessons will make those less difficult for you as a second step— because you will bring to them an awareness of this mass of information about Italian you already are acquainted with from English.

Learning a foreign language can be overwhelming, to the critical point of discouraging many beginners after initial difficulties or failure. Some people get discouraged trying to learn the new words, new grammar, and new sounds. To understand why this new approach will be so helpful, consider all the things that must be learned:

Obstacles to Foreign Language Learning


1) New words

a) their meanings

b) new spellings

c) new pronunciations


2) Listening to a new language

a) new sound patterns


3) Speaking a new language

a) new phrasing

b) new emphasis and accent


4) New grammar and word order


5) New idioms



These Easy Italian Lessons are the first to reduce the learning overload as much as possible. This way you as a beginner do not have to start out learning totally new words and grammar. This postpones for you many of the obstacles to be overcome until you are better prepared after this easy introduction through words that are similar in both languages.

Only gradually will this approach introduce you to different spellings of Italian cognates for familiar English words.

New pronunciations are introduced along the way. In these Easy Italian Lessons you will be happy to find they are less difficult. Since you already have experience with the cognates from English, it is easier to focus on learning the Italian pronunciation of these familiar words.

These Easy Italian Lessons will help you begin to learn how to pronounce Italian in the easiest possible way, by starting with the obviously Italian words you already know in English. In this way you will readily begin to grasp the patterns of pronunciation in Italian.



As a child, you learned your native language in a natural sequence. First listening (to parents' words), second speaking, third reading (in grade school), and last writing (in the middle grades).

However, the learning sequence differs when you are an adult beginning to learn this foreign language:

First: Reading. Because English and Italian share many words that look alike in print, the easiest ability for you to develop will be reading some Italian.

Second: Listening. Listening to understand spoken Italian is more difficult than reading and will develop much more slowly, because the sounds of the two languages differ greatly and foreigners seem to speak so fast. However, listening to instructional recordings as a second step is a good way to begin learning to understand what all those foreign sounds mean.

Third: Speaking. Speaking Italian, especially speaking it correctly, is more difficult to learn than reading or listening. The pronunciation patterns are different than the ones you are used to in English. Even most of the words spelled identically to English ones are pronounced differently.

Fourth: Writing. Writing, the most complex skill, would develop last, as it does in your native language.

Learning to read some Italian will be helpful if you plan to visit Italy. You will find that reading some Italian will help enable you to navigate your way around, because that depends so much on reading, even more than speaking and listening.



At the start of each Easy Italian Lesson, a story in Italian will reveal that you already are acquainted with some Italian words — the COGNATES with similar spelling in English.

These stories will also reveal that you can comprehend enough of these cognates to enable you to deduce the meanings of some of the unfamiliar short words in Italian that serve as articles, conjunctions, and prepositions.

So along the way you'll also learn a few new Italian words just because they connect these look-alike words you already understand. You’ll absorb unfamiliar words, such as ‘il’ means ‘the’, and ‘e’ means ‘and’. But it won't require much concentration or study — you'll just pick up a few new words as you roll along.

You'll also learn a bit about Italian grammar along the way. But it too will be painless incidental acquisition. For example, you will see that most Italian adjectives come after the words they modify.



The focus in these Easy Italian Lessons is primarily on look-alike words that will be helpful for you as a tourist traveling where Italian is the main language. This draws your attention first to words that will be most useful for your travel, by isolating them from the remainder of the thousands of cognates that are similar in the two languages.

Unlike Italian Phrase Books for travelers, these Easy Italian Lessons feature words that are similar to English, making these tourist word lists the easiest beginning for you.

This will make a Phrase Book with its unfamiliar Italian words less difficult for you as a second step.


NEXT EASY ITALIAN -- LESSON TWO -- Cognates are Italian Words Like English

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