Italian is a Romance language spoken by around 60 million people in Italy and another 70 million people around the world. Of all the Romance languages, it is considered to be the closest to Latin in terms of vocabulary.
Italy's cities have always had individual and distinctive dialects because they used to be independent city-states. However, it was the Tuscan dialect (spoken in Florence, Pisa and Siena) that established itself as the current modern Italian.This was not for the usual political, economic or military reasons, but thanks to the cultural prestige it acquired as the language of The Divine Comedy. This poem is considered the first masterpiece written in the 'lingua moderna'.
Italian around the world
Italian is a mother language in Italy, Switzerland, San Marino and Vatican City, and one of the official languages of the European Union (EU).
It is also spoken in more than 26 other countries with significant Italian communities. These include the United States, Australia, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Uruguay, Venezuela, Canada and Germany.Italian is a native and official language
Italian is a secondary or non-official language
Italian is minority language
Why learn Italian?
- Add a new skill to your CV - the ability to speak Italian would be an advantage in a job interview with any international business.
- Learn Italian to help you learn other languages , especially other Latin languages such as French, Spanish and Portuguese.
- Italian is a major language in the European Community
- Italy has one of the richest cultural and artistic heritages in the world - Italian is the language of cuisine, theatre, architecture and the arts!
- “All roads lead to Rome!”
Learn Italian online with busuu.com
With our free Italian language course, you can learn by talking to native Italian speakers around the world!
As well as learning directly from other users, you can use our interactive language learning materials to practise and improve your language skills.
The materials are arranged into learning units. Each one is based on a certain topic and contains all of the most important vocabulary and phrases.
What does each language learning unit include?
|Vocabulary: Learn important words and expressions with the aid of pictures and audio clips. Premium Members can also listen to key phrases.|
|Dialogue: Improve your reading comprehension with a fun dialogue, followed by questions to test your understanding. Premium Members can also listen to the audio version.|
|Writing exercise: Develop your written skills by writing a short text for other users to correct.|
|busuu-talk: Connect with native speakers via our integrated video-chat application, which allows you to chat online or even talk to other users in the busuu.com community.|
|Review: Test how much you've learnt with a short quiz and win busuu-berries!|
|PDF: Print out a PDF with each of the grammar and learning units, so that you can even study offline. This tool is only available to Premium Members.|
|Podcast: Listen to podcasts containing the vocabulary, example sentences and dialogues for each of the grammar and learning units. This tool is only available to Premium Members.|
|Voice recording: You can practise your pronunciation, by recording a character’s part in a dialogue, and posting it for native speakers to correct you. Voice recording is only available for Premium Members.|