Italian is the official language of Italy, and native Italian speakers account for 93% of the population. Other northern minority languages include Ladin, Slovene, German (which has equal status with Italian in the province of Alto-Adige), and French (which is officially recognized in the Val d'Aosta Alpine area). Southern Italians speak primarily Neapolitan dialect alphabets (rather than the standard Italian alphabet) and have little knowledge of any other language. However, many residents of Calabria, Sicily, and Sardinia also speak other regional languages: Sicilian, Palermo Arabic, or a local form of Spanish, respectively.
Until 1945, Italian was the only official language in all of Europe. Today, however, Germany also grants some language rights to its citizens within their respective federal states. In addition, Austria, Switzerland, and Slovenia allow their citizens to use both languages on a voluntary basis. Language laws in these countries require that schools teach two languages from among English, German, and one of another European Union official language. So although German is not an official language in Italy or anywhere else in Europe, it is still the second most widely spoken language across the continent.
Italy became the first country in Europe to abolish its monarchy and declare itself a republic back in 1946. Since then, it has had six presidents. The current president is Sergio Mattarella, who is also the prime minister of Italy. He has the power to grant amnesty and can therefore release political prisoners.
The Official Language of Italy It boasts a heterogeneous population of more than 60 million people who speak a variety of languages ranging from minority languages to regional dialects. However, Italian is the official language of Italy. It is also one of the most spoken languages in Europe after English.
Italian has been described as a difficult language because of its complex grammar and pronunciation rules. However, if you learn some basic expressions and phrases, you will be able to communicate with native speakers. Below are some tips on how to speak Italian:
Use short sentences and clear words: The most common mistake when speaking Italian is that we try to use too many words to express ourselves. We often start sentences with non-essential words such as ero, eri, essere, stai, sto, etc. These unnecessary words make sentences longer and less clear. Try to use as few words as possible while still getting your point across.
Avoid using verbs ending in -are or -ere to form passive sentences: You can form passive sentences by adding the word "that" + present participle (infinitive) to any verb.
|Languages of Italy|
|Minority||see “historical linguistic minorities”|
|Immigrant||Spanish, Albanian, Arabic, Romanian, Hungarian, Polish, Ukrainian, Russian, Bulgarian, and Romani|
|Foreign||English (34%) French (16%) Spanish (11%) German (5%) Other regional language (6%)|
|Signed||Italian Sign Language|
The Italian language is said to have originated in Italy. Albania's most widely spoken foreign language is Italian. It is spoken by around 800,000 people. When Albania was a protectorate of Italy, it was regarded an official language. That means that students were taught Italian as part of their education. Today, though, it is not used as much for educational purposes as English.
Italy has been called the homeland of languages because it has such a variety of tongues. Latin is the official language of Rome but many people also speak English, French, Spanish, Albanian, Croatian, German, and other languages.
During the Middle Ages, Italians started to write in their own language which led to the creation of modern Italian. Before this, there were different dialects of Latin but no one language existed until then. So, Italy has been called the homeland of the Italian language since its beginnings.
The two nations share a lengthy border as well as three shared languages (Italian is one of Switzerland's four official languages; German and French are recognized minority languages in Italy; nonetheless, Romansh is similar to Ladin and Friulian, which are spoken in Northern Italy).
Also like Italy, Switzerland has many cities and towns. Most major cities have populations over 100,000 people: Bern has 170,000 people, Geneva 150,000 people, Milan 1 million people, Rome 800,000 people, Venice 400,000 people. There are also several smaller cities with populations between 10,000 and 100,000 people: Aarau, Arona, Basel, Bellinzona, Bienne, Chur, Davos, Frau, Gstaad, Luzern, Meiringen, Montreux, Murten, Nyon, Olten, Payerne, Pfäffikon, Raron, Sion, Solothurn, St. Gallen, Thun, Vevey, Visp.
In addition to Italian and German, Switzerland speaks French and English too. However, if you only speak one language at home, it will be your choice. The national government provides financial assistance to immigrants who wish to learn the language of their host country. This program is called "Ministerium für Ausländerangelegenheiten" or MAE for short-MAA.