Is it hard to learn Italian?
We can pay people to do things for us, write for us, sell for us, speak for us. But we cannot have anyone, paid or unpaid, learn something for us. Unfortunately, we have to put the effort into the task if we want to learn it.
So, of course, if you want to learn Italian, you just have to do it. Yes, the wonderful YOU. Which is where the fun lies, right?
But is it hard to learn Italian?
It’s up to you: how much time you have, how disciplined you are, how motivated you can be, how engaging your teacher is, how cool your resources are. We all know this, right?
I can reassure you, though, that the Italian language has some pretty features that makes it easier to learn.
So, if you are wondering if Italian is for you and if you are going to make it, read on.
Here are some really exciting and encouraging facts about the Italian language:
A) At least 30% of English comes from Latin. Now, since Italian is a language for the most part derived from Latin, we can deduce that many words in English will resemble words in Italian.
Take station, nation, conversation and formation. The correspondent Italian words are stazione, nazione, conversazione and formazione. Too easy!
Or society, city, university, which magically become societa`, citta` and universita` in Italian. Simple!
For more of these, leave me a message below.
B) Another cool feature of the Italian language is that each letter has its own unmistakable sound, meaning that you don’t have to guess anything. Once you learn the sound of a letter, you can pretty much use that sound every time you see it.
How many times learners of English have faced the dilemma of pronouncing words such as thought and caught, where different letters sounds the same? Or when the same letter changes from one word to another (home and come for example)?
So, another score for Italian!
C) You might whinge at the fact that Italian gives a gender to every concrete thing and abstract concept. However, we provide very clear clues as to the the gender of a word.
words ending in -o are masculine (cappuccino) and words ending in -a are feminine (pizza). Again, pretty simple, isn't it? More on vowels here.
Zucchero (sugar) is a masculine word.
All in all, I’m in favour of the statement that Italian is not a difficult language to learn. And if you love it, then the task becomes even easier.
Viva la semplicita`! (Hail simplicity!)