The 80 best Italian Proverbs and Expressions
Jul 15, 2021
"Mamma mía!" This is perhaps the most recognized Italian expression worldwide, but there are many more phrases that speak of life, luck and even love, showing the versatility and joy of these outgoing people. But the most curious fact is that you will be able to recognize several of these, since they are known in their Spanish version.
Best Italian Proverbs and Expressions
Do you want to know what these Italian proverbs are? Then stay in this article where we bring a compilation of the best most popular sayings of Italy.
1. A caval donato non si guarda in mouth. (A gift horse does not look at his tusk)
Always be grateful for what you receive.
2. A buon intenditor, poche parole. (A good listener few words)
Express yourself clearly and precisely.
3. Cui niente sa, di niente hesitates. (He who knows nothing, he does not doubt anything)
It is better to ask than to remain ignorant.
4. Stare with the mani in hand. (Be with hands in hand)
Referring to when they catch us red-handed.
5. Dove l’oro parla, ogni lingua tace. (Where gold speaks, everyone is silent)
There are people who sell for a price.
6. Chi la dura la vince. (He who perseveres wins)
Things are accomplished with patience and perseverance.
7. Chi dorme non piglia pesci. (Who sleeps, does not take fish)
Do not miss the opportunities that are presented to you.
8. chi dai il dito if it turns on anche il braccio. (Give them a finger and they'll take your arm)
There are those who abuse your kindness.
9. Eat and cavoli for a snack. (Like cabbages for a snack)
A popular proverb that denotes the importance of saving, rather than splurging.
10. Speranza mi da vita. (Hope gives me life)
Hope is a great motivation.
11. Non ci piove. (It doesn't rain on us)
Always keep a positive attitude.
12. Come il cacio sui maccheroni. (Like cheese in macaroni)
There are things that are as they are.
13. A chi vuole, non mancano modi. (Where there is a will, there is a way)
You can always get ahead if that is what you are looking for.
14. Il lupo loses il pelo ma non il vizio (The wolf loses his hair, but not his habit)
There are attitudes that few are capable of changing or eliminating.
15. Batti il ferro finché è broth. (You have to keep insisting)
To achieve something, you have to insist on it.
16. Fatti maschi, parole femmine. (The facts are male, the words female)
A somewhat macho saying, which says that men are more focused, while women are very emotional.
17. È meglio star solo che mal accompagnato. (Better to be alone than in bad company)
There are companies that are not worth keeping.
18. Piove sul bagnato. (Rains, it pours)
Talking a bit about bad luck.
19. Chi ha denti non ha pane e chi ha pane non ha denti. (He who has teeth has no bread and he who has bread has no teeth)
There are those who have one thing but want or need another.
20. Chi trova a friend, trova a treasure. (Whoever finds a friend finds a treasure)
How important are your friends to you?
21. The frettolosa gatta fece i gattini ciechi. (The cat in a hurry creates blind children)
Things that are done in a hurry don't always pay off.
22. Chi ben comincia è a metà dell'opera. (Whoever begins well is in the middle of the work)
A positive attitude helps us cope better with problems.
23. Or mangiar quella minestra or jump quella finestra. (Either eat this soup or jump out the window)
When you only have one option left.
24 Non v’è rosa senza spina. (There are not roses without spines)
All good things have a bad thing.
25. Acqua in bocca! (Mouth watering!)
What things make your mouth water?
26. Chi fa da se, fa per tre. (Who does it alone, does three)
People who don't show off their achievements do more than we imagine.
27. Che sarà sarà. (What will be will be)
A very popular saying about leaving the results of actions to fate.
28. L'erba del vicino è semper più verde. (The neighbor's grass is always greener)
Saying about envy.
29. Chi dorme non piglia pesci. (Who gets up early, God helps)
Apparently one of the most widely used proverbs in many parts of the world.
30. L’amor che muove il sole e l'altre stelle. (The love that moves the sun and the stars)
Love conquers every part of us.
31. The bad company è quella che mena gli uomini alla forca. (Bad company leads men to the gallows)
Be careful with those around you, because they can harm you.
32. Non sei capace di tenerti un cece en bocca. (You are not able to keep a chickpea in your mouth)
Talking about people who talk too much.
33. In un mondo di ciechi un orbo è re. (In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king)
There is no worse blind than the one who does not want to see.
34. Chi loves, crede. (He who loves, trusts)
Part of loving a person is trusting them completely.
35. Ride bene chi ride last (Who laughs last laughs better)
Don't be in a rush to be the first, because it might be better to be the last.
36. Chi fa da se, fa per tre. (Do it yourself if you want it done right)
Don't be afraid to take charge when necessary.
37. Ogni pazzo vuol give consiglio. (Every crazy person wants to give advice)
There are those who love to judge and point as if they were great sages.
38. Finché c’è vita c’è hope. (Where there's life there's hope)
Hope and life go hand in hand.
39. Non avere peli sulla lingua. (Don't mince words)
There are people who are too honest.
40. Siamo tutti figli d’Adamo. (We are all children of Adam)
We are all people, flesh and blood humans.
40. A goccia a goccia s’incava la pietra. (Drop by drop the stone wears away)
Little problems accumulate until they erupt.
41. Il buon giorno si vede dal mattino. (The good day is seen in the morning)
A good day begins by waking up with energy.
42. Chi trova has. (The one who searches, finds)
For better or worse.
43. Il troppo stroppia. (Excess is not good)
Excess ends up making us addicts.
44. È meglio aver little che niente. (Better to have little than nothing)
A very wise proverb. So we must appreciate what we have.
45. Chiodo scaccia chiodo. (One nail pulls out another nail)
Is this true?
46. Chi tace acconsente. (Who is silent, aware)
Silence can be an affirmation.
47. Chi non fa, non falla. (He who does not do, does not fail)
He who does not risk wins nothing.
48. Fra i due litiganti il terzo gode. (Between two who fight, the third is the one who enjoys)
In a fight, there is never a true winner.
49. Chi troppo vuole, nulla stringe. (Jack of all trades, master of none)
Better to focus on one thing and make it perfect than to want to be good at everything.
50. Tempo to tempo. (Time to time)
Patience is more beneficial than you think.
51. Dimmi with chi vai, and I'll tell you chi sei. (Tell me who you go with and I'll tell you who you are)
Our companies can expose what we hide.
52. Da che pulpit comes preaching! (What pulpit does the sermon come from)
You cannot point to someone who has made your same mistakes.
53. Bisogna prima pensare e poi fare. (Loose lips sink ships)
Don't let your tongue condemn you.
54. Chi near bad, bad trova. (He who seeks evil usually finds it)
When we go with a bad intention, we do not expect a good result.
55. Non è tutto oro quel che luccica. (It's not all gold that glitters)
People are not always what they say they are.
56. L’abito non fa il monaco (The dress does not create the monk)
Looks are deceiving.
58. Chi goes piano, goes healthy and goes long. (Slow and sure)
Things that are done little by little have the best results.
59. One per one non fa male a nessuno. (One by one, it doesn't hurt nobody)
Whatever you do, make sure no one gets hurt.
60. A nemico che fugge, fa un ponte d'oro. (Make a golden bridge for a fleeing enemy)
Make the way easy for whoever wants you out of their life. That way he will not return.
61. He è il mio cavallo di battaglia. (It's my workhorse)
Your own abilities are the weapons you need to face the world.
62. Tra il dire and il fare, c'è di mezzo il mare. (Between saying and doing, the sea is involved)
We don't always do what we promise.
63. Talk good, ma talk little. (She speaks well, but speaks little)
The things that are talked about more are unnecessary.
64. I will give Cesare that che è di Cesare, I will give Dio that che è di Dio. (Give to Caesar what is Caesar's, give God what is God's)
Give respect to those who deserve it.
65. In bocca al lupo. (In the mouth of the wolf)
Have you ever been to the wolf's mouth?
66. Odi, veti et tace, I will live in pace. (Keep your mouth closed and your ears open)
Sometimes listening is better than talking.
67. He gave, took a door, pressed a door. (God, if he closes a door, opens a gate)
A missed opportunity can mean a better course.
68. Aiutati che Dio ti aiuta. (Help yourself and God will help you)
For your goals to be met, you must be proactive.
69. È meglio un uovo oggi di a hen domani. (A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush)
It is better to have something certain than to chase illusions.
70. The calm è la virtù dei forti. (Calm is the virtue of the great)
Calm makes us analyze situations better.
71. Belle parole non pascon i gatti. (Good words don't feed cats)
Words are not enough to ensure, improve or change something.
72. La pigrizia è la chiave della povertà. (Laziness is the key to poverty)
Laziness is not an ally of success.
73. Finito il gioco, il re and il pedone tornano nella stessa scatola. (After the game is over, the king and the pawn return to the same box)
A metaphor that tells us that death comes to all of us.
74. Ai mali Estremi, Mali rimedi. (For various diseases, various remedies)
One solution will not be effective for all problems.
75. La povertà è la madre di tutte le arti. (Necessity is the mother of all sciences)
Many achievements are the source of human need.
76. Love tutti fa uguali. (Love makes all men the same)
Love does not make distinctions.
77. Amore e tosse non si possono nascondere. (Love and cough can not be hidden)
We cannot hide our feelings for a person for long.
78. È meglio un presente che due futuri. (Better one now than two in the future)
It is better to solve a problem now than to wait for them to accumulate in the future.
79. Più facile a dirsi che a Farsi. (Easier said than done)
There are things that are not easy to do.
80. Meglio tardi che mai. (Better late than never)
If you want to do something, do it. There are no time limits to grow.