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Spanish And Italian

Discussion in 'Italian Language' started by Avocadogirl, Mar 5, 2015.

  1. I am taking Spanish at the moment, only because they didn't offer Italian at my school. I have heard that Spanish is very similar to Italian. I have also heard that because of this similarity, it is much easier to learn one after learning the other. Have any Spanish speakers experienced this? If so, do you think it was just the ease that comes with learning a third language rather than a second one, or was it the connection between Spanish and Italian?
     
  2. I've learned Spanish in high school. I have some Hispanic friends as well whom told me that most Italians are considered Spanish or Hispanic. The languages do sound a bit familiar though. Sorry, that didn't answer you question but I think there is some relation between the two.
     
  3. I have been learning Spanish for two years now, and I do find certain similarities between Spanish and Italian, but I wouldn't say that the languages are very similar. The structure of sentences is different. In my perception, Italian is unique in many ways. The intonation and pronunciation of the Italian language is something that most people immediately recognize without knowing a single word of Italian.
     
  4. After studying Spanish all throughout grade school and into high school, I was very shocked to realize the similarities between Italian and Spanish. However, there are plenty of differences, even though I am no expert in either language. I am currently learning Italian, so I am still grasping the concept of the language.
     
  5. I agree with what many have posted here. There are differences and similarities. The sentence structure is different base don what I recall from studying the two languages. However there are particular sounds that seem alike. I think that having learned a second language the third would come easier. People who learn several languages form my understanding do have an ease with learning new languages. I wonder how they keep them all straight.
     
  6. I tried learning Spanish before, and took French also at the same time. I was consumed in the amount of time I used to learn Spanish and to practice French. I think it's better to pair learning Spanish with Italian and not French like what I did, because the two are somewhat similar in the way they sound, but I really don't think it's easy to learn to languages at the same time. Especially if you're learning and working. They can be very time consuming and tiring. I hope you have your priorities straight.
     
  7. I agree. Some of the verb tenses require similiar conjugations, and there are some similar words. However, the intonation is much different. One major difference is that plurals in English and Spanish both end in "s", while Italian uses "i" or "e" depending on gender. Many main verbs are different like to eat is "comer" in Spanish, but in Italian it's "mangiare".
     
  8. I speak Spanish and I have found that I can often understand many Italian words and phrases because they sound the same in both Spanish and Italian. I agree that the conjugations are similar as well. Anyhow, if you have learned one language it will be easier to pick up on another as a natural process.
     
  9. I had a choice between learning Italian or Spanish and picked up the first. I've been around since February 2013 and heard some friends, as well as native speakers, talking in Spanish and I'd say it seems to sound very similar but actually it's not like this.
     
  10. A lot of Europeans I have met when traveling seem to be able to speak multiple languages - and often it does seem to be Spanish and Italian as two that feature together. I only know the basics of Spanish and Italian myself, but even within the basics there are a lot of similarities.
     
  11. I don't really know if their are similarities at this stage as this is still new to me. It would be helpful to anyone if there are. However, I would never consider learning two languages at the same time. That could be quite stressful.
     
  12. I studied Spanish for 8 years then I started studying Italian. It might have just been me but I would get so confused between the two of them. They are very similar in the way the tenses are used. They also have a lot of similar verbs. I think you will be able to get a grip of one if you know the other. It just may take some time to make sure you aren't confusing the two!
     
  13. Update: Not long ago I met my Italian friend. He told me that he's able to understand Spanish easily, even though he doesn't speak it and never even learned. He says words sound very similar and that's the key. Okay, I trust him. Maybe native speakers are really good at this.
     
  14. It's true, in terms of lexical similarity. Lexical similarity is a measure of the degree to which the word sets of two given languages are similar. It is also true that they both originated from Latin, making it easier for one to know the other language.
    Spanish and Italian are more similar than Spanish and Portuguese.
     
  15. I definitely want to add one point to this. I think if you have a background in Spanish, Italian can help you improve your Spanish since a lot of general expression is the same. However, I also want to point out that Italian has naturally led me to French. I was watching a Historical Linguistics seminar on YouTube that was filmed in Rome (the name of the video is 'History and Geography of Languages - Festival Della Scienze 2014 in Roma,' if anyone is interested). A surprising fact is that Italian and French have more true word cognates than any other two languages! So even though Italian and Spanish may sound similar if your native language is a Germanic one, Italian and French have the most cognates in common of all of the Romance languages.

    Spanish is more encouraged in America because people love to talk about how "practical" it is. But I think if you love Italian, it is still practical because it's closer to Latin than any of the Romance languages. So in that way, it's bound to help you with your Spanish and perhaps French as well. Personally, I fell in love with all things Italy, so if there's one language I want to be fluent in, it's Italian.
     
  16. Personally I took 4 years of Spanish in High school. When going to italy i found that my spanish was practically useless! Nobody understood a thing i said at all! I ended up using my english (native language) to engage with the locals who spoke it. Could have just been my experience though!
     
  17. As an italian speaker who is learning spanish, I can tell you that while the two languages might seem very similar in reality they have some big differences, in spite of their common derivation. The sentence structure for example as someone else said, the punctuation, the spelling, the accents, the pronunciation are different. Besides some of the words might sounds similar but they have different meanings so it's very easy to make a mistake.
    Maybe it might seem odd but I found much easier learning english than spanish.
     
  18. If you learn Spanish it would be easier for you to learn Italian. They are two similar languages, but not as similar as some non-speakers of them like to believe. I'm a Spanish native speaker and, if I turn on the radio and tune in to an Italian radio station, I understand less than the 40% of what they say, and I probably end up understanding what they say because of the context.
     
  19. Spanish and Italian are indeed what you call partially mutually intelligible languages. A lot of languages are related like that if they share the same root. Usually these relationships are not symmetrical and often the speaker of one language understand a lot of the foreign language while the opposite is not true. I don't know what's the case between these two languages but I could venture a guess and say that Spanish speaking people understand more Italian than Italian people understand Spanish. Portuguese is another language that you could consider mutually intelligible with both Spanish and Italian.

    Believe it or not I have found some similar sounding words and structures in german and Italian.

    Fun fact: the Italian word for butter means donkey in Spanish.
     
  20. Thе rеаsоn Itаliаn аnd Spаnish аrе quitе undеrstаndаblе еасh оthеr is nоt оnly thе similаrity in grаmmаr аnd thе соmmоn wоrds, but mаinly thе usе оf similаr sоunds in prоnunсiаtiоn.
     

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