Come stai?

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by nikkei, Sep 12, 2005.

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  1. nikkei Junior Member

    ciao a tutti!
    per rispondere alla domanda "how are you?", è giusto dire :"I'm fine, thank you. I hope you as well".
    Può avere un senso?!?!


  2. lsp

    lsp Senior Member

    US, English
    Not really. You could say, "You, too, I hope." But even that is not ideal. Generally you'd ask (rather than answer for) the other person. "You?" "And you?"
  3. moodywop Banned

    Southern Italy
    Italian - Italy
    It's not wrong but I don't think it's something anyone would say under normal circumstances(maybe one of the native speakers will be able to think of a context in which it would be used).

    "I hope you are well/OK/in good health" is what you would write in a letter or email. Your interlocutor is right there in front of you - why not simply ask him/her rather than express a hope?:)

    -How are you?

    -Fine, thanks. How are you?
  4. Silvia

    Silvia Senior Member

    A = How are you?
    B = I'm fine thanks. What about you?

    What about that? :D
  5. lsp

    lsp Senior Member

    US, English
    It works, too. Informally, though.
  6. disegno

    disegno Senior Member

    San Francisco
    United States English
    Sono d'accordo. Di solito noi Americani rispondiamo in breve! "Sto bene. Tu?"

    (rispondiamo dicendo "stiamo bene", nonostante che abbiamo appena perso lavoro, il gatto è morto e la casa è stata bruciata....sempre tutto a posto con noi! Nessuno vuole ammettere qualcosa non va. :D )
  7. erick Senior Member

    Los Angeles, California
    California, English
    Ciao Nikkei,

    Disegno ha ragione. In America diciamo, "hi, how are you?" come un saluto: "buon giorno." E poi si risponde automaticamente, "fine, thank you" o "fine, and you?" e basta ... anche se tutto va male e sei dell'umore suicido. La gente che ti chiede "how are you?" come un saluto non vuole sapere sinceramente come stai o cosa hai combinato. L'uso potrebbe essere diverso in Inghilterra ed Irlanda.

    Però se qualcuno ti chiedesse "how are you?" in una lettera/email, credo che sia perché vuol sapere veramente come stai.
  8. Silvia

    Silvia Senior Member

    disegno and erick, once again, it's a matter of culture... in Italian we have lots of answers to say something's wrong :D
  9. leenico

    leenico Senior Member

    U.S.A. english
    It's not wrong, but as most respondents stated, usually you just say "I'm fine, and you." I just wanted to make the small correction in the event you use your original response. ;)
  10. Supafly New Member

    English - USA
    Tu come stai raccontami un po' di te...

    Cosa fai di beool nella vita..

    Mi dispiace ma io non parlo inglese

    Figurati a scrivolo...

    Thanks in advance!
  11. ElaineG

    ElaineG Senior Member

    Brooklyn NY
    How are you? Tell me a little about yourself.

    What cool things do you do in life?

    I'm sorry but I don't speak English, let alone write it!
  12. valy822

    valy822 Senior Member

    Naples / Milan
    Italy- Italian
    scriver-e = write
    lo = it
  13. sexy mama New Member

    calgary alberta
    English Canada
    ciao joan!come stai?e le tue amiche come stanno?spero stiate tutti bene!ho ricevuto la tua
    lettera!anche se non sono riuscito a capire tutto sono sicuro che è molto bella!grazie di vero
    cuore!come sta jr?mi mancate tanto!!!spero con tutto il cuore di tornare a calgary in
    ottobre,questa volta pero per restare con voi!!!vi voglio bene!salutami la tua affascinante
    amica,la ta bellissima figlia,il tuo fortunato marito e quel gelosone di jr!vi abbraccio tutti con
    affetto!il vostro davide!
  14. sweetiepie Senior Member

    Italian - Italy
    Hi Joan, how are you? And How are your friends? Hope you're all fine! I received your letter! Even if I couldn't understand everything, I'm sure it's really beautiful! Thank you so much! How is Jr? I miss you so much! I really hope to come back to calgary in october, and this time it will be to stay with you!!! I love all of you so much!!!Say hello from me to your charming friend, your beautiful daughter, your lucky husband and jr, so jealous!I hug all of you with love!! Yours, Davide
  15. sexy mama New Member

    calgary alberta
    English Canada
    Thanks so much, I appreciate it.
  16. Bristol Exile New Member

    English (United Kingdom)
    The books say 'Come sta' but my Italian friends say these always use 'Come stai'.

    I thought the latter was plural? For more than one person?

    Help please!
  17. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Io sto
    tu stai
    egli sta

    Verb declension..
  18. Bristol Exile New Member

    English (United Kingdom)

    Grazie mille!
  19. Nicholas the Italian Senior Member

    OR formal vs. informal.
    Don't forget in Italian you use "tu" to address young people or people you are familiar with, and "lei" to address strangers or people you pay respect to.
    "Come stai, Alberto?"
    "Come sta, professor De Bortoli?"
  20. mrg Senior Member

    I think you're confusing plural nouns (e.g., those ending in -i) w/the plural verb conjugations (e.g., stai, sing. vs. state, pl.).
  21. racewiththedevil Banned

    I'm learning from a book which gives both Come Stai and Come Sta for "how are you", it doesn't explain the difference between the two.
  22. TimLA

    TimLA Senior Member

    Los Angeles
    English - US
    Come stai? informal - to your friends, family and people younger than you.
    Come sta? formal - to people you've never met, and those older than you.

    Similar to "How are you today?" and "Say, wassup?"
    (well, not exactly, but close :) )
    Welcome to the forum.
  23. TrentinaNE Senior Member

    English (American)
    Stai is the second person singular conjugation of stare (the "tu" or familiar you form), while sta is the third person conjugation (the "Lei" or formal you form). The proper use of the "tu" form of address has been discussed in a number of previous threads. We tend to use it when addressing other members in the forum.

  24. lsp

    lsp Senior Member

    US, English
    One addresses a person informally (stai), the other formally (sta). As you learn to conjugate verbs, you will learn these distinctions, which are present in other romance languages, too.
  25. racewiththedevil Banned

    Ok, thanks, and for the welcome.

    Why do you say the formal version to those older than you? Is it a respect thing?
  26. TimLA

    TimLA Senior Member

    Los Angeles
    English - US
    Yep, it's a respect thing...oh, you know...those old traditions.
  27. racewiththedevil Banned

    I'm sorry, I don't understand any of that.
  28. TrentinaNE Senior Member

    English (American)
    I don't know how far into your study of Italian you are, but at some point you'll have to deal with verb conjugations. The "resources" sticky thread at the top of this forum has links to some helpful web-sites for learning more about Italian. :)

  29. racewiththedevil Banned

    Ok then, thanks.
  30. Guitarlover New Member

    In a few words, "Come stai" is "How are you" used with friends. "Come sta" is "How are you" used with people you don't know so much, with older people and so on. Just like in German where "You" can be translated with "Du" (friendly) or "Sie" (formal). In italian "You" can be "Tu" (friendly) or "Lei" (formal). The shift from "Lei" to "Tu" between two persons means that the rate of their acquaintance is growing higher.
  31. Never Got a Dinner

    Never Got a Dinner Senior Member

    America, English
    1. Yes, "tu" you use with family, friends, and little kids. "Lei" is used with EVERYBODY ELSE! The teller at the bank. The mail carrier. The person at the deli counter. By all means, err on the side of using "Lei!" If the person wants to be friendly with you, let that person tell you. ("Diamoci del tu" he or she might say.) You're not the one to decide!

    Not exactly. In Germany you might stay in the "Sie" form for YEARS. The Germans use "du" comparatively little, much less often than Italians use "tu."
  32. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    I don't think the best style of explaining was given to you, seeing as you said you're reading a book and are only on an early chapter that hasn't expressed the difference between talking to a friend, or a stranger, just keep at your book, and all will become clear soon, I promise, it was the same for me!
  33. Luis_runner New Member

    USA-Spanish, English
    What does it mean? Does it mean how are you and what's up? I'm totally confused!!!!

  34. fitter.happier

    fitter.happier Senior Member

    Naples, Italy
    Yes, you're right. The wrong punctuation might be misleading since it should be: "Come stai? Che fai?" (How are you? What's up?/What are you up to?)
  35. Luis_runner New Member

    USA-Spanish, English
    So If I only want to say "what's up" it will be "che fai? Or does it have to go together with "come stai? che fai? in order to get the full meaning of what are you up to?

  36. dylanG3893

    dylanG3893 Senior Member

    United States
    Not at all! Go ahead! Say "Che fai?" it generally means 'what are you doing'/'what are you up to'?
  37. rom30_six Junior Member

    "Come stai?" is like "How are you"?

    "Come stai, oggi"? "How are you, today"?

    I'm a learner too, but I know this for sure.
    Yeah, this is my moment of glory Haha.
  38. Lil' New Member

    Italy Italian
    What about ""how are you doing?"...does it mean "how are you?" ?
    It seems to me that the first expression is most used than the second one, is it right?

  39. TrentinaNE Senior Member

    English (American)
    How are you doing is more casual/colloquial than how are you.

    Reminder: please don't use "chatspeak/SMS" abbreviations in the forums. Thanks. :)

  40. New Member

    Israel [Hebrew, Russian, Arabic, English, Italian]
    What can I answer to those questions accept the regular "Bene. Grazie. E tu"?
    What do you think of "Non c'è male"?
  41. Mrs.Mustaine Senior Member

    Bergamo, Italy
    Yeah, you can answer that or "Non male" (=not bad), " Non posso lamentarmi" (=I cannot complain).
  42. shamela Senior Member

    Lake Garda
    Italy - Italian
    "Non c'è male" va benissimo, only it sounds that you aren't really ok, but maybe it depends on the way you say it!

    Some people in my region say also "benone grazie", "tutto a posto grazie", anyother suggestion?
  43. Kash Senior Member

    India, Hindi
    I have also heard of "Tutto al posto" and "Così-Così'.
  44. Mrs.Mustaine Senior Member

    Bergamo, Italy
    "Tutto a posto" (=everything's fine) yeah.
    "Così-Così" means you aren't completely fine.

    Well, you can also need to answer you aren't fine at all.
    "Non bene"
    "Potrei stare meglio" (=I could be/feel better)
    and so on...
  45. AndrewK Senior Member

    Poiché si dice "che fai" invece di "cosa stai facendo", si può dire anche "che mangi" o "che guardi" invece di "cosa stai mangiando" e "cosa stai guardando"?
  46. dylanG3893

    dylanG3893 Senior Member

    United States
    In questo caso, sembra così. Direi sì.
  47. _LuNa_

    _LuNa_ Junior Member

    Italia - Italiano

    E' la stessa cosa :)
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