My friend

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by caribbeansoul, Apr 28, 2005.

  1. caribbeansoul New Member

    usa ENGLISH
    What is the term for "my friend" in Italian?
    My Grandmother told me Paisan meant "my friend"
    I may have the spelling wrong.
    Thanks for your help in advance.:eek:
  2. winnie

    winnie Senior Member

    italy, italian
    hi caribbeansoul! welcome to this forum.

    what you are asking for has been already discussed in some previous threads.
    if you digit paesà in the 'search' option you will find a lot.

    anyway 'my friend' is amico mio
    paisà, paisan, paesano stand for (coming) from the same village/town. when Italian people had to emigrate to earn theirself a life obviusly they long for their home Land. they did not know English and were strangers in a strange land, so every person coming from the same country was automatically a friend or paesano.

  3. Silvia

    Silvia Senior Member

    Amico mio as a vocative, il mio amico for the rest.
  4. pinkrosefyre New Member

    United States -- English
    I always use mi amico(a). Is this wrong?
  5. Jacob Senior Member

    New Jersey, United States
    English (United States)
    Yes. Mi is Spanish for my.
  6. pinkrosefyre New Member

    United States -- English
    Whoops! So is it amico mio or mio amico? Thanks! :eek:
  7. brian

    brian Senior Member

    AmE (New Orleans)
    As Silvia said, "amico mio" in the vocative (meaning when you're addressing someone as "my friend"), but "il mio amico" otherwise.

    A: Ciao, amico mio! Come stai? = Hey, my friend! How are you doing?
    B: Male. :mad: La mia amica mi ha appena dato delle notizie cattive. = Bad. :mad: My friend has just given me some bad news.

    "Hey, my friend" kind of sounds awkward in English, so "Ciao, amico mio" may also in Italian. But you get the idea of usage. Hope it helps.

  8. BellaNova Member

    so how would you translate...hey my good looking friend? would it be like this...ciao dibell'aspetto amico mi????
  9. moodywop Banned

    Southern Italy
    Italian - Italy
    I'm afraid it doesn't sound right.

    Here everyone will choose to say it differently. I'd use "bellissimo", even though it's stronger, simply because I like the way it sounds here:

    Ciao, (mio) bellissimo amico
    Ciao, (mia) bellissima amica

    Unfortunately "bell'amico" is usually used ironically : ma che bell'amico che sei!

    "Bellissimo" can also suggest he/she is beautiful inside. Placing "bellissimo" after "amico" would get rid of the ambiguity but it wouldn't sound as good to me.
  10. lutinobird New Member

    English -American
    If I am female and addressing a male, wold I say amico mia? conversely would a man addressing a woman say amica mio? Or is the gender of the person being addressed the sole factor in determining this- meaning that whether or not I am female, I would address a male friend as "amico mio"?
  11. Tegs

    Tegs Mód ar líne

    English (Ireland)
    Hi Lutino, welcome to the forum! :)

    Could you give us the full English sentence and context please? For example, are you addressing a friend directly ("hey buddy/friend!") or are you using it in a phrase like "my friend Mary lives in New York".
  12. lutinobird New Member

    English -American
    Yes - thank you -and please allow me to better state the question.

    If I am a female addressing a male friend to say " Hello my friend" would I say ciao amico mia?

    Or- would the gender of both words be based solely upon the gender of the person I am addressing (regardless of my own gender) in which case I believe I would say ciao amico mio when addressing a male, and ciao amica mia when addressing a female?
  13. Amico mio, or simply amico, sounds a bit awkard in Italian. I can use it if I welcome a friend I am not seen since ages ago, but not in every day use. It sound at least patronising most of the times, if not hostile. There's a famous Italian politican which always start with amico mio when arguing with people from oppostite parties.
    Paisà or ue' paisà is still commonly used in South Italy when meeting a well known person, as well as cumpà (compare), in some aereas. I can't think at a single expression which is currently used in Italian to address a person with great familiarity. Maybe ciao bello, ue' bello, but I don't use it. I actually hate it. There must be of course a great variety of regional expressions, but none come to my mind as now.

    EDIT: oops I've just realized that I was answering to an very old post:eek:

    @lutinobird it is ciao amico mio if you address a man. The gender is based solely upon the gender of the receiving person. But still ciao amico mio sound a bit formal or awkard in Italian.
  14. lutinobird New Member

    English -American
    Thank you for your guidance. I should specify that I mean this to be in a written form not spoken aloud.
    My primary question is whether the gender of both of the words - amica/amico and mia/mio is determined solely by that of the person who I am addressing or also that of the speaker - in my case, I am female so I do not know if I should write "mia" because I am female or "mio" because I am addressing a male.
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013
  15. Tegs

    Tegs Mód ar líne

    English (Ireland)
    Amico mio for a male friend and amica mia for a female friend - the gender of the person you are addressing/talking about is the important one. The gender of the speaker doesn't come into it at all.

    Even in written form (such as an email or letter), this would sound strangely formal. I'd just say ciao bello (for a man) or ciao bella (for a girl). (Hope Chip won't hate me :D)
  16. it is always mio if you modify a male noun (remember in italian everything is genderized!). Both me (a boy:)) and you are supposed to say: il mio gatto, la mia macchina, il mio telefono, la mia sedia, ecc.

    By the way, I don't want to mislead you. There is absolutely nothing wrong in saying ciao amico mio to a friend, it is just something I woudn't say, but this may be a personal thing. I would more probably use it in written form, but of course the rules (mio, mia) remain the same.
  17. lutinobird New Member

    English -American
    @lutinobird it is ciao amico mio if you address a man. The gender is based solely upon the gender of the receiving person. But still ciao amico mio sound a bit formal or awkard in Italian.

    Thank you so much for the clarification. I am grateful to you!:)
  18. You are welcome :)

    I said before that amico mio and amico are often used in an actually unfriendly way.
    To be more precise, I'd say that this use, though less confrontational, is similar to the use of the word dude in English in:
    Dude, I won't wait for you if you don't hurry up or none of your business, dude

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