Romance languages: Similarities

Discussion in 'Other Languages' started by Alxmrphi, Apr 7, 2006.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English

    I want to know (from an English native point of view) the similarities between all the Romance languages, in particular French, Spanish, Italian and German.

    What do they all have in common, as I see some things that make me think "Is that how it works in this / that language", just basically, common traits of the Romance languages, in a sort of structural POV.
  2. Mutichou Senior Member

    France - French
    German isn't a Romance language.
    French, Spanish and Italian have many things in common: conjugations, grammar, vocabulary are similar.
  3. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    What type of language is German?
    I presumed because it had different genders for words (which is about all I know of the German language) that it was the same, the countries are all grouped together aswel, I thought that part of Europe did.
  4. Mutichou Senior Member

    France - French
    German is a Germanic language, like English. It has three grammatical genders, whereas Romance language have two genders (although latin had three).
  5. Whodunit

    Whodunit Senior Member

    Deutschland ~ Deutsch/Sächsisch
    German is a Germanic language like English, Danish, Islandic, Norwegian etc.
  6. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
  7. diegodbs

    diegodbs Senior Member

  8. Bienvenidos

    Bienvenidos Senior Member

    Romance languages all originate from Latin. One of the most noted similarities is the prefixes and suffixes:


    There are many more, as well.
  9. vince Senior Member

    Los Angeles, CA
    Here's my summary of common features

    when i mention a word, since each Romance dialect has its own spelling and pronunciation, I make up some "quasi-Latin" form to represent it. e.g. bono = good is buono in Italian, bueno in Spanish, bom in Portuguese, bon in French.

    Romance languages share a lot of vocabulary since they are all derived from Latin. Most of their words are Latin-derived or Latin-copied-from-Greek (e.g. television, geographia, sciencia)

    Romances languages usually have two genders, masculine and feminine. feminine generally ends with a, masculine with o. (French lost its final syllable, so it's harder to tell the gender)

    They got rid of grammatical noun cases that Latin has (German still has some, but not English). So a noun doesn't have a different ending depending on whether it's a subject, direct object, indirect object, possessive/possessor, instrument of some action, etc.

    Many Latin tenses have been simplified. Most Romance languages form the future tense by adding the verb "to have" ('habere') to the end of the infinitive

    e.g. I will love = amare + ai/o
    you will love = amare + as
    she will love = amare + a

    btw most verbs's infinitives have an r at or near the end that disappears during simple conjugations (not including future/conditional/etc)

    The further west you go, the more the verb "tenere" (to hold) supplants "habere" (to have). By the time you get to Portugal, tenere (local spelling & pronunciation is "ter") means "to have".

    Western dialects add "s" to the end to form plurals, eastern ones change the final vowel.

    Most dialects can omit the subject pronoun, but not French (because the last syllable of a Latin word is almost always lost)

    In simple phrases with one conjugated verb, object pronouns (me, te, etc) usually go right before the verb. Many Portuguese dialects do some weird stuff though.

    they usually have pronouns that look something like: jo tu el ela nos vos els elas, lui, etc

    most of the time adjectives go after the verb

    they usually have prepositions and other little words like "a " for "to / at" , "en" for in, "cum" for with, "i" for "and", "sen", for without, "de" for "of", etc

    most have two verbs for "to know": sabere and gnoscere: very confusing for English learners!
    in the west, there are two verbs for to be: stare and essere. very confusing for English learners
    in the west, there are two words for by/for: par and par-a. very confusing for English learners!
    in the east they say 'volere' for to want, in the west they say "querere"
    btw don't confuse with volare which means "to fly"

    Some dialects say magis for "more", others say "plus"
    e.g. más inteligente vs. plus intelligente

    some core words (most dialects have):

    di(ce)re: to say (some dialects lost the "ce" inside certain verbs)
    parlare: to speak (western dialects say fablare)
    fa(ce)re: to do/make (most languages don't have make/do distinction)
    some dialects say pero for but, some dialects say mas, watch out.
    se/si : reflexive
    si: if
    si: yes
    belo: beautiful
    grazias: thanks
    juven: young
    velo = old
    tuto: all
    bono = good, melor = better/best
    malo = bad, pior = worst
    (a)(qu)est: this
    podere: to be able to
    devere: to have to / must
    que : that
    qui: who/ that
    ja: already
    cosa: thing
    quando: when
    per que: why
    forte: strong
    non: no/ don't (french people also add the word "paso" (step) at the end of the negated verb for some reason)
    vivere: to live
    morire: to die
    legere: to read
    cadere: to fall (also tombare)
    como: how
    esperare: to hope/wait (atendere means to wait for in some dialects, but esperare still means "to hope")
    numbers (1-10): uno dox treys quatro sinco ses septo octo novo dex
    20-90: vinte trente quarenta cinquenta sesenta septanta octenta noventa
    100: cento 1000: mill
    venire: to come
    benevenito: welcome (literally: well + (past participle of) come)

    English people always mess up the Romance words for "hair" and "horse". The first usually has an e in it, the latter an a.

    reflexive is used with body parts:
    "Jo me lavo las mans" means "I wash my hands" (litterally: "i wash the hands to myself") from verb lavare- se (French sticks the reflexive pronoun in front of the infinitive: se laver)

    The verb "to go" is strange: there are three main forms, usually more than one exists in each dialect (!) but they are usually not interchangeable. The form to use depends on the person/tense/number/aspect of the verb:
    anda- va- and ir-
    e.g. French "je vais" uses the va form for "I go" but "I will go" is "J'irai"

    Watch out for the distinction between the perfective past tense and the imperfective past tense that English people can never get right.

    Some dialects still have the distinction between "i have gone" and "i went". some just say "i went", some always say "i have gone"
  10. jester.

    jester. Senior Member

    Aachen, Germany
    Germany -> German
    Careful! Romanian, which also is a romance language, has still got cases and distinctions in forms of nouns according to the grammatical case which is used, but it is a lot simpler than in old latin.
  11. parakseno

    parakseno Senior Member

    Romanian, Romania
    Romanian also has 3 genders: masculine, feminine and neuter. Another peculiar thing is the definite article which is added at the END of the word unlike most Romance languages.
    băiat (boy) - băiatul (the boy) (masculine)
    fată (girl) - fata (the girl) (feminine)
    cuvânt (word) - cuvântul (the word) (neuter)

    Because it evolved a bit separated from the other Romance languages (it is one of the few Eastern Romanic languages and certainly the one with the most speakers), it has some peculiarities to an Italian for example, but a Romanian can easily understand about 80% of an Italian text (don't know how about the other way around - guess I'll have to ask an Italian :D).
    Hope I'll have some more time later to get back on this. Wikipedia has quite a nice article on Romanian ( - hope it's allowed.
  12. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    First, that was an excellent summary! Bravo! :cool:

    Now, a few remarks:

    "By", "for", or "to". Don't forget "to".

    Or with "scivolare/voler", which means "to steal".

    Here I don't know what you mean... :confused:

    The object pronoun, more precisely (this is a trace of the dative case, I think).
  13. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Those prefixes and suffixes are from Latin and Greek. You will find them in English words, as well.
  14. jester.

    jester. Senior Member

    Aachen, Germany
    Germany -> German

    Hair = cheveux
    Horses = chevaux
  15. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Oh, of course! :eek:

    And in West Romance cabello/caballo.
  16. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    But in Italian..


    still quite similar in looks, but not in sound..
    I never thought this topic would be so interesting, vince (or anyone) can you explain this :

    "Watch out for the distinction between the perfective past tense and the imperfective past tense that English people can never get right."

    Thank you

    etc etc.....
  17. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    In Portuguese, it's also cavalo. But these are not big differences, phonetically. It's very common for the sounds p, b, v to transform into one another as a language evolves.
    Cabello/capelo/cheveu is from Latin capillus, and, according to the dictionary of the RAE, caballo/cavallo/cheval is from Latin caballus.

    Well, in English you have only one basic tense to talk about the past: I walked, I was, I sung, etc. This is called the simple past.
    In most Romance languages, there are two of them. For example, in Spanish there is andaba and anduve, era and fue, cantaba and canté. They are not synonymous, so this is a problem for English speakers.
  18. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    I thought it was the other way around, at least in Italian

    Passato prossimo (Past simple) is used to translate the past, but English had the simple past and the present perfect.

    I walked
    I have walked
    I sung
    I have sung
    I wrote
    I have written

    but in Italian, it's just avere/essere + past participle.
  19. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    I carefully slipped the weasel word "basic" into my previous post. ;)

    Yes, if you start counting compound verb forms like the present perfect, English has a few of those, too. In fact, I think English has more tenses than some Romance languages, if you count all the compounds.
    In any case, though, there is no English tense that is consistently good for translating Spanish cantaba, or Spanish canté, say. Sometimes, cantaba will mean "I sang", others "I was singing", others "I used to sing". Sometimes canté will mean "I sang", others "I have sung".
  20. jester.

    jester. Senior Member

    Aachen, Germany
    Germany -> German
    But this does not depend on the variety or lack of tenses but on the context.

    English has a simple past form and a compound past form, just as Spanish has (and it has also got some more) but the rules for the use of these tenses is completely different and actually not comparable (or at least partly).
  21. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    But Spanish has two 'simple pasts'!


    I sang
    I have sung


    he cantado
  22. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    So, refering back to the quote, what is it English natives have a problem with?
    Their simple past in translations.

    Italian doesn't have a simple past though? does it.

    Does "SIMPLE" past mean past tense in one word, in which I can see the past definate being simple past.

    This is confusing me now.
  23. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Going back to what Vince wrote:

    ...I don't think it makes a difference whether we're talking about simple or compound tenses. Either way, if you look at the list of English past tenses

    1. I sang
    2. I have sung

    and the list of Spanish past tenses:

    3. cantaba
    4. canté
    5. he cantado

    ...there is none in the first list which matches the ones in the second list completely, or vice-versa.

    P.S. I don't know what it's like for Italian, though...
  24. vince Senior Member

    Los Angeles, CA
    Some romance languages don't distinguish between he cantado and canté in that in some dialects they are always interchangeable, in others, only one can be used, ever, and in others they have the same distinction as in English, in that he cantado is for more recent events that have some connection to the present.

    e.g. I have sung and I sang is always J'ai chanté (literally: Yo he cantado)
    (Yo) canté exists in French (Je chantai), but no one says it anymore. It exists only in writing and when reciting a written piece.

    But I think cantaba (French: chantais) and canté/he cantado (Fr: j'ai chanté) are usually not interchangeable in that imperfective connotes a process, description, or a habitual action whereas the latter two are about events, actions, and interruptions.

    So Imperfect doesn't exist in Italian anymore? That would be really weird.
    So "i was having a nervous breakdown when I suddenly had an accident", both incidents of the verb "have" would be the same in Italian?

    i think he cantado is always I have sung
    but I sang can be either yo cantaba or yo he cantado

    English people usually can't distinguish between the two
  25. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    "I sang" may also be translated as je chantais.

    "When I was living in Paris, I saw the Eiffeil Tower every day."
    Quand j'habitais à Paris, je voyais la tour Eiffel tous les jours.
  26. vince Senior Member

    Los Angeles, CA
    Another interesting thing about Romance languages is that most Latin vocabulary is preserved, but some dialects prefer one word over another, up to the point of rendering the rejected term obsolete. But it still exists! Or sometimes, a common word changes meaning but it still exists

    For example, querere (to want) exists in French, but I believe it's an old word that means "to look for".
    Also, "mais" (but) exists in Spanish (mas), but it is rare because spanish prefers "pero" as the word for "but".
    entendere: means to understand, but in French it displaced odir (to hear) (which is the original form, still used in the western Romance dialects). But odir still exists in French (as ouïr), it's just that it's super-rare, used only in certain expressions.

    The word for today in most Romance languages, "hoge", survives in French (spelled/pronounced as "hui"), but they always say "the day of today (hui)" ( i think other romance dialects say this too sometimes but it's not obligatory). So you always hear aujourd'hui "au jour de hui" (literally: al dia de hoy or al giorno d'oggi), but never hui (hoy / oggi).

    likewise tenere has displaced habere to various degrees in the western romance languages.

    Another thing is that romance languages generally say "I have xx years" (jo ei xx anos) to say "I am xx years old". so you see english people saying stuff like "Je suis 15 ans vieux"/"Yo soy 15 años viejo", haha.

    Also, most romance languages have an expression like xamar-se (literally: to call oneself with se the reflexive) that they use to say "my name is"
    So you have "(jo) me xamo Paul" meaning "My name is Paul". With dialects that can leave out the pronoun, some English-speakers think "me xamo" means "my name", so they say "me xamo est Paul" (!!!) (literally: I call myself is Paul)
    e.g. You ask in a Romance dialect: "Como se xama?" (what's your name?)

    "Me llamo Paul <-- Me llamo es Paul" (Spanish)
    "Mi chiamo Paul <-- Mi chiamo è Paul" (Italian)
    "Me chamo Paul <-- Me chamo é Paul" (for Portuguese dialects that don't stick pronouns to the end of conjugated verbs)

    very funny whenever you hear english people say the phrases on the right.
  27. vince Senior Member

    Los Angeles, CA
    that's the imperfective though. I guess i should have clarified that when "i sang" has a perfective meaning, then it's always "j'ai chanté".

    In Spanish I think that would be:
    "Cuando (yo) vivía en Paris, (yo) veía la Torre Eiffel todos los días"

    What I'm saying is that English people often get confused in Romance dialects and often put
    "Quand j'ai habité"/"Cuando yo viví" and "j'ai vu"/"yo vi" in your example sentence.

    (technically to correspond with the Spanish, the above French example should have been "quand je vécus" and "je vis" but French people don't use the simple past anymore)
  28. Jhorer Brishti Senior Member

    United States/Bangladesh English/Bengali
    Querer in Spanish arose from a latin root that meant to question or to ask.

    I also think you'd say "Mi nombre es Paul" because "Me llamo es Paul" literally means "I call myself is Paul".As you can see it's grammatically incoherent..
  29. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Chicago, IL
    US English/Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    Italian does have an imperfect. What is not used much anymore, except in some dialects, is the simple past (passato remoto), the equivalent of the passé simple in French. That is, Italian coincides with French in that it basically uses the present perfect ("ho mangiato," Fr. "j'ai mangé") to express the simple past and the imperfect ("mangiavo," Fr. "je mangeais") otherwise. This differs from Spanish, in which the pretérito is still very much alive and used.
  30. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    I'm not sure where the idea of an imperfect not existing in Italian arose from, but I'm equally as shocked that someone said the passato remoto, but then I realised it's not the passato prossimo I got confused with.

    Does any past tense without a compound form (single word) qualify to be a simple past?

    - Mi chiamo Alex - okay, normally I wrote that with an "is" (è) until I was told the difference between "I call myself" and "My name is"
    Howcome in Spanish then, the equivilent to "is" (es) is used when expressing this statement.

    *Interested* - What is the pretérito ?
  31. jester.

    jester. Senior Member

    Aachen, Germany
    Germany -> German
    Because mi nombre is means literally: My name is whereas Me llamo is equivalent to mi chiamo or I call myself.

    The pretérito indefinifo is a simple past form which is used to describe perfective events, look at this sentence

    Cuando era jóven, tuve un accidente.

    When I was young (imperfective), I had an accident (perfective).

    I hope this has made things clearer for you.
  32. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    A tense constructed without an auxiliary verb is called a synthetic tense. ;)

    Some Romance languages have synthetic past tenses that are equivalent to the past perfect ("I had sung"), so the answer to your question in is "no", in general. (And then there are the subjunctives...)

    Different languages often have different traditions regarding grammatical terminology. Pretérito (preterite) is really just a word that means "past".

    Here's another "Romance" word I haven't seen anyone post yet, "no": usually something like "non", from Latin "non".
  33. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    My first statement...

    I call myself Alex
    Mi Chiamo Alex
    Me llamo Alex

    Italians don't say Mi Chiamo è Alex, so I was wondering why Spannairds say Me llamo es Alex?

    ..So this is pluperfect?
  34. jester.

    jester. Senior Member

    Aachen, Germany
    Germany -> German
    They do not say Me llamo es ...

    Read my answer from 14:12
  35. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    Hi sept, look at the dates of the posts:p
    Nobody has posted here in 3 and a half years, so you might not get a response from certain people (just letting you know)
  36. Nino83 Senior Member

    To clarify:

    Simple tenses:

    Completed actions in the past (perfective)
    I sang/sung (past simple)/Cantai (passato remoto)/Chantai (passé simple)/Canté (pretérito)/Cantei (préterito)

    Habitual actions in the past (imperfective)
    I used to sing (used to)/Cantavo (imperfetto)/Chantais (imparfait)/Cantaba (imperfecto)/Cantava (imperfeito)

    Compound tenses:

    Past actions with a connection to the present
    I've sung (present perfect)/Ho cantato (passato prossimo)/J'ai chanté (passé composé)/He cantado (préterito compuesto)/Cantei (preterito, because in Portuguese "tenho cantado", perfeito, is equal to "I've been singing". This is a particularity of Portuguese language)

    Actions completed before a past event
    I had sung (past perfect)/Ebbi cantato (trapassato remoto)/J'eus chanté (passé antérieur)/Hube cantado (préterito anterior)/no tense in Portuguese

    Habitual actions before a past event
    I used to sing (or I had sung, litterally I've used to sing)/Avevo cantato (piuccheperfetto)/J'avais chanté (plus-que-parfait)/Habia cantado (plusquamperfecto)/Cantara or Tinha cantado (mais-que-perfeito)

    So, in Italy and France we don't use "passato remoto/passé simple" and "trapassato remoto/passé anterieur" in spoken language (in southern Italy, especially in Sicily, we still use also "passato remoto" in spoken language).
    We employ this tenses only in writing or in historical commentary.

    Es. (historical commentary)
    Quando, nel 2008, Obama fu eletto presidente... (When in 2008 Omaba was elected President...)

    But we normally say: "Quattro anni fa sono andato a Londra in vacanza" ("Four years ago I've gone to London for a holiday" not "I went").

    Spanish people use present perfect and past simple in the same way English people do, but in Latin America they use past simple for all (completed actions or actions with a connection to the present).
    Portuguese use past simple for completed actions and actions with a connection to the present while their present perfect is equal to your present perfect continous.

    In the end, in all romance languages (Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese), there is the distinction (also in speaking) between past simple/present perfect (perfective) for completed actions in the past and imperfetto/piuccheperfetto (imperfective) for habitual actions in the past.

    The "piuccheperfetto/plus-que-parfait" is also used to denote anteriority (because "trapassato remoto/passé antérieur" is obsolete also in writing).

    Es. Quando sei arrivato avevo finito di studiare/Quand tu es arrivé j'avais fini d'étudier (When you arrived I had finished to study).

    No, vince. Italian still have this difference, so the first "have" is avevo (imperfetto) and the second ho avuto/ebbi (passato prossimo or, only in writing, passato remoto).

    If you have some question, ask me.


    past simple/passato remoto/passé simple/pretérito/préterito <---- obsolete in Italian and French speaking
    used to or past simple/imperfetto/imparfait/imperfecto/imperfeito

    present perfect/passato prossimo/passé composé/préterito compuesto/preterito
    past perfect/trapassato remoto/passé antérieur/préterito anterior/no tense <-- obsolete in Italian and French speaking
    used to or past perfect/piuccheperfetto or trapassato prossimo/plus-que-parfait/plusquamperfecto/mais-que-perfeito
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2013
  37. Guajara-Mirim Senior Member

    French and Spanish (castilian) are not the same languages. I'm sorry to say you that but if you give to a french a text written in spanish it will not understand a word. On the contrary, a french understands better italian because the verbs and the words are very similar.
  38. vampirodolce Member

    Northern Italy
    You are quite right, there is not a perfect match between the tenses in English and the Romance languages, beginners around here find it difficult to use the Simple past vs. Present Perfect, not to mention the continuous forms (I am visiting some friends) which, at least in Italian and French grammars, are not presented as tenses and sometimes don't even exist (It has been raining for days).

    Verbs change according to the grammatical tense, person and sometimes gender, while in English they usually don't:

    je parle, io parlo, I speak
    tu parles, tu parli, you speak
    il/elle parle, egli/ella parla, he/she/it speaks
    nous parlons, noi parliamo, we speak
    vous parlez, voi parlate, you speak
    ils/elles parlent, essi/esse parlano, they speak

    je suis allé (M) / allée (F), io sono andato (M) / andata (F)
    tu es allé (M) / allée (F), tu sei andato (M) / andata (F)
    il est allé (M) / elle est allée (F), egli è andato (M) / ella è andata (F)
    nous sommes allés (MM) / allées (FF), noi siamo andati (MM) / andate (FF)
    vous êtes allés (MM) / allées (FF), voi siete andati (MM) / andate (FF)
    ils sont allés (MM), elles sont allées (FF), essi sono andati (MM), esse sono andate (FF)

    In English it would be:

    I went / have gone (M or F)
    You went / have gone (M or F)
    He (M), she (F), it went / has gone
    We went / have gone (MM or FF)
    You went / have gone (MM or FF)
    They went / have gone (MM or FF)

    The same is true for the future, etc.:

    As mentioned above, Latin languages share a lot of vocabulary and the structure of the sentence is more or less the same. Spanish isn't more difficult to understand to Italian speakers than a strong regional accent or dialect; I have never opened a Spanish grammar or dictionary in my life, however I can understand a Spanish speaker especially if he or she speaks slowly.

    Other similarities IMHO include:
    -accent marks on letters to show where the stress goes: voilà, però.
    -accents can also show how a letter is pronounced: perché [per'ke], è [ɛ], mère, cinéma.
    -gender, as stated above, even for things:
    il mio amico (M) / mon ami (M), la mia amica (F) / mon amie (F), my friend (M or F)
    i miei amici (MM) / mes amis (MM), le mie amiche (FF), mes amies (FF), my friends (M or F)
    la maison (F), la casa (F), the house / le livre (M), il libro (M), the book
    les maisons (FF), le case (FF), the houses / les livres (MM), i libri (MM), the books.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2013
  39. Guajara-Mirim Senior Member

    Depende de la variante de castellano que habla, no creo que vas a entender a un caribeño u a un chileno.
  40. vampirodolce Member

    Northern Italy
    Beh mica ho detto che capisco tutto, ho detto che globalmente il senso lo dovrei intuire, cosi' come mi e' chiaro quello che hai scritto tu:

    -Depende de la variante de castellano que habla, no creo que vas a entender a un caribeño u a un chileno.
    -Dipende dalla variante di castigliano che parla, non credo che riesci a capire (vai a intendere) un caraibico o un cileno.

    Mi sembra che le frasi siano al 90% uguali.

    Last edited: Jul 17, 2013
  41. Nino83 Senior Member

    Estoy de acuerdo con vampirodolce y con los otros.
    Si veo la TVE comprendo, salvo pocas palabras, lo que están diciendo, bien que la fonética española sea muy diferente (β, ð, θ en vez de b, v, d, s, z).
    Estoy de acuerdo con ti en la lengua escrita. Comprendo muy bien el francés escrito (las palabras son muy similares) que el español pero por la fonética es más comprensible la lengua española (las vocales son cinco).
    Quando fui a Barcelona nos entendíamos hablando cada uno sua lengua.

    My message in Italian is:

    Sono d'accordo con vampirodolce e con gli altri.
    Se vedo la TVE comprendo, salvo poche parole, quello che stanno dicendo, benché la fonetica spagnola sia molto differente (β, ð, θ invece di b, v, d, s, z).
    Sono d'accordo con te sulla lingua scritta. Comprendo molto bene il francese scritto (le parole sono molto simili) dello spagnolo però per (quanto riguarda) la fonetica è più comprensibile la lingua spagnola (le vocali sono cinque).
    Quando sono andato a Barcelona ci intendavamo parlando ognuno la sua (o propria) lingua.

    Muy similares.

    Italian and French are more similar each others in vocabulary, grammar (as Spanish and Portuguese are) but Italian and Spanish are more similar in phonetics (French and Portuguese share some similarity but are phonetically different).

    Sometimes Spanish and Italian are more similar also in grammar, for example about gerund (verbal tense):

    Vado a casa correndo
    Voy a casa corriendo
    Je vais chez moi (à la maison) en courant
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2013
  42. Angelo di fuoco Senior Member

    Russian & German (GER) bilingual
    Pur consapevolissimo del rischio di passar per un cavillatore non posso non porre questa domanda: perché si dice che in italiano non venga piú usato il passato remoto nella lingua parlata quando la Toscana e il Mezzogiorno se ne servono eccome nel linguaggio quotidiano, e, nel linguaggio mediamente colto anche nelle altre regioni? Insomma, non si tratta d'una parte trascurabile degl'italiani.

    E non è che il trapassato remoto o il passé antérieur s'usino tuttora perlomeno nel linguaggio scritto?
  43. Guajara-Mirim Senior Member

    Questo è facile tutta persona che ha una lingua latina come madre lingua può capirlo. Al contrario, ci sono tanti dialetti di 'castigliano' parlati in America che dubito che Lei va a intendere tutto (già che gli Spanici hanno alcune difficoltà in capirsi).
  44. Peter94 Member

    /s/ is never pronounced [θ], unless the speaker has a ceceo - but even then the outcome is not exactly [θ], but something more like a fronted apical denti-alveolar [s̪+], which I'd basically describe as a "kind of lisped /s/".

    /s/ in Northern Spain (and parts of Colombia) has a quality of fronted apical post-alveolar [ʃ̺+]. I've heard Paolo Cozza using a similar sound, and he's from Milan. It's quite funny, because since Italian contrasts /s/ and /ʃ/ such realization brings them close together. I wouldn't be surprised if a merger occurred at some point in the future.

    And of course, <z> is pronounced /θ/ only in dialects that have distinción, which would be only many European ones, including Standard European Spanish. In others it merges with /s/.

    [β ð ɣ] (fricatives or approximants) are allophones of /b d g/ (there's no phonemic /v/ in any Standard Spanish varieties) in most positions, except after a pause, a nasal consonant (/m/ and /n/), and in case of /d/ after a lateral consonant (/l/). So they're not the only realizations of these letters, just predominant allophones of /b d g/.

    It's also worth mentioning that Colombian Spanish has a less extensive lenition than other dialects - /b d g/ before consonants are pronounced [b d g].
  45. Nino83 Senior Member

    Angelo di fuoco, innanzitutto complimenti per il tuo italiano.
    E' vero che nella parlata giornalistica ed in televisione il passato remoto venga utilizzato ma la sua funzione può essere rimpiazzata in qualsiasi registro, anche il più formale, dal passato prossimo. Quando persino all'esame scritto del concorso in magistratura non viene corretto l'utilizzo del passato prossimo anche per eventi molto antichi, si può iniziare a parlare di un vero e proprio processo di desuetudine.
    Anche nel meridione (per inciso, sono siciliano, regione nella quale più di tutte si utilizza il passato remoto) il passato remoto è ormai utilizzato (nel parlato) per lo più da persone con più di quarant'anni di età.
    Personalmente lo utilizzo nella maggioranza dei casi solo quando parlo in siciliano mentre il passato prossimo predomina nell'italiano. Nello scritto è relegato, per lo più, alla narrazione storica.
    Il trapassato remoto è rarissimo (quasi un relitto storico) anche nello scritto (poichè, in italiano, per descrivere un fatto temporalmente anteriore ad un altro nel passato si usa per lo più il piuccheperfetto congiuntivo o, se la congiunzione lo permette, il trapassato prossimo dell'indicativo).
    Es. Non appena arrivai se n'era già andato --> passato remoto e trapassato prossimo dell'indicativo

    Guarda qui
    Una biografia, linguaggio colto e scritto nonché resoconto storico. Il passato remoto è presente ma non vi è traccia del trapassato remoto.
    Nelle poche frasi in cui sarebbe stato possibile utilizzare il trapassato remoto viene usato il trapassato prossimo.
    "(nel 1924 aveva suscitato scalpore la sua pubblica richiesta di iscrizione al partito fascista), nel 1934 gli era stato conferito il premio Nobel per la letteratura. Nel 1949 la Villa del Caos dove era nato fu dichiarata monumento nazionale."
    La Treccani è la più autorevole enciclopedia italiana.

    Everyone can search on google "ebbe fatto" "fu andato" "fu stato" "ebbe detto". The only pages everyone will find tell about conjugation of verbs. Rarely you can find this tense (trapassato remoto) on newspaper.

    That's right, Peter94. I was speaking about Standard European Spanish. For me is easier to understand Latin American pronunciation, that's similar to the Italian one, but (I was saying that) I understand TVE pronunciation too.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2013
  46. vampirodolce Member

    Northern Italy
    Complimenti per l'italiano. Si' e' vero, al Sud il passato remoto ha ancora una certa diffusione, principalmente per l'influenza che i dialetti hanno sulla parlata locale. Io sono del Nord e nel parlato non lo uso praticamente mai, ricordo che si usava spesso a scuola durante le interrogazioni di storia e piu' in generale lo troverai ancora nello scritto un po' piu' formale e controllato (es. libri di storia).

    Fra l'altro il passato remoto e' pieno di verbi irregolari, quindi e' meno intuitivo del passato prossimo e credo che questo sia uno dei motivi del suo declino.

    Non sentirai nessuno dire:
    In una pagina di Wikipedia leggo invece:
    qui si usa il passato remoto, principalmente perche' come dicevo la tipologia del testo lo rende piu' adatto. Tuttavia, nel parlato di tutti i giorni, sentirai qualcosa del tipo:
    Diciamo che imparare il passato remoto per uno studente straniero e' un nice to have ma non e' un argomento cosi' indispensabile.

    Per quanto riguarda il trapassato remoto, ho preso come esempio questa frase:
    Anche questa la troverai esclusivamente nelle narrazioni scritte e per di piu' molto di rado, magari in qualche romanzo ambientato chissa' quando... Se qualcuno mi parla cosi', la prima cosa che penso e': 'Ma da dove viene questo, dall'800?'.

    In altre parole (ma e' solo una mia opinione) qualche volta bisogna privilegiare un uso un po' piu' attuale della lingua, l'obiettivo dovrebbe essere parlare un buon italiano, corretto, ma non troppo da libro. La frase sopra potrebbe diventare:
    e suoneresti molto piu' sciolto.

    Spero di essere stato chiaro.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2013
  47. Angelo di fuoco Senior Member

    Russian & German (GER) bilingual
    Grazie per i complimenti.
    Nell'articolo dell'enciclopedia Treccani nelle frasi che hai citato non ci vuole proprio il trapassato remoto, non c'è nessuna congiunzione né locuzione avverbiale che lo richieda. Nelle prime due frasi il trapassato prossimo lo si potrebbe sostituire col passato remoto, nell'ultima ("nel 1949...) ci vuole proprio il trapassato prossimo.
    Io, dal mio canto, ho sentito il passato remoto usato spontaneamente da persone che s'erano appena maturate... (ma poi provvenivano dalla Toscana).
    La mia insegnante d'italiano all'università disse in un'occasione che il passato remoto lo s'uccideva proprio a forza di ripetere che non veniva piú usato.
  48. Angelo di fuoco Senior Member

    Russian & German (GER) bilingual
    Non so, ma questa mi suona proprio artificiale. Da conservatore che sono non userei il passato prossimo, ma metterei il passato remoto in entrambe...
  49. Nino83 Senior Member

    Si è vero, non c'è alcuna congiunzione che indichi un evento appena concluso.
    In generale, comunque, il trapassato remoto è relegato per lo più ai romanzi.
    Se si ha l'intenzione di imparare la lingua italiana o francese per leggere le opere letterarie (presenti e passate), allora è importante studiare anche questi due tempi (oltre al subjonctif imparfait e plus-que-parfait).
    Se l'intenzione è, invece, quella di capire e farsi comprendere o di leggere quotidiani e riviste, la conoscenza di questi due tempi è pressoché facoltativa (al contrario di quanto avviene nello spagnolo e nel portoghese).
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2013
  50. 涼宮

    涼宮 Senior Member

    Sbaeneg/Castellano (Venezuela)
    Sorry, but that's false. There are certain regions in Latin America where the use of the present perfect is almost non-existent, but the entire Latin America uses canté and he cantado pretty much like English both in the spoken language and in the written language. Spaniards overuse the present perfect as opposed to latinos. For example if you just saw your friend Pedro in the bakery a Spaniard would utter ''He visto a Pedro en la panadería'' whereas a latino would say ''vi a Pedro en la panadería''. For a Latino American ''he visto a Pedro en la panadería'' means ''I have seen several times Pedro in the bakery for some time up now''. ¿Almorzaste? - No, no he almozardo. ¿Has visto la peli Shrek? - No, no la he visto. Latino Americans say it like that. All tenses in Spanish are very used in the spoken and written form in Latino America except for the future subjunctive :).
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page