What is a Preposition in the Italian Language?

What is a Preposition in the Italian Language? A preposition is a word usually followed by a noun or a pronoun.

Prepositions show how people and things relate to the rest of the sentence: the relationship among individual words, phrases, actions, places, and times.

For example:

Anna è a casa (Anna is at home).

A proposition in the Italian Language may have many different meanings so to learn how to use it properly you need a lot of language practice.

Choosing one preposition over another leads you to say different things, such as:

Sto parlando con te (I’m speaking to you)


Sto parlando di te (I’m speaking about you.)

Using Italian prepositions

Prepositions are difficult to master in any language because their use is idiomatic in many cases.

The basic rule, therefore, is to practice a lot.

Prepositions are used in front of nouns and pronouns to show the relationship between the noun or pronoun and the rest of the sentence.


Andiamo a Roma (We’re going to Rome)
Vieni con me (Come with me)

But what is a Preposition in the Italian Language? In Italian prepositions always go in front of another word and never at the end of a question or part of a sentence.

Con chi sei venuto? (Who did you come with?)

Which Italian Preposition you must Use

Italian has eight basic prepositions.

They’re listed in order of most frequently used.

  • di
  • a
  • da
  • in
  • con
  • su
  • per
  • fra/tra

The preposition used in Italian may not be what you expect, for example, the Italian preposition in is used for both the following:

I miei genitori sono in Italia (My parents are in Italy)
I miei genitori vanno in Italia (My parents are going to Italy)

You sometimes need to use a preposition in Italian when there is no preposition in English.

For examples:

Hai bisogno di qualcosa? (Do you need anything?)
Chiedi a Lidia cosa vuole (Ask Lidia what she wants)

TIP: When you look up a verb in the dictionary, take note of any proposition that is shown with the translation.


Congratularsi con (to congratulate)

Dire qualcosa a qualcuno (to tell someone something)

Most Frequently used Italian Prepositions

The most frequently used Italian prepositions are:

di – a – da – in

They all have a general equivalent in English, but each can be used in ways that do not correspond to the standard translation.

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