TOP 10 Italian Mistakes – #6 – MANGIARE

By Manu Venditti | Advanced

Oct 12

 

Italian Verbs: MANGIARE and when you might be using it incorrectly

You are probably very familiar with the verb MANGIARE. It means TO EAT, right?
It does indeed.

So how can you possibly be using it wrong?
Well, here is when (and it’s very easy to fix!).

It is INCORRECT to say: 
MANGIARE LA COLAZIONE (breakfast)
MANGIARE IL PRANZO (lunch)
MANGIARE LA CENA (dinner)

Yet, I hear from almost every English speaker speaking Italian.
And it makes sense, since in English we do say “to eat breakfast/lunch/dinner”.

This is, we don’t in Italian!

 


In Italian we do not use the verb MANGIARE for COLAZIONE, PRANZO and CENA.


So what’s the fix?

FOR BREAKFAST (la colazione) we use the verb FARE:
FARE COLAZIONE = to eat/have breakfast

For example:
MIO MARITO NON FA COLAZIONE LA MATTINA
My husband does not eat breakfast in the morning

FACCIAMO COLAZIONE INSIEME DOMANI?
Shall we have breakfast together tomorrow?

 

But hold on a minute, Manu…

If FARE COLAZIONE means to eat breakfast, what do you Italians say when they are making it, as in preparing it?
PREPARE LA COLAZIONE! 


FARE COLAZIONE is used to mean EAT/HAVE BREAKFAST.
PREPARARE LA COLAZIONE is used to make MAKE/PREPARE BREAKFAST. 


FOR LUNCH (il pranzo) we have a verb!
PRANZARE = to eat/have lunch

And, being a verb, you can use it in any tense you want!
OGGI PRANZO DA MARCO
Today I’m eating lunch at Marco’s

IERI HAI PRANZATO CON MARCO?
Did you have lunch with Marco yesterday?

Confusingly enough, if we are making lunch, as in preparing it, we’ll say FARE IL PRANZO or PREPARARE IL PRANZO.


The regular verb PRANZARE is used to mean EAT/HAVE LUNCH. 
FARE or PREPARARE IL PRANZO is used to mean MAKE/PREPARE LUNCH


FOR DINNER (la cena) we also have a verb!
CENARE = to eat/have dinner

Again, being a verb, you can use it in any tense you want!
OGGI CENO DA MARCO
Today I’m eating dinner at Marco’s

IERI HAI CENATO CON MARCO?
Did you have dinner with Marco yesterday?

If we are making dinner, as in preparing it, we’ll say FARE LA CENA or PREPARARELA CENA.

Buon appetito!

 

 

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