Italian expression of the day: ‘Di nuovo’

Italian expression of the day: 'Di nuovo'
Photo: Annie Spratt/Unsplash/Nicolas Raymond
This little word is worth looking at again.

Di nuovo literally means “of new” and we can use it to talk about things happening again or, of course, to talk about what’s new.

For example:

Cioè, cosa c’è di nuovo?

I mean, what’s new?

Allora ragazzi, facciamolo di nuovo.

Right guys, let’s do it again.

But don’t make the common mistake of assuming that di nuovo is the same as ancora. One of the many meanings of ancora is ‘again’:

Provaci ancora.
Try it again.

Grazie ancora!
Thanks again!

But, though it can be hard for non-Italians to distinguish, there is a difference in meaning.

The main difference is that ancora is often used to stress that something is continuously or still happening; that something started in the past and is still going on at present (or even in future).

Di nuovo means instead that something is being done anew or afresh – probably in a different way than before.

È pronto iniziare di nuovo

He’s ready to start anew

Il professore vuole parlarvi di nuovo.

The teacher wants to talk to you again.

And if you’re struggling with the Italian language, making friends here in Italy, or anything else?

Non ti preoccupare. Domani posiamo provare di nuovo

Don’t worry. We can try again tomorrow.


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