lesson about the days of the week in italian

Italian Days of the Week Lesson: Pronunciation, Writing, Grammar & Fun Proverbs About I Giorni Della Settimana

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Learning the days of the week is one of the first steps when studying any new language. Being able to say and understand the days allows you to discuss schedules, make plans, and get exposure to basic grammar principles. 

In Italian, the names of the days come directly from Latin origins, with influences from planets and Roman gods. With this guide, you’ll learn everything needed to master the days of the week in Italian. We’ll cover:

– Correct pronunciation and audio examples of the Italian day names
– The origins and meanings of each day name 
– Grammar rules like gender and plural forms
– Time expressions and prepositions used with the days of the week
– How to ask questions and have conversations about plans
– Fun exercises to practice your new skills

Whether you’re a beginner looking to memorize the basics or an advanced student wanting to improve, this comprehensive guide will take your understanding of the Italian days of the week to the next level. So let’s get started!



Italian Days of the Week Quick Overview

Here’s an overview of the days of the week in Italian – how to say them, spelling and pronunciation. We’ll look into each aspect and more later on in this article.

Day of the weekItalianSpellingPronunciation
MondayLunedìlu-ne-dìLoo-neh-dee
TuesdayMartedìmar-te-dìMar-teh-dee
WednesdayMercoledìmer-co-le-dìMer-co-leh-dee
ThursdayGiovedìgio-ve-dìJo-veh-dee
FridayVenerdìve-ner-dìVe-neh-dee
SaturdaySabatosa-ba-toSa-bah-toh
SundayDomenicado-me-ni-caDo-meh-nee-kah
Italian Days of the Week Overview



Pronunciation: How to Say the Days of the Week in Italian

In this section, you can listen to me saying the days of the week in Italian, one by one, from Monday to Sunday. Here’s how I suggest you do it.

Starting with Monday, listen to the audio below, and then refer back to the table above – look at the spelling and pronunciation guidelines – and practice along with me.

Lunedì

Martedì

Mercoledì

Giovedì

Venerdì

Sabato

Domenica


Italian Days of the Week Song

Here’s a funny song I found for you to practice along with. Lino, the puppet is singing it, and it starts at 1:49 should you wish to fast forward.

Days of the week song in Italian



Spelling: How to Write the Italian Days of the Week Correctly

Now that we know how to pronounce the days of the week in Italian, let’s learn how to write them correctly. Here’s how.

Lunedì

Martedì

Mercoledì

Giovedì

Venerdì

Sabato

Domenica

In Italian, while you can often omit accents placed on vowels in the middle of a word, it’s a must to use the accent on a vowel placed at the end of the word. When the vowel at the end is a, i, or u, the accent that is placed is always the same – called grave accent or “accento grave”.



Days of the Week in Latin & Where They Came From

To help you understand the Italian days’ names better, we should look at how they originated.

Like nearly anything in the Italian language, Lunedi and all the others are derived from Latin. So why don’t we look at the days of the week in Latin to get more context? Let’s do it.

Days of the Week in EnglishDays of the week in Latin
MondayLunae dies
TuesdayMartis dies
WednesdayMercuri dies
ThursdayLovis dies
FridayVeneris dies
SaturdaySaturni dies
SundaySolis dies > became Dominica
Days of the week in Latin


Dies which repeats every day is the Latin for giorno, which means day in Italian.

Did you notice that the names of the days resemble the names of the planets?

Indeed, the names from Tuesday to Saturday take after a different planet – 

Martis refers to Mars

Mercuri refers to Mercury

Lovis refers to Jupiter

Veneris refers to Venus

Saturni refers to Saturn

Monday was inspired by the moon rather than the planets, and Sunday was the day of the sun.

How fascinating is that?


origin of Italian days of the week

Who coined the days of the week in Italian?

The names of those days – except Saturday and Sunday – originate from the Babylonians and were later adopted by the Romans.

The Romans kept all the names the same, except for the weekend ones, which were given a religious name. Saturday became Sabato from the Jewish Sabbath, meaning a day of rest. They also changed Sunday from Solis Dies to Dominica, in honor of the Lord. That name was given by Constantine after becoming a Christian.

In the next section, we’ll look at how the Latin names were transformed into their Italian version.


Individual Week Days in Italian Derivation, Formation & Meaning

As I told you, looking into the Latin days of the week helped us understand the origin and meaning of the names of the weekdays in Italian.

Let’s now explore each one’s formation & meaning.

Monday in Italian aka Lunedi

Lunedì Derivation: Lunedi is derived from the Latin word “Lunae Dies”, meaning the day of the moon.

Lunedì Formation: Luna (meaning moon) + di (meaning day) became Lunedì.

Lunedì Meaning: Day of the Moon

Martedi – Tuesday in Italian

Martedì Derivation: Martedi derived from the Latin “Martis Dies”, meaning day of Mars.

Martedì Formation: Marte (meaning the planet Mars) + di (day in Italian) became Martedì.

Martedì Meaning: Day of Mars

Wednesday in Italian – Mercoledi

Mercoledì Derivation: Mercoledi derived from “Mercuri Dies”, meaning the day of Mercury.

Mercoledì Formation: Mercurio (Mercury) + di (day) became Mercoledì.

Mercoledì Meaning: Day of Mercury


martedi comes from planet Mars


Giovedi aka Thursday in Italian

Giovedì Derivation: Giovedi came from “Lovis Dies”, meaning the day of Jupiter.

Giovedì Formation: Giove (Jupiter) + di (day) formed Giovedì.

Giovedì Meaning: Day of Jupiter

Friday in Italian – Venerdì

Venerdì Derivation: Venerdi came from “Veneris Dies”, meaning the day of Venus.

Venerdì Formation: Venere (Venus) + di (day) formed the word Venerdì.

Venerdì Meaning: Day of Venus

Sabato – Saturday in Italian

I already answered the question: “How do you say Saturday in Italian?”, but in case you missed it, it’s Sabato.

Sabato Derivation: Sabato came from the Jewish “Shabbat”, meaning to stop and rest.

Sabato Formation: Shabbat translated to Latin is Sabbatum, so it became Sabato in Italian.

Sabato Meaning: Day of rest (giorno di riposo in Italian).

Sunday in Italian aka Domenica

Domenica Derivation: Domenica comes from the Latin “Dominica”, meaning day of the Lord (Dominus in Latin).

Domenica Formation: Dominica was turned into the Italian word Domenica.

Domenica Meaning: Day of the Lord


Handy Vocabulary to Use When Speaking About the Days in Italian

I giorni della settimana

“I giorni della settimana” translates to the days of the week.

Let’s use that in a few sentences:

  1. I giorni della settimana sono 7. – The days of the week are 7.
  2. Sono in ferie i primi due giorni della prossima settimana. – I am on leave for the first two days of next week.
  3. Quanti giorni alla settimana lavori? – How many days of the week do you work?

Weekend in Italian

“Fine settimana” is how Italians refer to the weekend. That means the end (fine) of the week (settimana).

Here are a few examples:

  1. Che fai questo fine settimana? – What are you doing this weekend?
  2. Finalmente, è arrivato il fine settimana. – The weekend has finally arrived.
  3. Sei libero il prossimo fine settimana? – Are you free next weekend?

italians days of the week vocabulary


Giorni Settimanali, Giorni Feriali or Lavorativi vs Giorni Festivi

Giorni Settimanali – Week days (same as giorni della settimana)

Giorni Lavorativi – Working days

Giorni Feriali – Week days

Giorni Festivi – Holidays or Festive days

Let’s use them in a few sentences:

  1. I giorni settimanali sono Lunedì, Martedì, Mercoledì, Giovedì, Venerdì, Sabato, Domenica. – The days of the week are Monday, Tuesday, etc..
  2. I miei giorni lavorativi sono cinque alla settimana. – My working days are five a week.
  3. I giorni feriali includono anche il Sabato. – The weekdays also include Saturday.

Next week in Italian

To say next week in Italian we say “la prossima settimana”.

La – is the feminine article

Prossima – means next and is an adjective

Settimana – means week and is a noun

What we just did is called ‘analisi grammaticale’, which is breaking down a sentence or part of it, word by word.

Examples using la prossima settimana:

  1. Che tempo farà la prossima settimana? – How’s the weather looking for next week?
  2. Io non lavoro la prossima settimana. – I am not working next week.
  3. La prossima settimana papà parte per l’Irlanda. – Next week, dad leaves for Ireland.

Last week in Italian

La settimana scorsa or la scorsa settimana is the correct way to say last week in Italian.

La is the feminine article the

Settimana is the feminine noun meaning week

Scorsa is the adjective meaning last

PS: Can you see how the three words all end with the feminine ending a? Even the adjective takes on the particle a to become feminine. Just observe that for now; we will look into that another time.


Domani: Tomorrow in Italian

Domani means tomorrow in Italian. 

Sentences with Domani:

  1. Domani è un altro giorno. – Tomorrow is another day.
  2. A che ora finisci di lavorare domani? – At what time do you finish work tomorrow?
  3. Dove mi porti domani? – Where are you taking me tomorrow?

Yesterday in Italian

Ieri is the equivalent of yesterday in Italian.

Examples with Ieri:

  1. Cosa hai fatto ieri? – What did you do yesterday?
  2. Ieri ho fatto un panettone buonissimo. – Yesterday I made a delicious cake.
  3. Hai sentito Martina ieri? – Did you hear from Martina yesterday?

The day before yesterday

L’altro ieri is how you say the day before yesterday.

L’ is the article with the apostrophe because it precedes a vowel.

Altro means other and ieri means yesterday.

Examples with l’altro ieri:

  1. L’altro ieri ha piovuto molto qui da noi. – The day before yesterday rained a lot here.
  2. Cosa è successo l’altro ieri? – What happened the day before yesterday?
  3. Siamo tornati dalla Germania l’altro ieri. – We came back from Germany the day before yesterday.

The day after tomorrow

“Dopo domani” means the day after tomorrow in Italian.

Sentences with Dopo Domani:

  1. L’intervista è dopo domani. – The interview is the day after tomorrow.
  2. Dopo domani è Natale. – The day after tomorrow is Christmas.
  3. Partiamo dopo domani. – We leave the day after tomorrow.

The day before

“Il giorno prima” is how you say the day before in Italian.

Il Giorno Prima Examples:

  1. Il giorno prima di Natale è la Vigilia. – The day before Christmas is Christmas Eve.
  2. Cosa avete fatto il giorno prima di tornare? – What did you do the day before coming back?
  3. Ricordamene il giorno prima. – Remind me of it the day before.

The day after

“Il giorno dopo” is the Italian for the day after.

Sentences with Il Giorno Dopo:

  1. Cosa fate il giorno dopo il matrimonio? – What are you doing the day after the wedding?
  2. Il giorno dopo il mio compleanno andiamo al teatro. – The day after my birthday we are going to the theater.
  3. Come ti sei sentita il giorno dopo? – How did you feel the day after?

This.. Monday or this Sunday

Questo in Italian can be used to precede each day of the week when you want to say this + the day of the week.

Use Questo for all days except Sunday, as it’s the masculine form.

Use Questa, feminine, for Domenica (Sunday).

Questo & Questa Examples with the days of the week:

  1. Questo Sabato si sposa Maria. – Maria is getting married this Saturday.
  2. Cosa mangiamo questa domenica? – What are we eating this Sunday?
  3. Marco lavora di domenica. – Marco works on Sundays.

Next & Last in Italian

Prossimo is next in Italian

Scorso is last in the Italian

Examples with Prossimo & Scorso + Day of the Week:

  1. Martedì prossimo puoi prendere un giorno libero? – Can you take the day off next Tuesday?
  2. Che piani hai domenica prossima? – What plans do you have for next Sunday?
  3. Lunedì scorso non mi sentivo bene. – Last Monday I wasn’t feeling well.
  4. Domenica scorsa siamo andati in chiesa. – Last Sunday we went to church.

Beginning of the week

Inizio settimana is the right way to say beginning of the week in Italian.

Sentences with Inizio Settimana:

  1. Bisogna finire questo progetto entro il prossimo inizio settimana. – We need to finish this project at the beginning of next week.
  2. L’inizio settimana è sempre pesante per me. – The start of the week is always hard for me.
  3. Buon inizio settimana. – Happy Beginning of the week.

days of the week in italian lesson break
Admire beautiful Sicily while you take a well deserved break.



Grammar Rules To Help You Learn The Italian Days of the Week Correctly

Are the Days of the Week Feminine or Masculine?

Below you’ll find the gender of the days of the week in Italian. Masculine translates to maschile in Italian while feminine is femminile.

Lunedì – Masculine (maschile)

Martedì – Masculine

Mercoledì – Masculine

Giovedì – Masculine

Venerdì – Masculine

Sabato – Masculine

Domenica – Feminine (femminile)

Correct Articles & When to Use Them

The correct article depends on the gender of the word.

All masculine days of the week take the definite article il, whereas Sunday – the only feminine one – takes the feminine article la.

Il Lunedì

Il Martedì

Il Mercoledì

Il Giovedì

Il Venerdì

Il Sabato

La Domenica

When to use and when not to use the article?

Let’s look at these sentences.

  1. Lavori il Lunedì? – Do you work on Mondays? (on Mondays as in every Monday)
  2. Lavori Lunedì? – Do you work on Monday? (on Monday as in this Monday)
  1. La Domenica, mi piace andare al parco. – On Sundays, I like to go to the park.
  2. Domenica andiamo al parco? – Can we go to the park on Sunday?

The article is used when you want to refer to the day of the week in general, rather than a specific Monday – this Monday or next Monday.

When it comes to saying next Monday or last Sunday, in Italian, you can say it correctly both with and without the article. See the examples below.

  1. Martedì scorso siamo andati in banca. – Last Tuesday we went to the bank.
  2. Lo scorso Martedì ha piovuto. – Last Tuesday it rained.
  3. Lavori Giovedì prossimo? – Do you work next Thursday?
  4. Lavori il prossimo giovedì? – Do you work next Thursday?


Plural Form

Let’s say you want to say all Mondays, all Wednesdays, and all Sundays – in that case you need to use the plural form of the days of the week. Here’s how to say the days of the week in Italian in the plural.

SingularPlural
LunedìLunedì
MartedìMartedì
MercoledìMercoledì
GiovedìGiovedì
VenerdìVenerdì
SabatoSabati
DomenicaDomeniche
Plural Form of the Days of the Week in Italian

The days of the week in Italian from Monday to Friday remain unchanged when you use them in the plural. That’s because they already end in i, which is the common plural ending for masculine words.

Only Sabato and Sunday change the ending. Saturday takes the masculine plural ending – i, while Sunday takes the plural feminine ending – e.

Prepositions to Use with the Days of the Week in Italian

Whether you want to say on Mondays, from Tuesday, till Saturday, or between Monday and Sunday, you need to use a preposition or two. So here’s which ones to use in Italian and how.

Di – means on when it precedes a day of the week

Da – means from when it’s placed before a weekday

A – means to when used with a day of the week

Tra – can mean both between and in when used with the days of the week

Fra – another way to say tra but can also mean in when used with the days of the week

Let’s put these in action.

  1. Di Lunedì, lavoro solo il pomeriggio. – On Mondays, I work only in the afternoon.
  2. Franco sta lavorando dalle 2 alle 8 da Lunedì Sabato. – Franco is working from 2 till 8 from Monday to Saturday.
  3. Dovrebbe arrivare tra Giovedì e Sabato. – It should arrive between Thursday and Saturday.
  4. Fra due giorni è Sabato. – It’s Saturday in two days.

From example number 2 above you can understand that the prepositions da and a are used together in a sentence, to mean from .. to.

Whereas example 4 shows us that fra is used together with e to mean between .. and.


how to write the day of the week in Italian

How to Write the Date in Italian – Correct Order, Capitalization, Etc

In Italian, the most common order for writing the date is this – day, month, year.

That’s correct whether you have to write today this way – 17/11/23 or this way – Friday 17 November 2023 which translates to Venerdì 17 Novembre 2023.

Capital letters or small letters?

Unlike in English, in Italian, there’s no need to capitalize the days of the week. The only exception is when the day of the week is used as a proper noun, that is a person’s name. For example, my auntie’s name is Domenica.

Italian Days of the Week Abbreviations

Should you need to use the days of the week in short form, here’s how.

Giorno – g.

Giorni – gg.

Lunedì – lun.

Martedì – mar.

Mercoledì – mer.

Giovedì – gio.

Venerdì – ven.

Sabato – sab.

Domenica – dom.


Learn How to Ask “What Day Is It?” in Italian.

Knowing the days of the week in Italian it’s not enough. We absolutely can’t end this article without you knowing how to ask what day it is in Italian and how to respond to that question. So here you go.

Che giorno è? – What day is it?

Oggi è Sabato. – Today is Saturday.

Che giorno era ieri? – What day was it yesterday?

Ieri era Venerdì. – Yesterday was Friday.


Italian Proverbs & Idioms About the Days of the Week

Let’s practice some more while learning a little bit of Italian culture.

Non c’è sabato senza sole.

There’s no Saturday without sun.

Se piove di venerdì, piove sabato, domenica e lunedì.

If it rains on Friday, it also rains on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

Dio non paga il sabato.

God doesn’t pay on Saturday (referring to the fact that Saturday is considered a rest day).

Essere sempre in mezzo come il giovedì! 

Always in the middle like Thursday.

Chi ride il venerdì piange la domenica.

He who laughs on a Friday cries on Sunday.


days of the week in Italian quiz

Italian Days of the Week Quiz

Days of the Week Origins

Grammar and Usage

Time Expressions with Days

Asking and Answering about Days

Day Writing

Answers

  1. C) Lunedì
  2. B) Mars
  3. A) Shabbat
  4. B) Babylonian
  5. B) In honor of the Lord
  6. C) Di
  7. B) Tutte le Domeniche
  8. B) No
  9. A) Il
  10. B) Fra sabato andiamo al mare.
  11. B) Ieri
  12. A) Dopo domani
  13. A) A
  14. A) Che giorno è?
  15. B) Ieri era Mercoledì.
  16. B) Il prossimo Martedì
  17. B) Day, month, year
  18. A) mer.



Final Thoughts

With all this knowledge of Italian days of the week you’ll be able to talk about the days with all your friends and family, and help them learn them too! Remember improving your Italian language skills depends on how much you practice what you learn. 

So go ahead and use the days of the week in conversation when making plans with Italian friends, or whenever you need them. If you put your new knowledge to use for all your Italian lessons, by the time your next trip to Italy comes around, you’ll be speaking with the Italians without problems.

The key is continuously reinforcing the language by using the vocabulary in real-world practice. This will help solidify your knowledge of Italian and build your language skills over time.

Explore these next lessons:
1. The Complete Guide to Saying What in Italian (here)
2. 40+ Ways to Say Good Morning Like a True Italian (here)


Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the first day of the week in Italian?

It’s Monday, Lunedì,  according to international standards or Sunday, Domenica, according to the Church.

What’s the name for Sunday that replaced the pagan name in Italian?

Domenica is the Italian word for Sunday that replaced the pagan name Solis Dies.

What does domani mean?

Domani means “tomorrow” in Italian.

What is the meaning of ieri?  

Ieri means “yesterday” in Italian.

Why is Saturday called Sabato?

Saturday is called Sabato in Italian, which comes from the Jewish word “Shabbat” meaning day of rest. 

Are days of the week masculine or feminine in Italian?

In Italian, Monday through Saturday are masculine. Only Sunday (Domenica) is feminine.

Are days of the week plural in Italian?

Yes, the plural form of the days is used when referring to all Mondays, all Fridays, etc. The form remains the same except for Saturday (Sabati) and Sunday (Domeniche). 

What is the meaning of Lunedi?

Lunedi means “Monday” in Italian. It comes from the Latin “day of the moon.”

What day is venerdì in English?

Venerdì is Friday in English.

What language is martedì?

Martedì is Italian. It comes from the Latin “day of Mars.”

What is the meaning of Martedì?  

Martedì means “Tuesday” in Italian.

What language is Sabato?

Sabato is Italian. It comes from the Jewish word Shabbat.

What day is mercoledì in English? 

Mercoledì is Wednesday in English.

What does Felice Giovedì mean?

Felice Giovedì means “Happy Thursday” in Italian.

What is buon sabato?

Buon sabato means “Have a good Saturday” in Italian.

Is Domenica masculine or feminine in Italian?

Domenica is feminine in Italian. It’s the only feminine day of the week.

How do you pronounce Sunday in Italian?

Sunday is pronounced “doe-MEN-ee-ka” in Italian. The emphasis is on the second syllable.

How can I use the days of the week in Italian?

You can use the days of the week in Italian to talk about your schedule, make plans, and discuss when events happened. For example, “Lunedì vado al cinema” (On Monday I’m going to the movies).

Is it hard to learn the days of the week in Italian? 

No, the days of the week in Italian are not too difficult to learn. The names resemble the Latin origins. With practice, you’ll have them memorized quickly.

How do you pronounce the days of the week in Italian?

In Italian, the days Monday-Saturday have stress on the second to last syllable: lu-NE-dee, mar-TE-dee, etc. Sunday is doe-MEN-ee-ka.

Where do the names of the days in Italian originate from?  

The Italian day names come from Latin, which took the names from planets (Martedì for Mars) except for Monday (moon) and Sunday (Sun/Sole).

Should I also learn the months of the year while studying the days of the week in Italian?

I suggest you learn the months of the year once you have understood and memorised how to say and use the days of the week in Italian.

Do you use the definite article with the days of the week in Italian?

Yes, except for Sunday which uses the feminine article “la”, the other days take the masculine article “il”. For example, “il Lunedi”.

At what point should I learn the days of the week when studying Italian? 

The days of the week are basic vocabulary to learn near the beginning of studying Italian, since they allow you to discuss schedules.

What are any tips to help you learn the days?

Tips include listening to audio of native speakers, making flashcards, and practicing using the days in example sentences for context. Associating the Latin origins can help memorization.

How do you say weekday in Italian?

“Giorno feriale” is how you say weekday in Italian. The weekend is “fine settimana”. 

How can I memorize the days of the week in Italian?

Use mnemonics relating to the Latin origins, make visual charts, listen to audio recordings, drill flashcards, and practice using the days in sentences. Repeated exposure is key.

How do you say days of the week in Italian?

“Giorni della settimana” is how you say days of the week in Italian. The singular is “giorno della settimana”.

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