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Why does English only have one expression to describe affection for someone while Italian has three ?

Just "I love you" and that's it for everyone ?

Italian

"Ti Amo" for your loving partner or love interest

"Ti Voglio Bene" for your mom, dad and close friends

"Ti Adoro" for someone you really like but don't know personally, like a singer or actor etc

If an Italian says "Ti Amo/I love You" to his mother she will look at him and say "Wait what ?" lol

I'm talking about direct expressions, I know you can say "You mean a lot to me" or "I care about you" etc but these are sentences and not expressions.

Update:

Yeah! that is the literary translation but you don't say "I wish you well" to your mother but "I love you". That's the point. Ciao :)

6 Answers

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  • 9 months ago

    You don't mean 'expression'. We have lots of different expressions to describe all those different gradations of feeling. You mean 'single verbs', like 'love' and 'like' and 'adore'.

    Different languages have the vocabularies they need. I'm sure you know the old myth about how Eskimos have 90 words for 'snow'. While it's not true, they do have many more ways of describing the different stages of snow that we, in countries with far less experience of snow, simply don't need.

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  • Anonymous
    9 months ago

    You're confused signore.

    • John P
      Lv 7
      9 months agoReport

      You could ask the same about "save" in English. In most European languages there are separate words for "Jesus saves", and a paramedic saving lives, and for me saving money in a bank. All very different actions. On the other hand we have: royal; regal; kingly - most languages have only one word.

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  • Anonymous
    9 months ago

    Too bad English doesn't have phrases like "to like someone" "to adore someone" "to cherish someone" "to worship someone." or "to idolize someone." Perhaps a genius like you can invent them.

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  • Pontus
    Lv 7
    9 months ago

    Different languages are -- different. Obviously.

    Why do Italian and English lack respectful and humble honorifics, when Japanese has them?

    Why does Italian lack an emphatic aspect like English has (I do listen. I did listen). Etc.

    The bottom line is that English cares less about those different kinds of love than Italian does, for right, wrong, or indifferent. English and Italian made different choices. That's what languages do.

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  • 9 months ago

    Wrong. I wish you well (Ti Voglio Bene) and I adore you (Ti adoro). Only Ti amo is I love you.

    Ciao.

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  • Mark
    Lv 7
    9 months ago

    Because not all languages are the same. There are DOZENS of synonyms or near-synonyms in English that don't exist in other languages.

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