How do you say GHOST in Italian?

How exactly do you say ghost in Italian?

In this lesson, we will take a look at the different words you can use to talk about ghosts in Italian. Read on to learn them all!

Let’s get started! Iniziamo!

How do you say ghost in Italian?


Fantasma is how you say ghost in Italian. It is easy to remember it if you associate it with phantom.


a haunted cave with ghosts

It is a masculine noun and it begins with the f consonant, so it uses the articles il (definite, the ghost), and un (indefinite, a ghost).

Un fantasma
A ghost

Dei fantasmi
Some ghosts

Il fantasma
The ghost

I fantasmi
The ghosts

Title: Italian All-in-One For Dummies
Language: English / Italian
Publisher: For Dummies
Pages: 672

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Its pronunciation is similar to fahn-TAHS-mah and it comes from the Greek word phántasma, which comes from phaínō, “monster”. Make sure the final -a has a pure sound, because Italian vowel sounds are clean.

For example, you could say…

I fantasmi non esistono.
Ghosts don’t exist.

Hai mai visto un fantasma?
Have you ever seen a ghost?

La villa sulla collina è infestata dai fantasmi.
The mansion on the hill is haunted by ghosts.

Si dice che ci siano dei fantasmi in quel cimitero.
It is said that there are ghosts in that graveyard.

a tomb and some bats

Idiomatic expressions with ghost in Italian

There are a number of idiomatic expressions featuring the word for ghost in Italian. For example:

Arto fantasma
Phantom limb

L’arto fantasma è una strana sensazione.
The phantom limb is a strange sensation.

Governo fantasma
A government that is not officially recognized, a shadow government

Un governo fantasma è illegale.
A shadow government is illegal.

Città fantasma
Ghost town

Craco è una città fantasma.
Craco is a ghost town.

a ghost town at night

There is also the expression essere il fantasma di sé stesso, to be the shadow of one’s self.

Dopo la lunga malattia, Michele è diventato il fantasma di sé stesso.
After the long illness, Michele became the ghost of himself.

We also describe people as being ghosts when they are exceptionally pale with the expression sembrare un fantasma, to look like a ghost.

Perché sei così pallido? Sembri un fantasma!
Why are you so pale? You look like a ghost!

And that’s the end of our lesson on how to say ghost in Italian!

What next?

Now that you’ve seen how to say ghost in Italian, you might want to keep learning Italian online with these free Italian resources:

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