Using INTANTO in Italian

How do you use the word intanto in Italian? What does it mean? How do you pronounce it?

In this lesson, we will look at how to use this word with the help of many audio recordings and example sentences. Read on to learn everything you need to know!

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Intanto in Italian

What is intanto?

Intanto is an adverb of time that can be translated into English as “in the meantime” or “meanwhile”.

In the meantime, meanwhile

Its pronunciation is close to een-tahn-toh. If you have trouble pronouncing Italian sounds, check out the Italian pronunciation guide.

Now, let’s see some example sentences with intanto in Italian, before we take a look at how to use this word in other contexts as well.

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

Learn to speak Italian like a native? Easy.
Italian All-in-One For Dummies appeals to those readers looking for a comprehensive, all-encompassing guide to mastering the Italian language. It contains content from all For Dummies Italian language instruction titles, including Italian For Dummies, Intermediate Italian For Dummies, Italian Verbs For Dummies, Italian Phrases For Dummies, Italian Grammar For Dummies, and Italian For Dummies Audio Set.

Io esco a fare spesa. Tu intanto puoi mangiare uno snack.
I’m going out to buy groceries. You can have a snack in the meantime.

Luca tornerà tra un paio d’ore. Intanto prepariamo la cena.
Luca will be back in a couple of hours. In the meantime, let’s prepare dinner.

Devo fare una telefonata. Intanto chiama un taxi.
I have to make a phone call. Call a taxi in the meantime.

woman taking a taxi

Now let’s see how to use intanto in Italian.

Using intanto in Italian

You use intanto in Italian to talk about actions that are happening at the same time as others.

Io preparo la cena. Tu, intanto, porta fuori il cane.
I will prepare dinner. You, meanwhile, take the dog out.

Two actions are needed to complete the sentence.

La mamma era impegnata a lavorare a maglia. Intanto papà faceva un pisolino accanto al fuoco.
Mom was busy knitting. In the meantime, dad was taking a nap by the fire.

Don’t confuse intanto with tanto, which means much! It’s true that this word used to be written as two different words, in tanto, but that spelling is no longer used.

The expression intanto che translates to “while” and is a synonym for mentre.

Intanto che tu fai i compiti, io pulirò il pavimento.
While you do your homework, I will clean the floor.

Siediti un po’ sulla poltrona intanto che io sistemo la cucina.
Sit down in the armchair for a bit while I tidy up the kitchen.

Mio padre si addormenta spesso intanto che guarda la TV.
My father often falls asleep while watching TV.

woman trying to wake up her sleeping husband

Intanto in Italian can also translate as yet when you are introducing a counter-argument to what you’ve just said.

Marco dice di avere mal di stomaco, ma intanto ha appena mangiato mezza tavoletta di cioccolato.
Marco says he has a stomachache, but in the meantime he has just eaten half a chocolate bar.

And that’s the end of our lesson on how to use intanto in Italian!

What next?

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