To catch fire in Italian

How do you translate the expression to catch fire in Italian?

In this lesson, we’ll take a look at this very expression, also known as collocation, and we will even talk about what kind of different fires there are in Italian and what words you can use to describe them.

Let’s get started! Iniziamo!

To catch fire in Italian

First of all, let’s translate to catch fire in Italian.

Prendere fuoco
To catch fire

prendere fuoco - to catch fire in italian - man lighting up a fire with wood pieces

To catch fire in Italian – Let’s break it down!

Prendere fuoco could literally be translated as to take fire.

To take

Il fuoco
The fire

Le case di legno prendono fuoco facilmente.
Wooden houses catch fire easily.

to catch fire in italian - wooden house burning

Prendere is a verb of the second -ere group. Its indicativo presente conjugation is as follows.

lui, leiprende

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Language: English / Italian
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Prendere is a very versatile verb in Italian and you will find it in other collocations with “to catch”. Here are a few:

Prendere l’autobus
To catch the bus

Prendere l’influenza
To catch the flu

Prendere un raffreddore
To catch a cold

Prendere un ladro
To catch a thief

For example, you could say:

Al mattino prendo sempre l’autobus per andare a scuola.
In the morning I always take the bus to go to school.

Un mio collega ha preso l’influenza. Ha contagiato altre due persone.
A colleague of mine had the flu. He infected two other people.

La polizia non è ancora riuscita a prendere il ladro.
The police have not yet been able to catch the thief.

woman in bed with the flu - how do you say to catch fire in italian


We said that the translation for to catch fire in Italian is prendere fuoco. Fuoco is a masculine noun. It is often followed by certain adjectives.

Un fuoco
A fire

Dei fuochi
Some fires

Il fuoco
The fire

I fuochi
The fires

a bonfire

Il fuoco è acceso nel camino.
The fire is lit in the fireplace.

I ragazzi hanno acceso un bel fuoco e hanno arrostito i marshmallow.
The boys made a nice fire and roasted the marshmallows.

There’s more than one kind of fire in Italian. When we talk about a fire that sparks on its own, we use incendio instead of fuoco.

Incendio gigantesco
Huge fire

Incendio devastante
Devastating fire

Incendio boschivo
Forest fire

Incendio in cucina
Kitchen fire

Incendio doloso


falò - man in front of a bonfire

For example, you could say…

Un incendio devastante ha bruciato ettari di foresta.
A devastating fire has burned acres of forest.

Le autorità sospettano che l’incendio sia di natura dolosa.
The authorities suspect that the fire was malicious.

Si vede una colonna di fumo. Qualcuno deve avere acceso un falò.
I can see a column of smoke. Someone must have lit a bonfire.

To catch fire in Italian – Examples

Le case di legno prendono fuoco molto facilmente.
Wooden houses catch fire very easily.

La padella ha preso fuoco mentre stavo friggendo alcune strisce di pancetta.
The pan caught fire while I was frying some strips of bacon.

Il pollaio ha preso fuoco, ma le galline sono riuscite a scappare.
The henhouse caught fire, but the chickens managed to escape.

Cosa facciamo se l’edificio prende fuoco?
What can we do if the building catches fire?

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