How to use NESSUNO in Italian

Nessuno in Italian

Nessuno is a pronoun and an adjective that can be translated into English as “anyone”, “no one”, “nobody” “none” and “any/no”. It’s also found in the forms nessun (alternative masculine form) and nessuna (feminine form).

OriginFrom the Latin expression ne ipse unus, meaning “not even one”

Anyone, no one, nobody, any, no, none

Nessuno in Italian: Examples

Nessuno è venuto alla festa.
Nobody came to the party

Non ho nessuna voglia di uscire oggi.
I have no desire to go out today.

Non c’è nessuno a casa.
There is no one at home.

Nessuno sa dove sia andato Marco.
Nobody knows where Marco went.

Nessuna delle risposte è corretta.
None of the answers are correct.

woman eating alone at home

Nessuno in Italian: How to use it

We’ve said that nessuno in Italian is a pronoun and an adjective with many different translations, such as “no one”, “anybody” and “none”. In negative English sentences, it translates any or no.

You use nessuna in front of feminine singular nouns and nessun in front of nouns that begin:

  • in front of vowels
  • a consonant other than gn, ps, x, z or s + consonant

Nessuno studente ha completato il compito.
No student completed the assignment.

Questo libro non ha nessuna illustrazione.
This book doesn’t have any illustrations.

Nessun gatto è mai riuscito a catturare quel topo.
No cat has ever been able to catch that mouse.

Nessuna can be shortened to nessun’, with an apostrophe, in front of feminine nouns that begin with a vowel.

Non ho avuto nessun’occasione per incontrare Giorgia.
I had no opportunity to meet Giorgia.

Non ho ricevuto nessun’email da ieri mattina.
I haven’t received any emails since yesterday morning.

email with @ letter

When nessuno is the first element of the sentence, you don’t have to use non (there is no double negative). Otherwise, start the sentence with non, add the verb, and then add nessuno at the end. The meaning of the sentence doesn’t change: it’s a matter of preference.

Nessuno ha lavato i piatti.
No one did the dishes.

Non ha lavato i piatti nessuno.
No one did the dishes.

Nessuno in Italian: Expressions

There are a number of common idiomatic expressions featuring nessuno in Italian. These are…

  • terra di nessuno (no man’s land)
  • figli di nessuno (nobody’s children, orphans)
  • un po’ per uno non fa male a nessuno (it doesn’t hurt anyone for each person to do his part)
  • nessuno è perfetto (nobody’s perfect)

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