Meaning of DICE in Italian

How do you use the verb dice in Italian? What does it mean? How do you pronounce it?

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

boy yelling at his phone

How to use dice in Italian

What is dice?

Dice is a present tense conjugation of the verb dire, meaning to say. To be more precise, it’s the third-person present tense conjugation of dire, which is a highly irregular verb in Italian, translating to “he/she says”.

Let’s hear how it is pronounced.

Dice
He/she says

Its pronunciation is close to dee-cheh. If you have trouble pronouncing Italian sounds, refer to the Italian pronunciation guide.

Now, let’s see a couple of examples with dice in Italian, before taking a look at how to use the verb dire along with its other present tense conjugations as well.

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

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La mamma dice di non parlare con gli estranei.
Mom says not to talk to strangers.

Stefano dice spesso di voler andare a vivere a New York.
Stefano often says he wants to go and live in New York.

Il mio insegnante dice che sono un bravo studente.
My teacher says I’m a good student.

Non credere a quello che dice Elena. Racconta solo bugie.
Don’t believe what Elena says. She only tells lies.

Luca dice di avere sete.
Luke says he is thirsty.

very thirsty man begging for a glass of water

Now let’s see where dice in Italian comes from.


Use of dice in Italian

You likely already know that the indicativo presente (present tense) conjugation for the pronoun io appends the ending -o to the root of the verb, or stem (see note for further info).

What’s the stem of a verb?
Italian verbs in the infinitive end in -ARE, -ERE and -IRE.
Cut out this part and you will be left with the root verb.
Examples:
portare ➡️ port-
scendere ➡️ scend-
aprire ➡️ apr-
Italian verb endings for every tense are added to these root forms of the verb.

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Now, how would you conjugate the present tense of dire, “to say”?

Take away the infinitive ending -ere and add -o!

Dire… ➡️ D-… ➡️ Io do?

little girl giving a gift to a classmate

You will maybe be surprised to know that the correct conjugation is actually io dico. Io do actually means I give and it’s a conjugated form of the verb dare, to give.

This is because dire is an irregular verb. This is also why we will say dice in Italian, and never do.

That said, let’s see the present tense conjugation of dire along with its pronunciation.

Present tense conjugation for dire

iodico
tudici
lui, leidice
noidiciamo
voidite
lorodicono

For example, you could say…

Come si dice “gatto” in inglese?
How do you say “gatto” in English?

Io dico che sarebbe meglio non entrare.
I say it would be better not to go in.

Ma cosa dici? Io non ho mai rubato nulla dalla tua dispensa!
What are you talking about? I never stole anything from your pantry!

And that’s it, now you know how to use dice in Italian!


What next?

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

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