How do you say LOW in Italian?

Low in Italian


Basso is how you translate low into Italian.

OriginFrom the Latin word bassum, meaning “low,small”

Basso is also used to translate “small” when referring to height. It can also be used to describe someone’s height (“short“).


Low in Italian: Different forms

Like all other adjectives in Italian, basso needs to match the gender (masculine or feminine) and the number (singular or plural) of the noun.

rich man and poor man sitting on stacks of coins

Low in Italian: Examples

Il suo stipendio è troppo basso per mantenere la famiglia.
His salary is too low to support his family.

La donna parla a voce bassa.
The woman speaks in a low voice.

Mio fratello non studia quasi mai. Ha voti molto bassi.
My brother hardly ever studies. He has very low grades.

Queste sedie sono troppo basse.
These chairs are too low.

woman whispering to another woman

To translate “to turn down” or “to lower”, use abbassare.

Potresti abbassare il volume del televisore?
Could you turn down the volume of the TV?

Il cane abbassa la testa.
The dog lowers its head.

As we’ve already said, basso also translates “short” and “small” when referring to heights.

Michele è più basso di Giorgio.
Michele is shorter than Giorgio.

To describe a low level or low quality of something, such as a low food supply, use the adjective scarso.

Le provviste sono scarse. Dovremo razionarle.
Supplies are low. We will have to ration them.

blue bin full of wasted food

Low in Italian: Expressions

There are some common idiomatic expressions featuring the word for low in Italian. Among them, you can find…

  • tenere un basso profilo, to keep a low profile, to lay low
  • abbassare la cresta, to get off your high horse
  • cadere in basso, to go off the deep end
  • guardare dall’alto in basso, to look down on

For example, you can say…

La regina guardò il contadino dall’alto in basso.
The queen looked down on the farmer.

Abbassa la cresta, amico, perché non sei superiore a nessuno qui!
Take it down a notch, man, because you are not superior to any of the people here!

More free Italian resources

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