How do you use the word sempre 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!
Sempre in Italian
What is sempre?
Sempre is an adverb that can be translated into English as “always” or “still”.
Its pronunciation is close to sehm-preh. If you have trouble pronouncing Italian sounds, refer to the Italian pronunciation guide.
Now, let’s see a couple of example sentences with sempre in Italian, before taking a look at how to use this word.
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Language: English / Italian
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Luca è sempre puntuale agli appuntamenti.
Luca is always on time for his appointments.
Mia sorella fa sempre colazione alle 8.
My sister always has breakfast at 8 o’clock.
Rovini sempre tutto!
You always spoil everything!
Ho sempre voluto diventare insegnante.
I have always wanted to become a teacher.
Tom ha sempre voluto entrare nell’aviazione.
Tom always wanted to join the air force.
Matteo si lamenta sempre.
Matteo is always complaining.
Now let’s see what the use of sempre in Italian is.
Use of sempre in Italian
We’ve said that sempre in Italian is an adverb that translates to the English adverb “always” or “still”.
Differently from English, it’s always placed after a lone verb. Like English, it’s placed after the auxiliary verb in compound tenses.
Marco arriva sempre in ritardo.
Marco always arrives late.
Literally: Marco arrives always late.
Ho sempre letto almeno due libri al mese.
I’ve always read at least two books a month.
(same order as English)
Sempre can also translate forever when it’s preceded by the preposition per, as in…
Le fotografie sbiadiranno, ma i ricordi rimarranno per sempre.
The photographs will fade, but the memories will remain forever.
Ti amerò per sempre.
I will love you forever.
Sempre can also act as a synonym for ancora, which can mean “still” or “again”. In our case, it’s a synonym for “still”. For example, you could say…
Lavorate sempre alla Ferrari?
Do you still work at Ferrari?
Mia zia vive sempre in fondo alla via.
My aunt still lives down the street.
You can also use sempre in Italian along with comparative adjectives such as meglio, peggio, più and meno to translate more and more, less and less etc.
Prevenire è sempre meglio che curare.
Prevention is always better than cure.
In questa zona piove sempre meno.
It rains less and less in this area.
Expressions with sempre in Italian
There are a number of common expressions featuring sempre in Italian. These are…
- come sempre (as always)
- essere sempre all’erta (to always be alert)
- essere sempre in movimento (to always be moving)
- la mamma dei cretini è sempre incinta (stupidity breeds stupidity)
- avere sempre l’ultima parola (to always have the last word)
- l’erba del vicino è sempre più verde (the grass is always greener on the other side)
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And that’s it, now you know how to use sempre in Italian!
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