How do you say SHORT in Italian?

How exactly do you say short in Italian?

In this lesson, we will take a look at the different words you can use to talk about being short in Italian. Read on to learn all you need to know!

Corto, basso… breve?

Let’s get started! Iniziamo!

Short in Italian


Corto is how you translate short in Italian when you are talking about clothes, hair, and general lengths. Let’s hear how this adjective is pronounced.

Its pronunciation is similar to cohr-toh and it comes from the Latin word curtum, meaning “truncated”. Make sure the final -o has a clean sound, because Italian vowel sounds are clean!


two short green socks

Like all other adjectives in Italian, corto needs to match the gender and number of the noun.


If a dress is short, you will say corto because dress, abito, is a masculine noun in Italian.

Likewise, you will say corta if you’re talking about a jacket, giacca, which is a feminine noun.

Plural nouns behave the same way: if you want to describe three short threads, fili (masculine plural), use corti. If you’re talking about short sleeves, maniche (feminine plural), use corte instead.

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Language: English / Italian
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Pages: 672

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For example, you could say…

Queste gonne che ho comprato sono troppo corte.
These skirts I bought are too short!

Mia zia ha i capelli molto corti.
These skirts I bought are too short!
(Capelli, hair, is a masculine plural noun in Italian!)

La mia scarpa è più corta della tua. Che numero porti?
My shoe is shorter than yours. What size do you wear?

a pair of red and black shoes


Basso is the adjective you need to use to translate short in Italian when talking about people and buildings. This word can also translate the English adjective low.

Short, low

Basso also needs to match the noun in gender and number.


For example, you could say…

Le mie sorelle sono tutte più basse di me.
My sisters are all shorter than me.

Viviamo in quel basso edificio con il tetto piatto.
We live in that low building with the flat roof.

Sono troppo bassa per raggiungere lo scaffale più alto della libreria.
I am too small to reach the top shelf of the bookcase.

boy picking up a book from a bookcase


Breve is the Italian word for short when you’re talking about roads, paths, and speeches.


Breve has only two forms because adjectives ending in -e in Italian are the same for both genders.


For example, you could say…

Qual è il tragitto più breve per arrivare in centro?
What is the shortest way to get to the city center?

Il sindaco tenne un breve discorso.
The mayor made a short speech.

La strada che costeggia la spiaggia è più breve dell’altra.
The road that runs along the beach is shorter than the other.

Aiuta Lingookies con un 👍!

And that’s the end of our lesson on how to say short in Italian!

What next?

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