Did you know that although modern standard Italian is used all over Italy, very few Italians use it as their first language?
Italian is the official language of Italy, and 93% of the population are native Italian speakers. However, most speak one of the regional dialects as their first language. Many dialects are mutually unintelligible and thus considered by linguists as separate languages, but are not officially recognized.
For many of us, traveling to Italy means visiting our hometown and possibly meeting our living relatives. Often in these cases, the language may become a barrier unless we decide to hire a guide/translator or we start learning the language a few months before taking the trip. Italians will certainly welcome any attempt to communicate with them.
"My only regret regarding the visit to Italy was that I had not taken the time to learn some basic Italian. My few phrases and some creative inventions weren't an effective way to communicate. Tourists are rare in Sovico, and people in villages such as this generally do not speak English like those in touristy areas do. It was rare to find someone who did. Going there without the researcher My Italian Family provided, would have been of far less value." - Lois from Canada (in the picture)
In addition to that, many Italian Americans are pursuing their DUAL CITIZENSHIP. Italian citizenship automatically makes one a citizen of the European Community. Perhaps more than the opportunity of studying, working and living in Europe without the need of a Visa, Italian Dual Citizenship is a way to honor our Italian Ancestors and fulfills our longing to reconnect to our roots.
Although learning Italian is not a requirement to apply for Italian Dual Citizenship, the desire to learn the language is strong. Many of us regret the fact that our grandparents never taught us Italian.
When visiting Italy, especially on an ancestral town visit, prepare by learning some Italian. Many of our clients visit their town of origin in Italy in hope of meeting their living relatives. Imagine the joy in communicating with your long lost cousin or uncle? Learning Italian also helps preserve and promote our heritage outside the Italian borders.
Rest assured, no matter your level of Italian language proficiency, our Italian speaking genealogists and guides will help you navigate ancestral churches, obtain documents in town halls and parish churches and interpret information at local cemeteries.
Fore more information and to get started, CLICK HERE
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