Italo-Australian dialect

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People with Italian ancestry as a percentage of the population in Australia divided geographically by statistical local area, as of the 2011 census

Italo-Australian [1] is an Italian dialect developing in Australia that is spoken by Australians of Italian descent.[2]


The exact number of speakers is unknown, but it is highly speculated that the language is mainly spoken by the younger generations, passed on by the elder ancestors, who created the language.[3] Some researchers think that can be spoken by nearly 300,000 Italian Australians in 2012.


The foundation of this dialect is the Modern Italian Language, which was brought to Australia following the Italian diaspora in the post World War One era. It wasn't until the years after the second diaspora after World War Two that the dialect came into note.[according to whom?]

The language was simply created with modern Italian words being influenced by the vocabulary of the English language, to create Italian/English words. Some words being of Italian spelling changing to an English only with a few character changes to make it sound Italian.[4] Italian linguist Tullio De Mauro has noted the dialect in his famous book 'Storia Della Lingua' as "developing dialect that is still enduring the modern influences of English".

De Mauro also claims the language is growing with the vocabulary being passed onto the younger generations of Italian Australians.

Common words[edit]

Italian is said to be the foundation, and English is said to be the influence, according to De Mauro.

English Italo-Australian Italian
Car Carro Macchina
Cake Checca Torta
Market Marchetta Mercato
Farm Farma Fattoria
Factory Fattoria Fabbrica
Fence Fensa Recinto
To Park Parcare Parcheggiare
To Push Pusciare Spingere
To Stop Stoppare Fermare
To Start Stardare Cominciare
Lollies Loli Caramelle
Jeans Ginsi I Jeans
Shed Scedda (Scella) Capanno
Shower Scea Doccia
Refrigerator Friggia Frigorifero
Chips Cipi Patate Fritte
Washing Machine Guasci Mascina Lavatrice
Spray Spraia Spruzzo
To Smash Smesciare Sfasciare


  1. ^ Italian Australian dialect (in Italian)
  2. ^ Tullio De Mauro. "Storia Della Lingua Italiana" (p.79)
  3. ^ Identity
  4. ^ Tullio De Mauro. "Storia Della Lingua Italiana" (p.102)

See Also[edit]