How to say Merry Christmas in Italian and a Happy New Year, together with all the other Italian christmas card messages or phrases you need to know to see you through the festive season and into New Year's day.
Simple, for both Happy Christmas and Merry Christmas it is: "Buon Natale!".
Or, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year is "Buon Natale e un Felice Anno Nuovo".
Or, more generally, Happy Holidays is "Buone Feste".
Now, if you want to say "Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year" in Italian, it is still easy to do, but first you need to know how many people are sending the good wishes and to how many: I'll explain!
There are four possible combinations:
1. From one person - just you - to one person, ie your friend.
2. From one person - just you - to more than one person, ie a couple or a family.
3. From more than one person - ie you and your partner, or you and your family etc - to one person, ie a friend.
4. From more than one person to more than one person.
Still with me? Good :) When you know which one applies, here are the phrases:
1. From one person - just you - to one person, ie your friend
"Ti Auguro un Buon Natale e un Felice Anno Nuovo"
(You are saying from me to you (singular)
2. From one person - just you - to more than one person, ie a couple or a family
"Vi Auguro un Buon Natale e un Felice Anno Nuovo"
3. From more than one person - ie you and your partner, or you and your family etc - to one person, ie a friend
"Ti Auguriamo un Buon Natale e un Felice Anno Nuovo"
4. From more than one person to more than one person.
"Vi Auguriamo un Buon Natale e un Felice Anno Nuovo"
If you want to say "With best wishes", then you can write either: "Con tanti auguri" or "Con i miglori auguri".
"With love from" would usually be written in Italian as "con un abbraccio" - literally meaning a hug or embrace.
If you know the person very well and want to write "with love", then your choices are "con amore".
Or, "to my love" would be "al mio amore", "for my love" would be "per il mio amore", and, simply, "my love" is "il mio amore".
"With affection" is "con affetto", and "affectionately" is "affettuosamente".
And "with friendship" is " con amicizia".
Christmas is: "il Natale".
Christmastime is: "periodo di Natale".
Christmas Eve is: "la vigilia di Natale".
Christmas night: "la notte di Natale".
The Christmas holidays are: "vacanze natalizie".
Father Christmas or Santa Claus is: "Babbo Natale".
The Christmas tree is "albero di Natale" and decorations are, "decorazioni di Natale"
Santa's Christmas stocking is: "calza di Natale".
Xmas presents: "regali di Natale", or "doni di Natale". And, for just one present it is, "il regalo di Natale", or "dono di Natale".
The Christmas lights are: "le luci di Natale"
Christmas carols are: "canti di Natale"
The birth of Christ is: "la nascita di Gesù".
A natavity scene is, "Presepio" and the three wise men or three kings are "i Re Magi".
An advent calendar is, "Il calendario dell'Avvento".
And, Boxing Day in Italy is "la festa di Santo Stefano".
How to say Happy New Year in Italian is - you will already have guessed by now!: "Buon Anno!"
Or you could write, "Wishing you a New Year full of love, peace and happiness", in which case just pop back up the page to find the right one of the four combinations of writing the "wishing" part - either I to you (singular), I to you (plural), we to you (singular), or we to you (plural) - and then add
" ...un Nuovo Anno pieno di amore, pace e felicita".
Example: me wishing you, my visitors to this guide, would be: "Vi auguro un Nuovo Anno pieno di amore, pace e felicita".
And, similarly, me writing "Wishing you a Happy and prosperous New Year" to you all, would be ; "Vi auguro un Buon e Prospero Nuovo Anno".
New Year's Eve is: "la Festa di San Silvestro".
New Year's Eve party: "il veglione di Capodanno" or "festa di Capodanno".
The New Year's Eve dinner, which in our Italian family is bigger and much more relaxed affair as it generally prepared together and shared amongst lots of friends and family is "il cenone".
And the countdown to midnight ... "il conto alla rovescia".
New Year's Day: "il Capodanno".
The New Year: "l'Anno Nuovo".
The New Year's resolutions are "i buoni propositi per l'Anno Nuovo".
The sparkling toast - "brindisi" - for the click on midnight is normally the Italian sparkling wine "Prosecco". When everyone in the room has a glass, the toast will be be either a "Cheers!" with "Cin Cin!", or "Salute!" and then the clinks begin! For each person will clink every other persons glass before taking a sip! Now, that often means a lot of clinking and stretching across the table or walking around the room!
And, just in case you need it ;) the phrase for "I have a headache" is "ho una mal di testa". And, although I have never heard it said during all the time I have lived in Italy, "I have a hangover", is "ho i postumi di una sbornia" (which literally means I have the posthumous effects of getting sloshed or plastered!).
On the 6 January of each year in Italy the Epiphany celebrations, "Epifania", take place. But, there is also an event the night before.
Now, my first year as a mum in Italy I have to admit that I got caught out. As, notwithstanding having an Italian husband (he forgot to mention it!), I hadn't prepared for the eve of Epifana celebrations not realising their significance, especially for children of the coming of the ugly, but good, witch Befana. An Italian children's witch who traditionally brings gifts - or lumps of coal - and "caramelle" (candies and sweets) in a stocking whilst the children sleep. I hustled something together that night, but now I'm prepared and understand why all the shops here in Maremma are filled with flying witches on broomsticks from November onwards!
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