Not a member yet?
Already a member?

Mentre (while): Italian grammar lesson 105

Sign up for free to mark this post as completed.
Sign up for free to bookmark this post.
Sign up for free for a printer-friendly version.
To practice this grammar topic, take Lesson 105 of Ripeti Con Me!

Table of Contents

Mentre vs durante: Meaning

In Italian, we have two main words to talk about actions that happen at the same time: the conjunction mentre (while) and the preposition durante (during).

These words express contemporaneity and are used to describe events that take place simultaneously.

  • Ascolto la musica mentre corro.
    I listen to music while I run.
  • A volte dormo durante il giorno.
    Sometimes I sleep during the day.

while italian

Mentre vs durante: Explained

Italian audio course "Ripeti con me!" 105 a

Mentre is a conjunction, and it can be used to describe simultaneous events that happen in the present, past or future. Mentre always links two clauses and it usually appears before a verb.

Mentre + verb

  • Mentre cammino mi piace fischiettare.
    I like to whistle while I walk.
  • Ti aspetto qui mentre vai in banca.
    I’ll wait for you here while you go to the bank.

Durante is a preposition used to indicate that something is happening at the same time as an event. It is not used to link two clauses, but it usually precedes a noun or pronoun (the event), to state that something is happening simultaneously to that event.

Durante + noun

  • Ho letto durante tutto il volo.
    I read during the whole flight.
  • Non mangio mai durante le riunioni.
    I never eat during meetings.

what does mentre in italian mean

Mentre: Another meaning

Be careful though!

Sometimes mentre can have a different meaning. This conjunction is also widely used with a connotation of contrast.

Have a look at the examples below, they have nothing to do with time and contemporaneity!

  • Io voglio uscire, mentre lui vuole stare a casa.
    I want to go out, whereas he wants to stay in.
  • Giorgio dice che ci sarà il sole, mentre io credo che pioverà.
    Giorgio says it will be sunny, while I think it will rain.

In this case, mentre has a similar meaning to the conjunctions invece (instead) or ma (but), expressing contrast.

Practice with Quizlet

Here's a set of flashcards and quizzes to practice this grammar topic.

Mentre vs durante: Examples

Have a look at these examples of the use of mentre and durante (careful, the last one is not about two simultaneous actions!)

  • Qualcuno ti ha chiamato mentre dormivi.
    Someone called you while you were sleeping.
  • Mentre vai a fare la spesa io preparo il pranzo.
    While you go shopping I will cook lunch.
  • Spero di riuscire a dormire durante il viaggio.
    I hope I will be able to sleep during the trip.
  • Ho provato a concentrarmi durante la lezione, ma ero troppo stanca.
    I tried to concentrate during the lesson, but I was too tired.
  • Mio fratello vuole mangiare la pizza stasera, mentre io preferirei una zuppa.
    My brother wants to have pizza tonight, while I would prefer a soup.
To practice this grammar topic, take Lesson 105 of Ripeti Con Me!

2 Responses

  1. The lessons are short and explained very clearly.
    I enjoy following these lessons.

Leave a Reply

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on reddit

You might also like...

Missing someone or something You probably experienced the feeling of missing someone or something many times in your life. If you ever go to Italy and go back to your...
Da quando Time words and time expressions are always very useful. Some of the most common ones are sempre (always), mai (never), ancora (still), già (already), and appena (just). If...
Ogni In today’s short lesson, we’re going to learn how to use ogni. You probably heard this word many times and are familiar with it. It has different meanings so...
Sembrare Today’s lesson is about the equivalent of the verbs “to seem” or “to look”: the verb sembrare.  We use this when we want to give a personal opinion about...

Get my free updates in your mailbox...

0 +
You may easily unsubscribe at any time.
stefano 1

Go premium


Join for free

square e1554257578857 o5t21enzk19ssqmyyki2t2qt4nafhx9jqsvgu870u8
What would you like to see on FluentSimple?

This form is anonymous. ;)