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  • February 2009
    M T W T F S S

How can I say good luck in Italian?

Posted by Monica Corrias on February 23, 2009

As you probably know, in Italian the traditional way to say “good luck” is not  only “Buona fortuna” (literally = good luck), but rather “In bocca al lupo!” –> similar to English “Break a legs!”

When someone says that to you, there is a traditional very important reply that you are expected to give: “Crepi!” or “Crepi il lupo!

Today I would like to say “In bocca al lupo!”  to the students that are visiting Italy for them first time and that  should speak Italian. 

First of all I suggest learning Italian on the page “Italian classes”, but the most important hint is to try to get to know Italian people!  Remember that the purpose is to communicate, not just to do some academic exercises and you need to have conversation in Italian: the main focus is “to practise“!

I wrote some expressions – but only in Italian 😦  –  to accept an invitation or to refuse an invitation.

And remember the proverb:   Chi trova un amico, trova un tesoro!  =  Whoever finds a friend finds a treasure!

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Thank you very much 🙂 and say me “in bocca al lupo!”

29 Responses to “How can I say good luck in Italian?”

  1. Malik said

    First blog I read after wakeup from sleep today!


  2. ssian said

    Hi, i’m keen to learn italian after listening to Andrea Bocelli’s songs 🙂
    And i came upon your website 🙂
    This is nice 🙂

  3. […] In bocca al lupo and many best wishes as you start the next chapter of your lives! xoxo […]

  4. Alan said

    I am curious. “In bocca al lupo!” I don’t know Italian, but I know a little (VERY little) Spanish and (even less) French. I know that all three languages are Latin based and very similar. Inferring from what I know of Spanish and French, it sounds like that statement would translate into something like “In the mouth of the Wolf”. Am I close? Spanish boca=Mouth, lobo = wolf; French bouche=mouth, loup= wolf. Italian bocca=mouth??, lupo=wolf??

    Please email me and let me know if I was close,

    Thanks, Alan

    • Monica said

      Sì Alan, perfetto! Do you remember the fairy tale “Little Red Cap” or “Little Red Riding Hood” and the wolf? So … crepi il lupo!

      • Alan said

        I think it is so cool to be able to use what little I know of two languages to figure out what was said in third! The idea of becoming a linguist just became a little more appealing. I am fascinated with the how and why of not only the way languages are spoken, but with how they are written and read as well. Ir also helps that I love to listen to the way people talk (not just other languages, but accents when speaking English as well).

        Thank you so much for your reply,


    • ale said

      english is latin based too

      • Monica Corrias said


      • shant said

        English is entirely germanic, except that over time, half of its words ended up coming from French through shifts in power, and those French words are, at the start, basesd on a germanic Language which was highly influenced by latin….
        Sorry, little pet peeve of mine, couldn’t help correcting

  5. Geri Mars said

    I’m going to be spending A LOT of time reading this blog. I’m working on obtaining my dual American-Italian citizenship under Italy’s law of jure sanguinis, and really need to bone up for filling out the necessary forms. Although I spoke Italian near-fluently as a child, over the years, I’ve gotten very, very rusty. Currently, my Spanish is much better than my Italian. Fortunately, as the two languages are very similar, I have no doubt that I’ll be able to recover my Italian speaking, reading and writing ability.

    Wish me buona fortuna! I’m going to need to be in all of the “boccas al lupos” I can get. (BTW, I’m pretty sure that expression means “in the wolf’s mouth,” which may be considerably worse than having a broken leg.) = D

    • Monica Corrias said

      … allora, in bocca al lupo! Sono sicura che riuscirai a ottenere la doppia cittadinanza 🙂
      ma attenzione: è vero che -per quanto riguarda la pronuncia e il vocabolario- italiano e spagnolo sono simili, ma in realtà ci sono molti “falsi amici” (parole uguali con significato differente), inoltre la grammatica non è così vicina come sembra. Questo significa solo che dovrai impegnarti un po’ più del previsto, ma ce la farai benissimo 🙂

      • shant said

        Has anyone ever told you that it’s amazing how much knowing French helps you understand written Italian with barely any lessons?

      • Monica Corrias said

        Sì, Shant. Me l’hanno detto, meglio così 😉

  6. Rashed Aljanahi said

    OH! I just love any thing Italian! think of Sophia Loren,Valentuno,Bocelli, Versace, Dolce Gabanna, Ferrari ect…and certo ( tiramisu)!Rashed from Dubai

  7. Cori said

    Ciao Monica, Ho sentito che per augurare qualcuno “buona fortuna” che in realità è una porta sfortuna… Che dobbiamo usare sempre “in bocca al lupo” (crepi) o “nel culo della balena” (di cui non c’è un risposto).

    Ho voluto dirti che “break a leg” è una frase usato solo nel teatro, dove “good luck” è una porta sfortuna… ma in tutte le altri casi “buona fortuna” è usato, e “break a leg” non ha molto senso.

  8. Sangeeta Mishra said

    hi i want to learn italian language in a fun and easy way can u tell me how i can learn
    (plz reply in englush if possible)

  9. study Abroad In korea said

    Today, I went to the beach with my children. I found a sea shell and
    gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.”
    She placed the shell to her ear and screamed. There was a
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    She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is completely off topic but I had to tell someone!

    • Monica Corrias said

      Ok, hai passato una bella giornata e la comunicazione è OT, ma ti auguro di trascorrere altre belle giornate.
      Buona fortuna 😉

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