Lost In Translation: Why We’re Not Sure If Berlusconi Is Engaged

Romance in Italian is so awkward. There’s no way to really ask someone out on a date, just “Vuoi uscire con me?” (Do you want to go out with me?) There isn’t even really a word for “date.” So if there’s no word for dating, does that mean it doesn’t exist? If a tree falls starts talking when nobody’s watching, did it really happen?

As for former Italian PM, several reports took Berlusconi’s announcement that “Mi sono fidanzato”- to mean that he got engaged. But as it turns out, there isn’t really a word for “engagement” in Italian either. Most often, it refers to a serious relationship, a step up from “Ho un ragazzo” (a more casual statement that translates literally into “I have a guy”).

So now you see how several American outlets just got kind of confused. There you have it- Berlusconi is not currently engaged to his 27-year old girlfriend. 

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