l' orologio

che ora è?

che ore sono?

They both stand for “What time is it?” or “What’s the time'”. They are interchangeable, you can use whichever one you like.

The answer is:

sono le … 

I need to use plural verb of to be sono (literally they are) and the feminine plural article le in most cases.

Some example:

6:00 = sono le sei 

4:00 = sono le quattro

2:00 = sono le due

When I need to say one o’clock I say è l’una (singular).

The terms a.m. and p.m. are not used in Italian.  If people don’t use the 24 h watch, you  need to understand through the contest.

So, for exact hours:

12:00 = sono le dodici / è mezzogiorno (more common)

24:00 = è mezzanotte

13:00 = sono le tredici / è l’una (more common)

14:00 = sono le quattordici /sono le due (more common)

Other expressions:

30 minutes = trenta /mezza or mezzo (literally means half)

15 minutes = quindici/un quarto (literally means a quarter)

45 minutes = quarantacinque/tre quarti (literally means three quarters)

For approximate time:

add the word e or meno

15:30 = sono le quindici e trenta / sono le tre e mezzo (or mezza)

16:35 = sono le sedici e trentacinque / sono le quattro e trentacinque

17:40 = sono le diciassette e quaranta / sono le cinque e quaranta / sono le sei meno venti

18:45 = sono le diciotto e quarantacinque / sono le sei e tre quarti / sono le sette meno un quarto

18:50 = sone le sette meno dieci

In daily conversation people use the 12 h watch. In formal situation (give a job appointment, at the doctor surgery…) people use 24 h watch.



Teacher Silvia

about me

I live in a town near Rome, the city that I love for its special atmosphere and its unique soul. I lived in another fantastic city, London, for five years and it was an incredibly enriching experience that I will never forget. I have in-depth experience teaching Italian as a Second and Foreign Language both in person and online. I graduated from La Sapienza University in Rome with degrees in Italian Language and Literature and I recived the DITALS Certification in Teaching Italian as a Second and Foreign Language from the University of Siena. I have taught Italian as a Second Language since 2003 in various contexts: intensive standard Italian courses, individual courses, CELI and CILS exam preparation courses, business courses and online courses via live video calls. I have extensive experience in teaching adults of different ages, backgrounds and levels of competence. I’m passionate about my work because I love my native language and I also love the fact that people find Italian and Italy so interesting and beautiful. I think learning a foreign language is an exciting and challenging way to travel across a culture while enjoying yourself along the way.

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“Learning another language is like becoming another person”.

Haruki Murakami

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