When ns was working as one au pair for an Italian household in Turin, the three kids I looked after ~ would begin every meal through a cheerful chorus the Buon appetito! (Bon appetit! / Enjoy her meal!), an expression many Italians say prior to eating.

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IPA: /buòn ap·pe·tì·to/

The proper solution to this expression is grazie, altrettanto (thanks, likewise) or grazie, anche a dare / voi (thanks, and also to you or you too).

La cena è servita! Buon appetito! – Grazie, altrettanto!

Dinner is served! reap your meal! – Thanks, you too!


Buon appetito is the an accurate equivalent of the famous French expression bon appétit i beg your pardon we’ve obtained into English.

This phrase, i beg your pardon literally equates as good appetite, has remained in use as far back as the middle Ages. During times the bountiful harvest or special occasions such together weddings, servants would certainly be invite to partake in the feast by high-ranking officials that would great them buon appetito prior to eating.

When economic problems improved in the subsequent centuries, buon appetito changed from an invitation to the negative into a general exclamation the gratitude.


Fast front to today, and also you are either in the buon appetito camp, or you aren’t.

I’ve met many Italians that would not start their meal without speak this expression. Yet there is a growing segment the the populace that feels the phrase is outdated, even uncouth, as it harks back to a time of class division. Some particularly dislike words appetito because that its association through gluttony. In high class society, plenty of prefer an ext formal expressions such together prego (please).

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No matter where you stand, there is no concern that buon appetito is still really much in use across Italy. Waiters say it with a gleeful smile as they offer you her meal. Children say that to your parents. Master say that to your guests. It is not unusual to to speak it between friends either if you all go out for a pizza one night. My husband has actually said it pretty much all his life together a method of mirroring gratitude. In short, the legacy varies from family members to family, also as an ar to region.

Whether a complete cultural shift far from this expression will take place within mine lifetime has actually yet to it is in seen!