Italian Word of the Day: Amicizia (friendship)

The word for friendship in Italian is amicizia (feminine, plural: amicizie). It derives from the Latin amicitia of the same meaning.


A few common verbs you’ll see used with amicizia include:

  • fare amicizia = to make friends
  • essere in amicizia = to be friends
  • rompere un’amicizia = to break off a friendship
  • stringere amicizia = to become friends
  • legarsi d’amicizia = to make friends

Ho fatto amicizia con la signora anziana che vive nella casa accanto.

I’ve made friends with the elderly lady who lives next door.

L’amicizia fra l’uomo e il cane. = The friendship between man and dog.

Metaphorically speaking, you can use the expression fare amicizia con (to make friends with) to say that you’ve become comfortable with something, such as your inner demons, or learned to treat something well, such as your body.

Vogliamo promuovere il benessere psichico e fisico, e incoraggiavi a fare amicizia con il proprio corpo.

We want to promote mental and physical well-being and to encourage you to make friends with your body.

The expression per amicizia (lit: for friendship) refers to something said or done purely out of friendship without any personal gain. For example, if you feel your good friend is in a toxic relationship, you might preface your thoughts by saying Te lo dico per amicizia… (I’m telling you this because we’re good friends…).

The expression in amicizia means that you’re being honest with someone because the friendship requires it.

Te lo dico in tutta amicizia: devi darle un’altra occasione.

I’m telling you honestly: you need to give her another chance.

Two young African boys resting outdoors on a sunny day
La nostra amicizia sta crescendo. = Our friendship is growing.

In its plural form amicizie, the meaning becomes friends (amici) or company (compagnia):

  • molte amicizie = many friends
  • poche amicizie = few friends
  • avere buone amicizie = to keep good company
  • avere cattive amicizie = to keep bad company
  • amicizie altolocate = friends in high places

By extension, amicizia can also refer to a state of mutual trust and support between states and nations. Possible English translations include amity and alliance. Euphemistically, it may also denote a love affair, particularly those involving a couple of the same sex.

Some important Italian words that are related to amicizia include amico (male friend), amica (female friend), amichevole (friendly) and amichevolmente (in a friendly manner).

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