What is an Italian Translator?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 14 November 2018
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An Italian translator is someone who can translate materials from Italian to another language, and may also translate from other languages into Italian, depending on proficiency and area of interest. Italian translators are usually bilingual at a minimum, and may have knowledge of more than two languages. The more languages a translator speaks, the easier it is for him or her to find work, as it will be possible to work with people who have many different translation needs.

Some translators handle a wide variety of materials, while others prefer to stick with specific types of things. An Italian translator can handle written Italian in magazines, newspapers, letters, and so forth, and can also translate spoken Italian. Some translators work live, providing services like simultaneous translation which allow heads of state to communicate easily with each other. Others may translate spoken Italian in recorded format to generate subtitles, transcripts, dubbing, and other translations which can be used by people who cannot understand Italian.

In Italy itself, an Italian translator can work for the Italian government or another government, translating materials from Italian to other languages and vice versa. Translators can also provide assistance for travelers and businessmen inside Italy who want to be able to communicate with people who do not speak their language, and assist with the preparation of materials produced in other countries so that they can be distributed in Italian. Translators may also offer language instruction to people who are interested in learning Italian.


Outside of Italy, there are many venues of employment for Italian translators. These include embassies and other government jobs, along with translation for publishing houses and the media. An Italian translator can also work in a setting like a court, hospital, or medical clinic, providing assistance to Italian speakers who need to navigate the system and do not speak the language in dominant use.

It is important to note that there are a number of Italian dialects, and translators can have varying degrees of proficiency in different dialects. Some are so distinctive that it is difficult for speakers of one dialect to understand another, and a translator cannot necessarily translate anything in Italian or communicate easily with every Italian speaker. An Italian translator may also opt to work in Italian Sign Language, or Lingua Italiana dei Segni, a mode of communication used by the Deaf and hard of hearing in Italy. Italian sign is different both from spoken Italian and other Sign languages used by the Deaf and hard of hearing around the world.



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