What does “Arrivederci”Really Mean?|Italian Bits|VIDEO

Ciao a tutti!

You might have already heard the word Arrivederci, in Italian. It’s a common semi formal way of taking leave from someone. The most informal way to bid good bye would be something like “Ciao, ciao” in Italian.

Although Arrivederci is commonly translated as goodbye, this Italian word is rich enough to deserve its own spotlight.

So, in this quick mini lesson you’ll find out about the component that make up the apparently plain Arrivederci.

in this context,  a functions as an adverb of time and it is more clearly translated as until.

Note: the literal translation of until in italian is Fino a

And there are other types of salutation that start with a

A domani, a dopo, a presto, a piu tardi and so forth


you will see the prefix ri often in Italian and it is usually used to convey the meaning that something is done again or anew.

rifare il letto ——> ri + fare: Remake the bed

rievocare memorie perse ——-> ri + evocare: recall lost memories


Vedere is an italian verb that means to see. Vedere is the infinitive form and you can guess that by its ending: ere.

Italian verbs are of three types, those that end in are, ere and ire. This is important because if the verb is regular it will follow a specific pattern when is conjugated, making your life a  little bit easier when it comes to learning Italian.

The present tense conjugation for regular verbs that end in -ere, for example, is


so, you keep the root word ved and simply add the letters that correspond to each subject pronoun.

Io vedo – Tu vedi – Lui/Lei vede

Noi vediamo – Voi vedete – Loro vedono

And since each subject pronoun has a different ending, the subject you are talking about in Italian it’s implicit in the conjugation so you do not need to routinely state it in each sentence and with each verb.

So there’s no need to say, “Io vedo le stelle”, for example, since you have said Vedo, it’s already understood in Italian that you(the person speaking) are the subject.

So, to get back to our specia greeting:

Ri+vedere means to see again.

“Voglio rivedere il film”

I want to see the movie again


Ci is a particle that can mean different things depending on the context in which it is used. In the word Arrivederci, ci, is the plural reflexive pronoun us.

To give you another example,

Ci vediamo, means to see ourselves or each other.


So wrapping that up, now you know that Arrivederci really means,

Until + Again +See + Each Other

or in a more comprehensible English:

(So long) Till we see each other again.

Check out here the difference between Arrivederci and Addio as well as other common used Italian greetings.

Let me know in the comments below if there is any Italian word or expression you’d like me to analyze or explain for you.

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