How to use "Just" in Italian

Solo,appena,proprio and soltanto can all mean "just" in English. How do I know when to use each one In Italian?

January 2, 2015

  • "solo" and "soltanto" are used mainly as "only/just one/single one". "Io ho solo una sorella" = "I've just one sister", "Io sono solo" = "I'm alone", "Soltanto uno" = "Just one".

  • "appena" is for "recently/in the immediate past". "Ho appena finito" = "I just finished"

  • "proprio" is for "exactly/precisely". "È proprio quello di cui ho bisogno" = "It's just what i need"

Hope it helps :-)

January 2, 2015

I was going to answer this question, but you've summed it up beautifully. Lingots for you.

January 3, 2015

Interesting. I wondered about the distinctions myself. Is there any difference in the use between solo and soltanto, or they more or less synonyms?

January 3, 2015

As adverb "solo" and "soltanto" are synonyms, but "solo" is more used. "Solo una volta" and "Soltanto una volta" have the same meaning.

"Solo" is also an adjective, so you can use it in a lot of other ways. "Sono solo" = "I'm alone", " Lo faccio da solo" = "I do it on my own".


January 3, 2015


January 3, 2015


December 28, 2015

Thank you!

May 4, 2018
Learn Italian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.