Dictating Success: Mastering the Art of Using the Italian Verb ‘Dettare’


Are you ready to take command of your Italian language skills and dictate your way to success? Look no further than the powerful verb “dettare.” In this blog post, we’re diving deep into the wonderful world of “dettare” and exploring how to effectively use it in your Italian conversations. So grab your Italian notebook and let’s get started!

Understanding the Basics of ‘Dettare’

At its core, ‘dettare’ means “to dictate” in Italian. While it may seem straightforward, ‘dettare’ has a wealth of applications and nuances that can enhance your language proficiency. Let’s explore below:

1. Dictating Texts and Documents

One of the most common uses of ‘dettare’ is to describe the action of dictating written text. This can range from dictating a letter or email to transcribing notes. Here are a few examples:

  • Ho dettato il mio discorso al segretario. (I dictated my speech to the secretary.)
  • Lisa dettò una lettera al suo assistente. (Lisa dictated a letter to her assistant.)

2. Giving Instructions or Commands

‘Dettare’ can also be used to convey the act of giving instructions or commands sternly and assertively. This usage is particularly useful in professional settings. Consider these examples:

  • Il capo dettò le sue richieste al dipendente. (The boss dictated his demands to the employee.)
  • Il professore dettava gli esercizi ai suoi studenti. (The professor dictated the exercises to his students.)

3. Influencing and Shaping Thoughts

In a figurative sense, ‘dettare’ can be employed to express the idea of influencing or shaping thoughts, opinions, or behaviors. It suggests a certain level of authority or dominance. Here are some illustrations:

  • La società detta i canoni di bellezza. (Society dictates beauty standards.)
  • I genitori non dovrebbero dettare le scelte dei loro figli. (Parents should not dictate their children’s choices.)

Effective Expressions and Tips

To truly master the use of ‘dettare,’ try incorporating these essential expressions and practical tips into your Italian vocabulary:

1. Detta i tuoi desideri (Dictate your wishes):

Use this expression to assertively communicate your desires or preferences. For example:

  • Detta i tuoi desideri e assicurati che vengano ascoltati. (Dictate your wishes and make sure they are heard.)

2. Dettare il ritmo (Dictate the pace):

Use this expression to indicate the ability to set the pace or control a situation. For example:

  • Il leader del gruppo dettava il ritmo delle discussioni. (The group leader dictated the pace of the discussions.)

3. Dare voce al dettato (Give voice to the dictated):

This expression signifies giving a platform or amplifying the opinions or thoughts of someone else. For instance:

  • L’articolo diede voce alle idee dettate dal presidente. (The article gave voice to the ideas dictated by the president.)


As you wrap up this journey into the world of ‘dettare,’ you’ll find yourself equipped with the language tools to express dictation, give instructions, and influence others using this powerful Italian verb. Remember, practice makes perfect, so don’t hesitate to incorporate ‘dettare’ into your daily conversations. Whether you’re dictating text, giving commands, or shaping thoughts, ‘dettare’ is your key to Italian language success. Arrivederci e dettate il vostro cammino! (Goodbye and dictate your path!)