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Dividere and Condividere

What's the difference between dividere and condividere?


The short answer is that dividere means to "divide" and condividere means "to share." Dividere is a true cognate and is pretty obvious.


Davide doveva solo sposare Federica e dopo la sua morte,

Davide had only to marry Federica and after her death,

avremmo dovuto dividere l'eredità a metà.

we would have had to split the inheritance in two.

Captions 6-7, Il Commissario Manara - S2EP7 - Alta società

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Condividere adds the prefix/preposition con (with), so that makes a certain amount of sense as well. To divide up something with someone.


Voglio... saluto con tanto affetto

I want to... I say farewell with great affection to

Ines, Laura, Sara, Enzo e Norbert

Ines, Laura, Sara, Enzo, and Norbert

per aver condiviso con me e la famiglia gran parte della mia vita.

for having shared with me and the family the greater part of my life.

Captions 25-27, Ennio Morricone - ''Io sono morto, vado via senza disturbare''

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But with the verb "to share" in English, we also share information with someone. We don't keep it to ourselves. But we are not dividing it up. The same nuance exists in Italian.


Lei avrebbe dovuto condividere con me ogni scoperta,

You should have shared every discovery with me,

e invece non l'ha fatto.

but you didn't do that.

Caption 20, Il Commissario Manara - S1EP1 - Un delitto perfetto

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Condividere also means to agree on something, to have the same opinion as someone else. Even in English, we can use the word "share." "I share (or I don't share) your view."


"Non condivido ciò che dici,

"I don't agree with what you say,

ma sarei disposto a dare la vita

but I would willingly give my life

affinché tu possa dirlo".

so that you could say it."

Captions 19-21, In giro per l'Italia - Mazara Del Vallo - Sicilia

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But what is interesting is that if we do a search of the verb dividere in Yabla videos, we discover that it is often synonymous with condividere, or rather, there are plenty of cases where it means "to share." Sometimes, in order to share something, you have to divide it up, so using dividere can often be clear enough. If we look at the dictionary definition of dividere, "to share" is included. So we just have to keep in mind that a short answer isn't always good enough.


This question came up because, in a recent episode of Non è mai troppo tardi, we translated dividere as "to share," not "to divide."


The context: Alberto Manzi has become a TV personality, so people stop him on the street, and he is happy to talk to them and sign autographs. But his wife Ida is not so thrilled and she resents having to share him with so many other people. 


Con quanti dobbiamo dividerti ancora?

With how many more do we have to share you?

Caption 70, Non è mai troppo tardi - EP 2

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We can imagine a large pie to be divided up into slices. How big is Ida's slice of the pie? We can also note that she uses the preposition con. So it's pretty clear what she means. But do people also use con with condividere? Could she have said, Con quanti dobbiamo condividerti ancora? Probably, but it might have sounded a bit redundant and awkward. For sure, sometimes condividere and con are used together.


E quindi siamo partiti per una, circa, una quindicina di giorni

And so we left for fifteen days or so

e abbiamo vissuto in famiglia

and we stayed with families

e abbiamo praticamente condiviso con loro la loro vita quotidiana.

and we basically shared with them their daily life.

Captions 16-18, Professioni e mestieri - Erica - archeologa

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We hope this has cleared up any doubts you might have had about the verbs dividere and condividere. Let us know at


How to Get Mad in Italian

Did you watch last Wednesday's episode of Commissario Manara? You might have noticed that there's an excellent example of a pronominal verb.


Review pronominal verbs here.


Ce l'hai ancora con me.

You're still mad at me.

E perché mai dovrei avercela con te, scusa? Sono in vacanza.

And why on earth should I be mad at you, pardon me? I'm on vacation.

Captions 6-7, Il Commissario Manara - S2EP8 - Fuori servizio

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There are plenty of pronominal verbs Italians use constantly, and avercela is one that has a few different nuanced meanings. The verb avere (to have) combines with the direct object la (it) and the indirect object ci which can mean so many things, such as "to it/him/, for it/him/us" and it still doesn't make sense to an English ear, but it can mean to get angry, to feel resentment and more.


The meaning can be aggressive, as in "to have it in for someone." Avercela con qualcuno (to have it in for someone) happens to fit fairly well into a grammatically reasonable English translation, but avercela can also have a milder connotation, as in the example above, "to be mad at someone." And in this case, grammar pretty much goes out the window.


When you sense that something is not right with a friend, that they are not their usual talkative self, you wonder if you had done or said something wrong. This is the time to ask:

Ce l'hai con me? (Are you mad at me?)


Using the pronominal verb avercela, it becomes very personal and often implies resentment or placing blame. The feeling of anger or resentment has to be directed at someone, even oneself. 

Non ce l'ho con te. So che non era colpa tua. Ce l'ho con me stesso.
I'm not blaming you. I'm not holding it against you. I know it wasn't your fault. I have only myself to blame. I'm mad at myself.


There's a more official word for feeling resentful, too, risentirebut as you see from the dictionary, this verb has several meanings, so it isn't used all that often in everyday conversation. When you're mad, you want to be clear!


Let's look at the classic word for getting or being angry: fare arrabbiare (to make someone angry, to anger), arrabbiarsi (to get angry), arrabbiato (angry, mad), la rabbia (the anger).


If a parent, teacher, or boss is angry with a child, student, employee who did something wrong, then the word arrabbiarsi is the more suitable and direct term. It doesn't normally make sense to be actually resentful in these cases. In the following example, a colleague is talking to her co-worker about the boss. 


Alleluia! -Guarda che questa volta l'hai fatta grossa. Era veramente arrabbiato.

Halleluja! -Look. This time you really blew it, big time. He was really mad.

Captions 20-21, Il Commissario Manara - S2EP7 - Alta società

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Closely related to avercela con qualcuno is prendersela, another pronominal verb! We've discussed this here, and as you will see, in some cases, both avercela and prendersela are used in similar situations.


But prendersela contains the verb prendere (to take). It might be helpful to think of "taking something badly." 

Non te la prendere (don't feel bad, don't take this badly).


Unlikle avercela, which is directed towards someone, prendersela is reflexive, with se (oneself), as in prendersi (to take for oneself)— You're more on the receiving end of an emotion, which you then transfer to someone else.

Me la sono presa con Giuseppe (I took it out on Giuseppe, [but I shouldn't have]. I lost it).


One last expression bears mentioning. Arrabbiare is the correct word to use for getting angry, but lots of people just say it as in the following example. We are replacing the more vulgar term with the polite version: incavolarsi (to get angry), fare incavolare (to get someone angry).


E questo l'ha fatto incazzare tantissimo.

And this made him extremely angry.

Caption 21, Il Commissario Manara - S2EP3 - Delitto tra le lenzuola

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Now you have various ways to get angry in Italian, but we hope you won't need to resort to them too often.