Italian Adjectives & Expressions to talk about someone’s Personality 

Describing someone’s personality in one’s native language is difficult enough, let alone in a language we don’t know well.  Adjectives are commonly used to describe someone’s personality.

I’ve created a list of some of the most basic Italian adjectives to use when discussing personality, as well as some fun and useful expressions for more advanced learners.

I recommend learning every adjective and its antonym and associating it with someone you know or yourself.

Basic Italian adjectives to describe someone’s personality 

Italian AdjectiveEnglish TranslationAntonym
buonogoodcattivo
simpaticonice, friendlyantipatico
empaticoempathetic
gentile, educatopolitemaleducato
generosogeneroustaccagno
felicehappytriste
pazientepatientimpaziente
responsabileresponsibleirresponsabile
espansivoeffusive, warmriservato
affettuosoaffectionate
altruistaaltruisticegoista
ottimistaoptimisticpessimista
impulsivoimpulsiveriflessivo
sicuro di séconfidenttimido
estroversoextrovertintroverso
silenziosoquietchiacchierone
coraggiosobravecodardo
attivodynamicpigro
affidabiletrustworthy, reliableinaffidabile
ipocritahypocritesincero
allegrocheerful, bubbly
arrogantearrogant
socievolesociableasociale
stravaganteextravagant
sensibilesensitiveinsensibile

Advanced Italian adjectives to describe someone’s personality

Italian AdjectiveEnglish Translation
spensieratocheerful, carefree
negligentesloppy, careless
pensierosothoughtful
logorroicolong-winded (annoying)
loquacechatty, talkative
polemicoquarrelsome
scorbuticocrabby, obnoxious
affascinantecharming
superficialeshallow
tenace, determinatodetermined
lunaticomoody
ipocondriacohypochondriac
vanesiovain
venalevenal
permalosoprickly
saccenteknow-it-all, smart-ass
ambiziosoambitious
parsimoniosothrifty
curiosoinquisitive
invadentenosy
insistentepushy
sbadatoabsent-minded

Italian expressions to describe someone’s personality 

Italian ExpressionEnglish Translation
avere un caratteraccioto be bad-tempered
avere un carattere solareto have a radiant personality
avere una personalità affascinanteto have a charming personality
essere una viperato be bitchy
avere la mente apertato be open-minded
avere la mente chiusato be close-minded
essere alla manoto be easygoing
avere un carattere decisosomeone who knows what he or she wants
essere un rompiscatole (vulgar)to be a pain in the neck
essere un attaccabrigheto be a troublemaker
essere una persona di buon cuoreto be good-hearted
essere una persona di sani principito be someone with good values
essere in (gran) formato be in great shape
essere fuori formato be in poor shape
vivere in un modo tutto suoto live in one’s own world
essere pieni di séto be full of oneself
essere fuori dagli schemian unconventional person
avere una personalità forteto have a strong personality
avere i piedi per terrato be down-to-earth

Italian adjectives to describe someone intellectual ability

Italian AdjectiveEnglish Translation
genialebrilliant
brillantebrilliant
svegliobrainy (colloquial), smart
intelligenteintelligent
acutosharp
furbocunning (negative)
essere in gambato be very capable

About the Author

Serena Capilli

I’m the creative force behind both this blog and my collection of short stories in simple Italian for language learners, available on Amazon.

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Ciao, I'm Serena!

I’m the creative force behind both this blog and my collection of short stories in simple Italian for language learners, available on Amazon.

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