According to Wikipedia, Italian is spoken to some degree in Libya, Eritrea and Federal Republic of Somalia.

Are there in Africa any clearly different varieties of this language which have distinct local traits?

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    Your question is contradictory. The title presumes that there are distinct African dialects of Italian then the body asks if there are distinct dialects of Italian in Africa. Apr 9, 2013 at 11:36
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    None of this editing is helping--the latest makes the question title even less connected to the body of the question. Apr 9, 2013 at 15:15
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    They're only different dialects if they are clearly different; if they're not clearly different then they are not different dialects. Also, the question title doesn't just postulate, it presumes that there are "African dialects of Italian"; the question body then asks, in effect, if there are African dialects of Italian. Apr 9, 2013 at 23:41
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    That's just your misinterpretation of my words. E.g. Scottish, Cockney and Singapore dialects are the dialects of English, of which Scottish and Cockney are less (or not-so-clearly) different and Singapore English is more, or distinctly, different.
    – Manjusri
    Apr 10, 2013 at 4:33
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    I don't see the point of the bickering here. Why not just change the "dialects" in the wording to "varieties"? Nov 25, 2013 at 0:44

1 Answer 1


The only Italian colony with any substantial settlement was Libya which mostly occurred in the 1930s. Just before WWII over 100,000 or 1/8 of the inhabitants were Italian settlers, or Italo-Libyans, many of whom left during and after the war. A common estimate for 1962 is 35.000 Italians in Libya. They were ordered to leave after al-Gaddafi took power, though it seems there was still some 1,500 in the country by 1982.

There was simply no time for a Libyan Italian dialect to evolve.

  • Egypt was not an Italian colony but the Italian population was substantial and before that there was a Venetian population for a long time. Jan 13 at 20:28

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