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The preposition per (for) has a lot of uses in Italian.
When per indicates a duration, it translates as for.
|Il bambino ha dormito per 3 ore||The child slept for three hours|
|Ti ho aspettato per mezz'ora||I waited for you for an hour|
When per indicates destination, it translates as to.
|Giovanni ha appena preso l'aereo per Miami||Giovanni has just caught the plane to Miami|
|La strada per andare a Roma è molto lunga||The way to go to Rome is very long|
When per expresses a motion "through" something (literal and figurative), it translates as through.
|L'autostrada passa per Siena||The highway goes through Siena|
|Un'idea mi è passata per la mente||An idea went through my mind|
When per introduces a reason, it translates as for or as because of.
|Ti ammiro per la tua pazienza||I admire you for your patience|
|Non posso lavorare fuori per il freddo||I can't work outside because of the cold|
When per indicates a purpose, it translates as to.
|Lui l'ha detto per infastidirmi||He said that to annoy me|
|Cosa posso fare per aiutarti?||What can I do to help you?|
When per expresses the imminence of an action, it translates as to.
|Elisa sta per finire il lavoro||Elisa is going to finish the work.|
|Voi state per partire per il Messico||You are going to go to Mexico.|
When per introduces a price or a measure, it translates as for.
|Tu hai preso quella torta per soli 15 euro||You took that cake for only 15 euros|
|Hanno camminato per venti chilometri senza fermarsi||They walked for twenty kilometres without taking a break|
In the following table you can find a list of typical Italian expressions that are introduced by the preposition "per".
|per amor del cielo||for heaven's sake|
|per di più||in addition|
|per errore||by mistake|
|per esempio||for example|
|per farla breve||to make a long story short|
|per filo e per segno||to the letter, in every detail|
|per giunta||in addition|
|per iscritto||in writing|
|per legge||by law|
|per lo meno||at least|
|per lo più||at most|
|per mezzo di||by means of|
|per modo di dire||so to speak|
|per niente||for no reason at all|
|per quanto mi riguarda||as far as I'm concerned|
|per sbaglio||by mistake|
|prendere lucciole per lanterne||to make a blunder|
|salvarsi per un pelo||to escape by the skin of one's teeth|
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