Mettere vs Porre




What's the difference between “Mettere” and “Porre”?

Thank you!



Hi JamesP69, 

Thanks for your question!
Although they have similar meaning, they are not interchangeable.
"Mettere" can be translated as "to put" and it generally refers to something physical ("metti la borsa sul tavolo" - "put the bag on the table").
"Porre" is usually translated as "to place" or "to pose". It's a slightly "more formal" way of "mettere" (e.g. "poni la mano sul fianco" - "place your hand on the hip"), but depending on the context its meaning can vary.
For instance:
"porre una domanda" - "to raise a question" (you cannot say "mettere una domanda")
"porre termine alla discussione" - "to stop the discussion" (you cannot say "mettere termine alla discussione".

"Porre" also has several compounds:
  • compose (comporre)
  • depose (deporre)
  • impose (imporre)
  • suppose (supporre)
  • transpose (trasporre), and so on.
Hope this helps, don't hesitate to let me know if you have more questions! :)

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