Greetings favored one! The Lord is with you.

The Greek that is translated as “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you” or similar in English is translated in the interconfessional Italian Common Language Version (Traduzione Interconfessionale in Lingua Corrente, publ. 2014) as Ti saluto, Maria! Il Signore è con te: egli ti ha colmata di grazia or “Hail, Mary! The Lord is with you; he has filled you with grace.”

Carlo Buzzetti (in The Bible Translator 1982, p. 243) explains: “The most famous Latin translation, of St. Jerome, reads: Ave gratia plena, Dominus tecum (‘Hail, woman full of grace, the Lord is with you’), and a great many later translations have been influenced by it. So nearly all the Italian Roman Catholic editions of the Gospel say: Ti saluto, piena di grazia. il Signore e con te. However the Italian protestant versions have avoided the formula piena di grazia (‘full of grace’). This expression does not seem to be the best translation of the Greek, and it implies an interpretation which can easily be confessional: the words piena di grazia could be understood as a description of Mary almost independent from God, whereas the Greek word kecharitomene is a passive form. For this reason we read Ben ti sia, o favorita; il Signore sia leco (old Diodati version) or Ti saluto, o favorita dalla grazia, il Signore e teco (Riveduta version), in which favorita (‘favored one’) is preferred as the equivalent of kecharitomene.

“Unfortunately, the word favorita doesn’t belong at all to the common language Italian of today; and the reader who knows it probably gets the wrong shade of meaning and wrong connotations from it. The same thing is true of other participles and adjectives: graziata, gratificata, graziosa … so the Italian translators of [the Common Language Version] decided to bring in the subject (God) which is hidden in the passive Greek form: and they produced the formula Dio ti ha colmata di grazia (‘God has filled you with grace’). There was no confessional difficulty with this expression; on the contrary, the agreement was general.”