If you're trying to pick up a little bit of several languages, there isn't a better language family to be working with than the Romance languages. Their grammars are relatively simple and with a few hints you'll see that the vocabulary is largely familiar to educated English speakers. In this primer, you'll learn a little bit about noun, adjective and verb usage. More importantly, you'll learn how to greet people, introduce yourself and get a cup of coffee. So whether you're going to Western Europe and need to know how to get around, or you're studying one (or more) of these languages and want to put your learning together, this primer's a great place to start.
Your first 50 words in Spanish, French and Italian from multilingua.info is (will be) available in 3 formats. For a more organized presentation, you can work through the ten lessons, which show both the individual words and how to put them into conversations. For learning the individual items, you can click on the individual words in the table. Finally, for review or if you're good with lists, you can pull up a table showing all fifty items in all three languages.
A word to the wise: Whatever approach you take, studies show that language learning ability drops off markedly after half an hour to forty-five minutes of learning new material. So after half an hour, you should review what you've learned, rather than pushing on. Better yet, go get a cup of coffee and see how much you can remember of what you'd say if you were talking to the barista or cashier in Madrid, Paris or Rome.
table with all fifty words (under construction)
links to lessons and individual words (lesson breakdown shown)
multilingua.info main page - Spanish/French/Italian main page
For a quick start in the three major Romance languages, try out the "By Association Series," with its keys for learning a basic Romance language vocabulary in as little as a week. Or consider the entertaining Berlitz Rush Hour programs.
And check out our sister site, The Language Pages.