Author: Alexandra Lawrence, Francesco Stefanelli

October 13, 2011


Sistola: Garden hose.   Example: ‘O ragazzi, ora basta bagnavvi con la sistola! Alla fine vù v'ammalate!' (‘Come on, guys, quit playing with the hose! You're going to get sick from being wet!')      Ingrullire: To be driven crazy.    Example: ‘
September 29, 2011

Essere ridotto al lumicino

Essere ridotto al lumicino During the fifteenth century, the Oratory of the Buonomini, located in the church of San Martino, was founded as a charity for poveri vergognosi, members of the nobility who had fallen on hard times but were too ashamed to ask for help. The Buonomini was adept at collecting money to distribute […]
September 15, 2011


Sicchè: So; then.  Example: ‘Sicchè alla fine siamo andati al teatro.' (‘So, in the end we went to the theatre.')   Midolla: The soft part of the bread.  Example: ‘La midolla di codesto pane unnè bona: la si sbriciola tutta!' (‘The
June 30, 2011

Da dare e da serbare

Da dare e da serbare: Literally ‘to give and to keep.' Figuratively, the saying indicates something possessed in large quantity-so much that there is plenty to go around.   Example: ‘Sta' tranquillo che stiacciata ce nè da dare e da serbare, un t'hai visto quanto
May 19, 2011


Giovare: To eat or to use something belonging to someone else without being disgusted. Example: 'O nini, tù te ne poi giovare di' mi' bicchiere; un l'ho usato!' (‘Little one, you can use my glass; I haven't used it!')   ‘Io un me ne giovo
May 5, 2011


Frignone: Whiner. Cry baby.   Example: ‘Via basta, abbozzala frignone! Un tu sei un bambino, ci dovevi pensare prima di fare tutte queste bischerate!' (‘Come on, quit it, you cry baby! You aren't a kid-you should have thought about it before you did all of this
April 21, 2011


Ronciata To fall on the ground and hit your face hard. Example: ‘Maremma bona lè cascato di’ bicicletta e l’ha battuto una ronciata in terra sull’asfalto!’ (‘Damn! He fell off his bike and smacked his face on the pavement!’)     In tre balletti In a jiffy. Example: ‘O Gino, un ti preoccupare, in tre […]
April 7, 2011


Ceccotoccami: Pest. A person (usually a child) who loves to get a rise and a reaction out of others. Imagine a kid goading or daring one of his friends, ‘Dai Cecco, toccami!' (‘Come on, Cecco, touch me!').   Example: ‘O ma guarda che i' tu' figliolo l'
March 10, 2011

Spunzonata, Curtello/curtella, Parea Pinco

Spunzonata Punch or very hard blow. Example: ‘Se sèguita gli dó una spunzonata nì viso!’ (‘If he keeps it up, I’m going to punch him in the face!’)   Curtello/curtella Knife. Example: ‘Leva i’ curtello da i’ tavolo, c’è i bambino!’ (‘Get the knife off the table; the baby is right there!’)   Parèa Pinco […]
February 10, 2011


Grullo: A person who is a little dense or naive. There are several variations, including ‘grullerello' and ‘citrullo.'   Example: ‘Ma guarda quel grullo come crede a ogni cosa!'(‘What a dope, that guy will believe anything!') Lè passato i' bruttaio: Expression to indicate a