Italian Word of the Day: Moda (fashion / trend)

cover image with the word “moda” and its translation written on a notepad next to a cup of coffee

The Italian word for fashion is moda. It entered the language via the French mode, which you might recognise from the expression à la mode. Moda is a feminine noun whose plural form is mode. la modathe fashion una modaa fashion le modethe fashions delle mode(some) fashions Here are a few useful verbs you will …

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Italian Word of the Day: Broncio (pout / sulky expression)

cover image with the word “broncio” and its translation written on a notepad next to a cup of coffee

Broncio is an evocative noun in Italian that means pout or sulky expression. The exact origin of broncio remains somewhat contested. Treccani suggests that it may come from the late Latin brunchus meaning ‘snout’ or ‘face’, whereas Devoto-Oli states that it derives from the ancient French bronchier (meaning ‘vacillate’) which in turn comes from bronche …

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Italian Word of the Day: Spazzatura (garbage / trash)

cover image with the word “spazzatura” and its translation written on a notepad next to a cup of coffee

I never cease to be amazed at how Italian manages to make even the ugliest things in life sound beautiful. This is certainly the case with the word spazzatura which translates as garbage, trash or rubbish. Spazzatura is a feminine noun whose plural form is spazzature. la spazzaturauna spazzatura le spazzature* delle spazzature* *Note: keep …

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Italian Word of the Day: Vestaglia (dressing gown)

cover image with the word “vestaglia” and its translation written on a notepad next to a cup of coffee

The Italian word for what we call a dressing gown in English is vestaglia. It derives from the word veste meaning dress, clothing or garment. Vestaglia is a feminine noun, and its plural form is vestaglie. la vestagliathe dressing gown una vestagliaa dressing gown le vestagliethe dressing gowns delle vestaglie(some) dressing gowns Elena si è …

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Italian Word of the Day: Istruzione (education / instruction)

cover image with the word “istruzione” and its translation written on a notepad next to a cup of coffee

The Italian word istruzione, in its singular form, generally translates as education, schooling or training in English. You can use it to talk about a) the process of receiving or giving systematic instruction, generally carried out in school, or b) that which is learned or studied. It comes from the Latin instructio-onis, a derivative of …

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Italian Word of the Day: Piantagrane (troublemaker / nitpicker)

cover image with the word “piantagrane” and its translation written on a notepad next to a cup of coffee

The word for a pedantic person who raises questions and objections, and causes difficulties or problems over things of little importance is piantagrane in Italian. Some possible translations in English include troublemaker, fault-finder and nitpicker. Piantagrane is the combination of the verb piantare (to plant) and the noun grana, which in addition to meaning ‘grain‘ …

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