Italian Word of the Day: Attaccabrighe (troublemaker)

A person who is always ready to start an argument or pick a fight, often over trivial matters, is an attaccabrighe in Italian. The closest English translations are troublemaker and quarrelsome person. Because it is an invariable noun, its form does not change if you are talking about a woman or multiple people. l’ / …

Read more

Italian Word of the Day: Sosia (lookalike / doppelgänger)

The other day, my husband and I decided to watch Johnny Stecchino, an Italian comedy from the early 1990s directed by and starring the fantastically funny Roberto Benigni. The story follows Dante, a naive yet kind-hearted bus driver and part-time banana thief, whose uncanny physical resemblance to Sicilian mobster-turned-police informant Johnny Stecchino lands him in …

Read more

Italian Word of the Day: Dormiglione (sleepyhead)

A noun that describes someone who loves sleeping, or habitually sleeps in a lot, especially in the morning, is dormiglione (masculine, plural dormiglioni) or dormigliona (feminine, plural dormiglione) in Italian. The best translations are sleepyhead and late riser. Today’s word is the combination of the verb dormire (to sleep) and the suffix -one which is …

Read more

Italian Word of the Day: Vincitore (winner)

The Italian word for a male winner is vincitore (masculine, plural: vincitori). If you are talking about a female, this becomes vincitrice (feminine, plural: vincitrici). A useful way to remember this word is to think of the English terms victor or invincible. Learn with our video Il vincitore del torneo ha donato tutto il premio …

Read more

Italian Word of the Day: Bebè (baby)

The word bebè (masculine, invariable) is an affectionate way of saying baby or infant in Italian. It entered the language via the French bébé which itself comes from the English baby. Although the most commonly used terms for baby are bambino for a boy and bambina for a girl, they are somewhat problematic as they …

Read more

Italian Word of the Day: Rottame (wreck / piece of junk)

Ever since we began feeling the first aches and pains of age, my husband and I have jokingly started calling each other rottame (masculine, plural: rottami). It derives from rotto, the past participle of the verb rompere (to break), and the suffix -ame whose purpose is to form collective nouns from simple nouns, often with …

Read more