Category Archives: Italian Language

Che gelo!

 

cold-winter

 

Brrr! Il freddo ci ha tenuto in ostaggio! Non si esce di casa in temere di gelare. Qui a New York si subiscono le temperature real-feel sotto 0° F, -16° C.

 

(The cold has taken over! We can’t go out of our houses in fear of freezing over. Here in New York we are experiencing “real-feel” temperatures of below 0°F.)

Santo ghiacciolo! (Holy icicle!)

frozen branch

 

Ma se si dovreste uscire per forza, si consigliato vestirsi con strati di vestiti. Io per esempio mi metto prima pantaloni e camicia termici di seta, poi pantaloni e maglietta con maniche lunghe, poi sopra una maglia di lana, poi un gillet di piume d’oca, e finalmente un giubbotto di piume d’oca sopra. Inoltre, anche mi metto un cappello di pelliccia, sciarpa di lana, guanti di pelle con fodera di cashmere, stivali Uggs, e se riesco poi muovermi con tutta questa roba adosso, esco! Ma chiariamoci bene i miei cari lettori, piu’ probabilmente mi troverete sotto le coperte con telecomando in mano anziché uscire in questo pazzesco freddo!

 

(But if you must go out for sure, it is advised that you dress yourself in layers. For example, I first put on thermal silk underwear, then pants, then a long sleeved knit shirt, on top of that a wool sweater, then a down vest, and finally a down jacket. I also wear a fur hat, a wool scarf, cashmere lined leather gloves and my Ugg boots, and only then if I am able to move with all this stuff on i’ll go out! But let’s be perfectly clear my dear readers, you will most likely find me under my covers with the remote in my hand instead of going out in this crazy cold!)

 

Enjoy some cold-related vocabulary in Italiano

il gelo

 bitter cold

gelare

to freeze

il ghiacciolo

icicle/popsicle

i pantaloni termici

thermal underwear

le  maniche lunghe long sleeves
la maglia di lana wool sweater
il gillet vest
le piume d’oca down feathers
il giubbotto jacket
la pelliccia fur
il cappello hat
la sciarpa scarf
la fodera lining
gli stivali boots
la neve snow

Granturco, Maize, or Pannocchia?

Corn is a human invention, believed to be originally cultivated in Central Mexico, where it is referred to as maize. The Indians througout North and South America depended upon this crop for most of their food. It eventually reached the Eastern part of North America about 1000 years ago.

When the first Thanksgiving was held in 1621 corn would have certainly been part of the menu, but cranberry, sweet potates and pumpkin pie most likely would not have been on the table.

Maize spread to the West in the 1500’s cultivating early in the Veneto region then arriving in Naples, Italy in the 1600’s. It became the base of the farmer’s food supply, used predominantly in polenta.

There are many terms for corn in Italian and it is my mission here to explain the differences, because I know you’ve been dying to know.

Maize means corn the term used in British English therefore used in Europe (Italy).

Granturco is a name given to corn as a result of improper translation from the English who called it WHEAT OF TURKEY, or grano dei tacchini, because of its resemblance to a turkey’s neck wearing a Turkish turban on its head, which could also be interpreted as grano di Turchia.

Pannocchia di granturcomeans corncob


mais-pianta

Pannocchia (f) pertaining to the cob or ear, is another word for spiga, the female flower head which holds the kernals. It is improperly called pannocchia, which is actually the male flower head.   The cob is the spiga (f) (see below)

Spiga (f) is the female flower head, the cob, which holds the kernals le cariossidi

Pennacchio (m) male flower head at the top of the stalk

stocco/fusto is the stalk or stem fo the corn plant

granturco

So there you have it, your break down of corn in Italian, all just in time for Thanksgiving.

Buone feste!

E` arrivata l’estate!

anguria

Amo l’estate. E` la mia stagione preferita senza dubbio. L’aspetto tutto l’anno. Mi piace non dover mettermi vestiti pesanti. Mi piacciono le lunghe serate dove il sole non tramonta fino le nove. Mi piace girare in bici nell’aria fresca e calda. Mi piace cenare alla terrazza al fresco con un dissetante bicchiere di vino biano. Ma soprattutto adoro la spiaggia e tutto lo splendore che offre:  lo schizzo dell’oceano sul viso, lo sbattere dei raggi del sole sulla schiena, le passaggiate sulla riva, il profumo del cocco, e il cielo sereno e azzurro.

Quali sono le tue cose preferite dell’estate?

un vocabolario estivo

il sole

il_sole

il costume da bagno

il_costume_da_bagno

La barca vela

la_barca_vela

 

L’asciugamano

lasciugamo

 

L’ombrellone

lombrellone

La palla da spiaggia

la_palla_da_spiaggia


Il secchiello & la paletta

il_secchiello_e_la_paletta


La maschera da scuba

la_maschera_da_scuba

La conchiglia

la_conchiglia

Il castello di sabbia

il__castello_di_sabbia

Il faro

il_faro

La spiaggia

la_spiaggia

la crema protettiva

la_crema_protettiva


gli occhiali da sole

gli_occhiali_da_sole

Tanta neve!

snowflake

Abbiamo sopravvissuto la prima tempesta di neve del 2013. Cio il monster storm chiamato “Nemo” dal servizio meteorologico nazionale. Ora nominano le tempeste di neve! Accidenti! Non abbiamo ricevuto quanta neve come aspettavano, ma comunque abbastanza come 12″ (un piede) e abbastanza per fare chiudere le scuole and cancellare gli avvenimenti come la nostra festa annuale di carnevale per bambini. Cerchiamo pero di spostarla anzich cancellarla. Velo confermiamo appena possibile.

Fuori pero, sembra un mondo magicale invernale.

snow_1


Io e mia figlia, Gabriella, abbiamo deciso di fare un bella passeggiata nel bosco a pochi passi da casa nostra. Che meraviglia! Sembravo di essere in Vermont o Colorado, non in New York!

snow_5 snow_6 snow_8

snow_10 snow_9

Ora mi pigliano di andare in slitta! Nel frattempo vi lascio con del vocabolario invernale.

Divertitevi nella neve! Al pi presto!


tempesta di neve – snow storm

pupazzo di neve – snowman

fioccho di neve – snowflake

tuta di neve – snowsuit

le manopole – mittens

la sciarpa di lana – wool scarf

il cappello di lana – wool hat

il giubbotto – winter coat (like a down parka)

sciare – to ski

la slitta – sled

andare in slitta – to go sledding

pattinare sul ghiaccio – ice skating

battaglia di palle di neve – snowball fight

cioccolata calda – hot chocolate

Italian 101

Italian 101

Here at La Piazza di Carolina, we’re dedicated to teaching Italian to people of all ages. But we don’t want you just to know how to speak Italian; we want you to know about the language too! So here are 10 facts to start you off:

  1. Italian is a Romance language, tracing its roots back to Latin. It’s also the Romance language that is most similar to Latin.
  2. Approximately 66 million people throughout the world speak Italian.
  3. It is the official language of Italy, San Marino, and certain parts of Switzerland.
  4. Italy’s unification in 1861 established what we know as modern Italian as the country’s main language. Before this, many people mainly spoke a regional dialect.
  5. And speaking of dialects, modern Italian comes from one that was spoken in Tuscany.
  6. Italian is also spoken in various places outside of Europe, including parts of the US, Argentina, Venezuela, Australia, and Canada.
  7. The five cities in the United States with the greatest amount of Italian speakers are New York City, Boston, Chicago, Miami, and Philadelphia.
  8. Italian ranks fifth among the most popular non-native languages taught.
  9. Almost every word in Italian ends with a vowel.

10. According to BBC, the longest word in Italian (with 29 letters!) is esofagodermatodigiunoplastica, which they say refers to surgery following the removal of the stomach and oesophagus.

Ciao!

P.S. And now that you know, don’t keep these facts to yourself! Help us spread the knowledge by likin or retweeting this post.

Don’t Be Fooled by the Italian Language!

speak_Italian

One of the benefits while learning to speak Italian is that there are many cognates, or parole simili – Italian words that resemble English words and have similar meanings. There are minor differences in spelling between English and Italian cognates. However there are a few patterns that are easily recognizable:

zione = tion inflazione inflation
t  = ty universit  university
oso = ous famoso famous
za = ce apparenza appearance
ismo = ism turismo tourism
ssione = ssion impressione impression
BUT – ATTENZIONE! There are some words that may seem like cognates but are actually falsi amici (literally false friends) – false cognates. So don’t be fooled!
some common mistakes are:
camera room NOT an object that takes photographs
confrontare to compare NOT confront
fattoria farm NOT factory
intendere to understand, hear, want NOT to intend to
libreria bookstore NOT library
magazzino store, warehouse NOT magazine
parente relative NOT parent
peperoni hot peppers NOT the spicy salami we put on pizza
As always, practice makes perfect. So should you find yourself foolishly mistaking your Italian cognates, not to worry, because real-life experience will be your best studying tool.
Allora, parliamo italiano!
Can you think of more falsi amici in italiano?