Florentine typical expressions (part 4)

Yeah! I have here another series of typical florentine expressions. ;-)

1) sciantillì, it means rubber galoshes. In Italy calosce is more common, but it’s used in Florence too.

2) mettersi a cécce, it means to sit down. Méttiti a cecce, per favore! (Sit down, please!). It is used mostly when talking to kids.

3) non reggere nemmeno il semolino, it literally means to not hold neither the semolina. It indicates a person who is not able to keep a secret. Gl’è andato a dire tutto a loro, ‘un regge neanche i’ semolino! (He shared all with them, he is unreliable!).

4) ‘un, it’s the florentine adverb not. It derives from non->nun->‘un (apheresis of nun). Double the n before to be or to have. ‘Unn’è vero! (It’s not true!). ‘Un lo so! (I don’t know!). ‘Un l’ho visto! (I didn’t see it). ‘Unn’ho ancora fatto una foto! (I have not taken a picture yet!).

5) preciso, it literally means precise, but it is sometimes used in the sense of exactly. E quindi sei tornato a casa? Preciso! (And then did you go back home? Exactly!).

6) tòni, it means tracksuit. The origin of this word is debated. Some lexicographers think that it originates from the english Anthony, a name used for clowns, and indirectly for their suit. Anyway, this is very florentine: try to use it a few miles outside Florence, and you probably won’t be understood. Ho comprato un toni nuovo! (I bought a new tracksuit!).

7) diladdàrno/diquaddàrno, they are used to indicate the Arno‘s riversides. Diladdarno (di là dall’Arno) means beyond the Arno (i.e., the Oltrarno), invariably indicating what is on the left side of the river Arno, whatever it is your position with respect to it. ;-) Diquaddarno means on this side of the Arno, which is on the right riverside.

8) c’è, it means “there is” (ci è). It is singular, but sometimes it’s used where the plural (third person) is required (ci sono, there are). It’s very characteristic. C’è quelli dei mobili! (Here there are those for the furniture!).

9) ATAF, Florentines love to joke about ATAF (Azienda Trasporti dell’Area Fiorentina), which is the public transportation city company. So the acronym ATAF became Aspettare Tanto Alla Fermata (to wait a lot at the bus station). :-)

10) levàssi la sete co’ i’ prosciùtto, it means to quench your thirst with the ham. It is used in an ironically sense, to indicate a person who creates more problems when trying to solve a problem. Ti sei levato la sete co’ i prosciutto! (You quenched your thirst with the ham!).

11) càcio, it means cheese. Ci sta come i’ cacio sui maccheroni (it pairs like the cheese on maccheroni), it’s used to indicate something that pairs perfectly with something else.

12) i’ che, it’s another jolly expression (il che) that means what. I’ che t’ha’ fatto? (What did you do?). I’ che t’ha’ comprato? (What did you buy?). I’ che si fa? (What do we do?).

13) cingómma, it derives from the english chewing gum. Ce l’hai una cingomma? (Do you have a chewing gum?).

14) destàrsi, it means to wake up. It is a variant of svegliarsi. Stamani mi son destato presto! (I woke up early today!).

15) gànzo, it means cool. It’s also used to indicate a lover. Ha brillantemente risolto il problema, che ganzo! (He brightly solved the problem, he’s great!). Sta tradendo il marito, c’ha il ganzo! (She is unfaithful to her husband, she has a lover!). The female version is ganza.

16) gòrfe, it is used to indicate the golf, but also a sweater. Ti piace quel gòrfe? (Do you like that sweater?).

17) tugùrio, it means hovel. It denotes a sleazy, poky, dark place. Sono stato in quel ristorante, gl’è un tugurio! (I was in that restaurant, it is sleazy!).

18) impelagàrsi, it derives from pelago (sea), so that in italian it’s common to say si è messo in un mare di guai (literally he got into a sea [a lot] of troubles). Then, in a figurative sense, it means to get into trouble. Perché ti sei impelagato così? (Why did you get into trouble this way?).

19) scoprire l’acqua càlda, it means to discover the hot water. It is used to indicate someone who makes or says something obvious. Dai, t’hai scoperto l’acqua carda! (Come on, this is obvious!). Carda is a variant of calda (hot).

20) Firènze, this is the most important. ;-) Actually, using the IPA notation it is pronounced [fiˈrεnʦe] (i.e., the “z” is a voiceless alveolar sibilant affricate. In italian it is known as zeta sórda). Instead, the wrong pronounce is [fiˈrεnʣe] (i.e., the “z” is a voiced alveolar affricate. In italian it is known as zeta sonòra).

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