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Archive for March, 2016

Le Conte Italiane Posted by on Mar 31, 2016

As promised in yesterday’s blog, here is a small collection of conte (counting games) that I’ve selected from many many examples. Most of these conte contain the idiomatic expression toccare a qualcuno (to be somebody’s turn). For an explanation of le conte see here. I’ve also included translations for the two baffling barzellette (jokes) from…

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Now It’s My Turn Posted by on Mar 30, 2016

Last week Serena wrote a vocabulary blog about her cold, which it seemed that I’d escaped. But unfortunately, adesso tocca a me (now it’s my turn) … sniff sniff … Well, if Serena can make a blog out of a common cold so can I! But I’m not going to whine about how bad I…

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An Italian Painting for Easter Posted by on Mar 25, 2016

There is a hidden jewel in the Pinacoteca e Museo Civico in the small Tuscan town of Volterra: La Deposizione dalla Croce (The Deposition from the Cross) by Rosso Fiorentino. Giovan Battista di Jacopo (1494-1540), known as il Rosso Fiorentino (the Red-haired Florentine), was one of the most famous artist of 16th century Tuscan Mannerism…

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I’ve Got a Cold Posted by on Mar 23, 2016

Ogni medaglia ha il suo rovescio, every cloud has a silver lining. The cloud is my miserable cold, and the silver lining is that you get to learn some useful vocabulary. So, now you can moan about how bad you feel in both English and Italian … lucky you …. etciù!!! Suona il telefono. Serena…

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Does It Suit Me – Does It Fit Me? Posted by on Mar 21, 2016

Here’s a little point of grammar that can easily trip up the unwary: In Italian, when we talk about things fitting, we usually use the form starci (from the verb stare = to be/stay/remain and ci = there). Let’s take a look at some examples: Mi puoi mettere questa valigia in bagagliaio? – Purtroppo non…

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An Italian Poem for Father’s Day Posted by on Mar 18, 2016

Here in Italy, the 19th of March is La Festa del Papà (Father’s day). Here’s a beautiful poem written by Camillo Sbarbaro (1888 – 1967) and published in 1914 in the collection Pianissimo. The poem takes its title from the first line: Padre, se anche tu non fossi il mio padre (Father, even if you…

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Idiomatic Expressions With The Italian Verb Fare – Part 2 Posted by on Mar 16, 2016

Well, I did warn you that there are a lot of idiomatic expression with the verb fare! If you missed part 1 of this post you can find it HERE. 1. idiomatic weather expressions with fare: fare caldo/freddo = to be hot/cold: oggi fa proprio freddo! = it’s really cold today! fare bel/brutto/cattivo tempo =…

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