A Handy Collection Posted by Serena on Jul 13, 2010 in Italian Language
When children learn to speak, they progress from using fairly generic terms to more specific ones as they gradually acquire and refine their vocabulary. They might, for example, begin by learning the word ‘dog’, believing that it can be applied to any small four legged animal. They then learn to differentiate dog from cat, rabbit, sheep, etc. Likewise they might use the generic word ‘car’ to describe a bus or a lorry and so on.
I remember that many years ago my little brother had learnt to distinguish my father’s FIAT 128 from other FIAT 128’s. Whenever he saw a car like my father’s he would point and say: “Papà, non è papà”, i.e. “that’s daddy’s type of car (a FIAT 128), but it isn’t daddy’s”.
When we learn a foreign language we pass through the same process, trying initially to get by with the few words that we know by creatively applying them to similar objects.
So, after that philosophical introduction, here is a simple little themed collection of words which deal with objects that help us to hold, open, and close things. Hopefully it will help to augment your vocabulary so that you can avoid using that ubiquitous word: “cosa” (thing).
|una maniglia||a handle: this is the type of handle that you use to open and close a door or window|
|un manico||a handle: this is the type of handle that you use to hold a saucepan, or a broom, hammer, spade etc.|
|una manovella||a handle: this is the sort of handle that you might find on a winch, or a very old car to start the engine. It can be translated as crank or winder|
|una manopola||a grip: for example on the handlebar of a motorbike, or on a ski stick. It can also be a rotating knob such as on a stereo, or a valve|
|un manubrio||a handlebar, e.g on a bicycle|
|una leva||a lever|
|un pomello||a non-rotating knob , e.g. on a draw|
|un catenaccio||a bolt, for securing a door, window etc.|
|un chiavistello||a door or window latch|
|un lucchetto||a padlock|
|una serratura||a lock on a door, draw and so on.|
|una chiave||a key|
|un mazzo di chiavi||a bunch of keys|
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