Italian Language Blog

Che Stanchezza! part 2 Posted by on Apr 7, 2010 in Italian Language

In part 1 of this blog I looked at some of the expressions that we use to describe physical tiredness. Now let’s have a look at how we express mental tiredness.

Listed below are four common ways of expressing mental tiredness, the familiar sensation that we get when our brain is beginning to grow numb and we can’t think straight anymore. Note that all of these expressions use the verb essere, and must therefore be modified according to number and gender.

essere rimbambito/a/i/e

essere rimbecillito/a/i/e 

essere rincretinito/a/i/e 

essere rimbischerito/a/i/e (this is a typical dialectic Tuscan expression)

Which of these expressions you choose to use is up to you, it’s really a matter of personal preference.

Obviously the best thing to do when you are rimbischerito/a/i/e is to ‘andare a letto’ (go to bed) e.g. "sono rimbischerita, vado a letto" (I’m mentally exhausted, I’m off to bed – feminine singular). N.B. I have added the word ‘mentally’ to my translations in order to differentiate them from the expressions for physical tiredness listed in part 1.

Alternately you could find a comfy place and ‘andare a sdraiarsi’ (go and lie down), or andare a riposarsi (go to have a rest), e.g "sono proprio rincretinito, adesso mi vado sdraiare" (I’m really mentally worn out, I’m going to have a lie down now – masculine singular), or "ragazze, se siete rimbambite perché non andate a riposarvi per un po’ ?" (girls, if you’re mentally tired out why don’t you go and rest for a bit? – feminine plural).

Here in Italy the traditional habit of taking a nap after lunch, especially in the heat of the summer when only mad dogs and tourists roam the streets, is still very common. All of the following mean to ‘take a nap’ or ‘have a siesta’:

fare la penichella

fare un pisolino, or schiacciare un pisolino

fare il riposino

fare il sonnellino

Quindi, se questo blog vi ha rimbecillito, meglio che fate un pisolino! (therefore, if this blog has mentally exhausted you, you’d better go and have a siesta!)

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  1. Jeannet:

    Buon giorno Serena,

    Mi piacere questo bloggo per di più perchè ci conosciamo l’espressione “krijg de rimbam ” –
    “get the rimbam’ which isn’t for us in NL a very polite saying. I won’t forget! Quando della necessità mi faccio il sollennilo!


  2. Jeannet:

    Salve Serina,

    Do I express myself correctly when I want to say in italiano:
    “Farsi un passiagata corta e fresca avanti d’andare a letto tutti giorni sia rimbischerito.” ?
    ( I place this sence in ‘word and phrase of the day)
    Grazie mille.

    • serena:

      @Jeannet Salve Jeannet,
      1. we don’t use the reflexive ‘farsi’ with passeggiata, you need to say ‘fare una passeggiata’
      2. let’s have a look at the order of the words, it sounds better like this: ‘fare una passeggiata breve e rinfrescante tutti i giorni prima di andare a letto’ (to take a short refreshing walk every day before going to bed), or if you are talking about yourself ‘tutti i giorni faccio una passeggiata breve e rinfrescante prima di andare a letto’ (every day I take a short refreshing walk before going to bed).
      3. I’m not sure what you mean by ‘sia rimbischerito’ (I can see that you like this word!) Do do mean ‘to tire yourself out?’ Remember that, as I say in my blogs, ‘rimbischerito’ is for mental tiredness. For physical tiredness use the verb ‘stancharsi’ (to tire oneself), so you could write:’tutti i giorni faccio una passeggiata breve e rinfrescante per stancarmi prima di andare a letto'(every day I take a short refreshing walk to tire myself out before going to bed).

      I can see by your comments that you are really trying hard to master the Italian language. If it’s o.k. with you I’ll correct your comments so that you can see where you’re going wrong.

      I hope this helps you, saluti da Serena

  3. Jeannet:

    Salve Serena, that is fine, thank you very much indeed for this great help. Voglio parlare correttamente, chiaro e tondo.
    Saluti da Jeannet

    • serena:

      @Jeannet Salve Jeannet, scusami, there was a little mistake in my reply, which I have now corrected. I wrote ‘stanchasi’ and it should have been ‘stancarsi’.
      Non mi sento bene in questi giorni perché ho un po’ di influenza, perciò quando l’ho scritto ero rimbischerita!

      A presto, Serena

  4. andreas:

    Salve Serena!
    Grazie per il blog. Ma come sempre ho una domanda: Che cosa significano penichella e pisolino, usati fuori questi espressioni. Non li ho trovati nel dizionario.

    • serena:

      @andreas Salve Andreas!
      Penichella o pennichella è una parola dialettale romana e significa “dormitina”, come pure pisolino, diminutivo del disusato “pisolo”. A proposito, “Pisolo” è il nome italiano di uno dei sette nani nella favola “Biancaneve e i sette nani”. Tutte queste parole, “dormitina”, “riposino”, “pisolino”, “pennichella”, “sonnellino” indicano una breve dormita, generalmente il breve riposo che si fa dopo pranzo, e non sono usati in altre situazioni.
      A presto.

  5. andreas:

    Salve Serena!
    Grazie infinite per la spiegazione.

  6. Jeannet:

    Un ‘sonnellino’ italiano
    siësta inglese

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