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Italian Sexual Euphemisms Posted by on Dec 16, 2015 in Vocabulary

With a title like that I wouldn’t be surprised if this turns out to be our most viewed post of 2015! WARNING: This Blog Contains Naughty Words and a joke with the word God in it!

In my article Italian False Friends I wrote: “If I were you, I’d be more concerned about the plethora of euphemistic words that refer to genitalia and sex … now those can be really embarrassing! Hmm, I suppose I’d better write a blog on the topic” Well folks, here it is!
There are literally hundreds of sexual euphemisms in Italian, but in order to keep you out of trouble I’m going to narrow down the list to those words which have a double meaning, one perfectly innocent and the other potentially embarrassing.



What’s so funny about a new neighbour who wants to get drunk and sweep all night long? Well, the verb scopare (to sweep) is one of the many Italian euphemisms for fuck.



 Yep … trombare (‘to trumpet’) is another euphemism for fuck!

Two other common euphemisms for fuck are: chiavare, literally ‘to use the key’ and fottere, to plant


Then we have segare (literally: to saw) which is used for male masturbation, hence farsi una sega (literally: to give oneself a saw) means to masturbate one self.


Particularly dangerous for the unwary foreigner are Italian euphemisms for cunt:

Hmmm ... 1 meter 88, 26 years old, entrepreneur, 90-100 million a year. Hmmm ... 2 tits 1 cunt

Hmmm … 1 meter 88, 26 years old, entrepreneur, 90-100 million a year. Hmmm … 2 tits 1 cunt

N.B. fico (masculine) is fig, fica (feminine) is cunt (also spelt figa). Pay particular attention here because normally tree are masculine and fruits feminine, e.g. melo = apple tree, mela = apple. Logically, therefore, fica should be the fruit of the fico, but in this case both the tree and the fruit are fico

Two other common Italian words for vagina are: farfallina (literally: little butterfly) and patatina (literally: little potato)


Euphemisms for prick/dick abound in Italy, cazzo probably being the most common …


… but we also have: uccello (literally: bird) and pisello (literally: pea)

La verginità è come una mollica di pane, passa l’uccello e se la porta via!
Virginity is like a bread crumb, the bird passes and takes it away!

Una volta Dio mi disse: “Figliolo, puoi scegliere se avere un pisello enorme o una buona memoria”, solo che non mi ricordo più cosa ho risposto!
God once told me “My son, you can choose whether to have an enormous penis or a good memory”, it’s just that I can’t remember what my answer was!

Have any of you had any embarrassing moments with Italian sexual euphemisms? Please share.

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