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One of my great joys in the Italian language is learning words native to a particular region or city.
Most people know that Italy is full of dialects, but many people don’t realize that even in places that don’t have a specific dialect, the locals will still have particular words and phrases that aren’t used anywhere else.
Living in Florence, I recently realized just how often I use these “Florentine-isms” as part of my every day vocabulary, when I was speaking to someone from the south and they didn’t understand some of the things I was saying!
So, if you’ve ever wanted to speak Tuscan (or Florentine), here are some very common parole to memorize before your next trip.
1.) Berciare: To scream or to talk loud
— Cosa berci? – Why are you screaming?
2.) Abbozzare: To quit or to stop
— Abbozzala! – Stop it!
3.) Badare: To look at, to observe
— Bada lì che lavoro! – Look at that mess!
4.) Bischero: Silly person or an idiot
— Lui è proprio un bischero! – He is a real idiot!
5.) Grullo: An idiot, or a silly, stupid person
— Ma che sei grullo? – How dumb/silly/idiotic are you?
6.) Gingillarsi: To waste time, to dawdle
— Stai tutto il giorno a gingillarti. – You spend the whole day wasting your time!
7.) Imbroccare: To approach and conquest (a woman or a man)
You’ll use this when you want to meet someone and be more than friends.
— Vorrei imbroccarlo. – I would like to meet/date/start something with him.
8.) Passera or cicala: Not-so-polite reference to female genitals
9.) Il ruzzo: The mess
— Hai fatto un ruzzo! – You made a mess!
10.) Garbare: To like (it’s used just like “piacere”)
— Mi garba il nuovo museo! – I like the new museum!
11.) Sciupare: To ruin
— Ha sciupato la pasta! – He ruined the pasta!
12.) Lo sciupafemmine – A player, or ladies man
— Riccardo è uno sciupafemmine, ha una nuova ragazza ogni settimana. – Riccardo is a player, he has a new girl every week.
Have you ever heard any of these words? Do you use any regional words in Italian? Share your favorites below!