Here comes another round of Italian idiomatic phrases!
Actually, it is more than one round as – exactly as it happened last time – when I started researching for common Italian idiomatic phrases, I came up with so many I had to split this post in two.
But let me explain you better. A few weeks ago, I wrote a couple of posts about Italian idiomatic phrases which have something to do with food (here’s the first one and here’s the second one – with a downloadable pdf file for you to keep if you like).
I have received quite a few positive messages regarding that series of post and I thought it would be interesting – and useful – for you if I shared another list of idiomatic phrases.
I have given a thought about possible topics and I came up with my second favorite thing after food: animals! I love them a real lot and I think they make a perfect topic for idiomatic phrases because there are endless ways of saying that involve animals and some of them are really funny.
As it happens every time, as soon as I started researching I came up with a super huge list, which somehow I had to shorten and split into two.
Therefore, this is just a selection of Italian idiomatic phrases, based on the most used ones – and funniest ones too! Here come the first 25 phrases, you’ll find the rest of the list next week.
Let’s start with some of the most common Italian idiomatic phrases related to animals, shall we?
First of all, a list of some similes.
Muto come un pesce
Literal meaning: dumb as a fish
Furbo come una volpe
Literal meaning: sly as a fox
Cieco come una talpa
Literal meaning: blind as a mole
Bagnato come un pulcino
Literal meaning: wet as a chick
Matto come un cavallo
Literal meaning: crazy as a horse
Veloce come una lepre
Literal meaning: fast as a hare
Solo come un cane
Literal meaning: lonely as a dog
Lento come una lumaca
Literal meaning: slow as a snail
Testardo come un mulo
Literal meaning: stubborn as a mule
Magro come un’acciuga
Literal meaning: thin as an anchovy
Incavolata come una iena
Literal meaning: angry like a hyena
Viscido come un serpente
Literal meaning: slimy as a snake
Ciucco come un asino
Literal meaning: drunk as a donkey
Simpatico come un riccio nelle mutande
Literal meaning: nice as a hedgehog in your pant
Fortunato come un cane in chiesa
Literal meaning: lucky as a dog in a church
Actual meaning: dogs are not allowed in churches, so you are not so lucky if you are a dog and find yourself there
Curioso come una scimmia
Literal meaning: curious as a monkey
Noioso come una mosca
Literal meaning: annoying like a fly
Let’s now move to other kinds of sayings, now.
Essere una mosca bianca
Literal meaning: to be a white fly
Actual meaning: to be different from all the others, to be the only one who is different from the others
Non vola una mosca!
Literal meaning: not a single fly is flying
Actual meaning: it is super silent, there is no noise
In bocca al lupo!
Literal meaning: in the mouth of the wolf
Actual meaning: good luck!
In culo alla balena!
Literal meaning: in the ass of the whale
Actual meaning: good luck!
Specchietto per le allodole
Literal meaning: mirror for the larks
Actual meaning: a lure, a false attraction, a way to attract someone and cheat him/her
Versare lacrime di coccodrillo
Literal meaning: to pour crocodile’s tears
Actual meaning: to behave badly and then pretend you are sad for what you did
Prendere lucciole per lanterne
Literal meaning: to take fireflies for lanterns
Actual meaning: to misunderstand
A caval donato non si guarda in bocca
Literal meaning: you must not look into the mouth of a horse you received as a gift
Actual meaning: a gift is a gift, do not question it
Here’s the first part of Italian idiomatic phrases that are related to food. Don’t forget to check back next week for a second round!
I have prepared a pdf file with all the Italian idiomatic phrases you’ll find in this post. You can find it in Your Italian Toolbox, a section of Instantly Italy where you’ll find Italian learning materials. You can get access to it by subscribing here.
If you are interested in improving your Italian language skills, I’d suggest you check Chiacchieriamo, your way of chatting with an Italian without moving from home.
Chiacchieriamo is a Skype chat that helps you practice your Italian with a native speaker, gaining the confidence you need when speaking the language.
If you want to give it a try, you can request a 30-minute free chat, so that we can meet each other and see if you like the service.