Italian Slang: A

Italian Slang Dictionary: intro A B C D E F G I L M N O P Q R S T U V X Z

Accidente, un

[ah-chee-DEN-tay] A darn thing, usually used in the negative, as in Non mi ricordo un’accidente – I don’t recall a thing. In normal useage, an accident (as with a car) is un incidente.

QT adds: Ti venisse un accidente – “May you have an accident,” an ill-wish which apparently refers more to serious illness (heart attack, stroke, etc.).


[ah-chee-DEN-ti] A mild expletive, in a league with drat, darn, heck.


[ah-pretz-a-MEN-toe] Not a rude word, this translates roughly as “appreciation” or “comment”, but it’s used most often in apprezzamenti pesanti (pesanti = “heavy”) for the kind of “appreciative” comment made to a woman that would cause her husband, boyfriend, etc., to react angrily. Such comments are often followed, in the news reports, by violence.


[ar-ra-PAR-ray] To become sexually excited.


The graffiti scribbled on this poster says: “Would you get hot (ti arraparesti) if this girl was your daughter? – This is too much. –”


[ah-TAHK-ka-bot-TONE-ee] Literally a “stick-to-buttons”. A long-winded bore. Someone who “grabs you by the lapel” and won’t let go. This term is not particularly rude, except to the person to whom you apply it!

4 thoughts on “Italian Slang: A”

  1. Deirdre suggested I post this here in case someone can help to solve a family linguistic riddle. My father and uncle who are both deceased had a mother who was born in Palermo at the turn of the century and spoke Italian with a Palermitano dialect. After my father died, I was visiting my uncle who remembered a scatalogical rhyme his mother used to say to both of the little boys when they lost their teeth. It is crude so I apologize in advance. He wrote it down for me as:

    Scangolatto sensa denti
    Bac il ghulo dei pesenti
    I pesenti si giraro
    É la faccia ti cacharo!

    He said it translated roughly into:

    Toothless one,
    Kiss the peasant’s ass
    He turned around
    And in your face he did poop!

    I realize it is crude and doggerel but what I’m curious about is whether it is a well known folk- type saying that others in Palermo or Sicily learned growing up. I don’t know Italian but this doesn’t translate in any of the standard translation tools which leads me to believe either my uncle forgot how to spell in Italian (he was pretty proficient in Italian so I don’t think that’s it) or whether this was an accurate remembrance of a special local Sicilian dialect. (I realize the accent over the “E” in the last line is backwards, but I couldn’t find the other on my keyboard) The fact that he and my Dad would gleefully and devilishly recite this poem in Italian made me think that it played a part in their cultural upbringing which is why it is of interest to find out more about it. Any insight anyone could give me would be wonderful. Many thanks in advance…….. Bill Morelli

  2. Sdentato senza denti
    Bacia il culo dei presenti ( Not peasant but present at that time)
    I presenti si girano
    E la faccia ( Viso) ti cacarono

    I’m Italian

  3. Tony– Thank you very much for your reply. Is this a poem that is known in Italian slang? Does it originate in Sicily? Anything you can tell me about it would be appreciated. Grazie mille! Bill

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