Language Lunedi’ – False Friends

False friends within languages happens when words from two languages seem the same, but have different meanings.  Sometimes the confusion can be a little embarrassing.

For today’s lesson, we will cover a few of these words.

Keep in mind, this is just a selection of words, but there are many!


Buona giornata!


annoiare                               to annoy                                                              to bore

confetti                                 small pieces of colored paper                          candied almonds

delusione                             delusion                                                                disappointment

estate                                    estate                                                                     summer

fabbrica                                fabric                                                                    factory

firma                                     firm                                                                       signature

grosso                                   gross                                                                     big

lunatica                                lunatic                                                                  moody

*(one of my favorites, because sometimes, when I am moody, I feel a bit like a lunatic!)

morbid0                                morbid                                                                soft

*(made  for a funny first conversation at the fabric store!  I thought she sales woman was saying the fabric was morbid because it was a dark brown color)

parenti                                 parents                                                                 relatives

pavimento                           pavement                                                             floor

preservativo                        preservative                                                        condom

*(another favorite…everyone was laughing at me when I tried to compliment Italian food as compared with American food, saying it seemed the Italians used less condoms!)

sensibile                              sensible                                                                 sensitive

*(In the early days, my husband used to  repeatedly tell me how sensibile I was.  Ha, ha, ha…I could not understand WHY he would think I was so sensible, because I don’t view myself as so sensible….a little lunatica maybe…but sensible????  )

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12 Comments on “Language Lunedi’ – False Friends

  1. laugh out lound funny – maybe you should include a warning not to read while I’m at work!
    I love this new addition to the site so i cna get my vocabulary down.

  2. Oh boy – I know I’ve done this a million times. This may not be exactly the same thing you are talking about but I remember how everyone was talking about “lengua” at the table, and I thought they were talking about languages. Meanwhile, I munch on what I thought were mushrooms. Turns out the “lengua” everyone was talking about was the tongue I was eating! Ewww!

    • Oh my gosh Lyn! The EXACT same thing with me and “lingua” with Gracie! Ha, ha, ha…I thought they were talking about how great Gracie was with the languages, and instead it was how great that tongue appetizer was! Yes…”ewwww”

      • That’s my other problem! Half the time when I try to say something in Italian, I say it in Spanish instead, and vice versa. Grrrr. How funny you did the same. Doesn’t sound like you actually ate it like I did. Who mistakes tongue for mushrooms?

      • Errr….YES! I WAS eating it…..but it did not look like mushrooms to me! ha, ha, ha….you are funny. I thought it was some kind of regular meat…and I liked it too!…and even asked for more! But it while I was waiting for the seconds that the conversation about how fab Gracie was at the “lingua” that I started putting it together. I did not have seconds….

  3. Well done! It is a great idea to add something about Italian language. Many people fancy learning Italian just for its sound and as it reminds them of holidays and sunshine.
    The topics on your blog are really interesting Diana!
    Ciao X

  4. Pingback: Language Lunedi’ – Conjugating the Verb “To Be” | Vino Vita Viaggi

  5. Pingback: Language Lunedi’ – Tech Talk | Vino Vita Viaggi

  6. Very funny indeed! Not a false friend (unless you’re the proud owner of huge imagination) but my favorite Italian word must be francobolli. 😉

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