Word of the Week: Tavolo

Our new word of the week is : TAVOLO which in Italian means “table”.  But did you now that UN TAVOLO in Italian has a slightly different meaning than UNA TAVOLA?  Un TAVOLO (masculine  word ending in – O)  is a piece of furniture; UNA TAVOLA (feminine word ending in – A) is word with feelings included.  Maybe, this is not by chance ?!!

IL Tavolo dell’ufficio, della sala o della cucina …ma La Tavola is the table where friends and familiy sit around for a meal together, to play cards, a table game, it is the place where children sit for their homework and grown-ups get together to discuss important family issues.

A Tavola ! it’s the expression used to call everybody when lunch or dinner is ready. It’s a word that comes to  mind “with a table cloth on” (la tovaglia) . Italians rarely eat (or maybe  Never? Mai?) without una tovaglia sulla tavola.  The small place mats, in Italy,  are generally used only for breakfast (per colazione) and they are called tovagliette americane (clearly not an Italian tradition!)

Setting the table for a meal is APPARECCHIARE o PREPARARE LA TAVOLA .  To clear the table is : SPARECCHIARE.  

Sedersi a tavola is a very pleasant habit , something worth doing while relaxing.   Mangiare in Piedi is, for me, one of the most barbaric habit, something to avoid as plague – da evitare come la peste!

I also hate talking about politics, work and business a tavola;  it should be banned : Vietato parlare di politica o lavoro a tavola.  As the famous  Commissario Montalbano by Camilleri says: “A tavola meglio il silenzio. Quando mangio non parlo .”  For me, parlare va bene ma solo di cose piacevoli

Useful expressions:

Una bella tavolata – a nice group of friends eating together

Tavoletta – small board

Tavolino – another way to call the Table

“A tavola non si invecchia” _ way of saying meaning that sitting at the table for a meal is good for your health

Amare la buona tavola – to be fond of eating

Andare a tavoletta ( in macchina) – to drive very fast ( press the accelerator)

Vincere a tavolino – to win by appeal

2 Comments Add yours

  1. nadia says:

    Such a lovely thing to read!

    1. Chiara says:

      Thank you! Happy you like it 🙂

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