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English Words of Italian Origin

These words came to us from Italian. Based on the definition, guess the word.
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: December 8, 2019
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First submittedMarch 14, 2013
Times taken52,440
Average score70.0%
Rating4.07
4:00
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Definition
Word
Hello or goodbye
Ciao
The type of cheese on pizza
Mozzarella
High-profile female singer
Diva
Where the fat ladies sing
Opera
Person who serves coffee drinks
Barista
Sauce made with basil and pine nuts
Pesto
Highest register of singing voice
Soprano
Vandalism or art,
depending on your perspective
Graffiti
People who take unwelcome
photos of celebrities
Paparazzi
It's longer than a short story,
but shorter than a novel
Novella
Definition
Word
Large, hairy type of spider
Tarantula
Opposite of "piano" in terms of the
loudness of music
Forte
Orchestra conductor; literally "master"
Maestro
Type of nut with green flesh
Pistachio
Sharp knife or high heel
Stiletto
Artificial cave, often with water features
Grotto
Totalitarian, right-wing political
movement
Fascism
Type of green squash also known
as a courgette
Zucchini
Like a flute, but smaller
Piccolo
"Pick me up" dessert made
with ladyfingers
Tiramisu
64 Comments
+18
Level ∞
Jul 9, 2020
We received about 50 annoying comments debating whether fascism is left-wing or right-wing. These comments have now been deleted.

My clue was not intended to be offensive to any current political ideology.

Hateful ideologues are found on both sides of the political spectrum. That said, fascism is generally understood to be of "right-wing" origin. Other equally-destructive ideologies such as Stalinism are usually considered "left-wing".

JetPunk is not a forum for political debate. Any further comments on this topic risk deletion and banning. Thank you for your understanding.

+1
Level 45
Apr 18, 2013
Missed pesto >.< 19/20
+5
Level 58
Apr 18, 2013
Could prima donna not count for "high profile female singer"?
+3
Level ∞
Apr 18, 2013
Sure, but it's two words, not one.
+6
Level 77
Apr 22, 2013
I thought you wanted a PERSON...so i put Madonna
+1
Level 48
Oct 29, 2017
I also tried prima donna repeatedly, didn't notice all the answers were single words. It doesn't help me that we have a 'Primmadonna Casino' down the road from here.
+2
Level 94
Jun 30, 2018
actually, in Italian the word "primadonna" as a single expression can be found, even if not so often.
+2
Level 57
Nov 3, 2015
Pistachio! Can't believe I didn't get that!
+3
Level 70
Nov 4, 2015
Zucchini is an American word of Italian origin. It isn't used in proper English
+9
Level 75
Jun 30, 2018
What rubbish.
+3
Level 68
Jan 15, 2019
garbage?
+4
Level 75
May 1, 2020
An attempt at starting an argument... Was the whole fascism left or right brouhaha not enough for you?!
+1
Level 65
Apr 13, 2023
Ye' right propa wanka'!!

Bostonese is what the proper peeps wrought 😉

20/20

+1
Level 47
Aug 21, 2023
Correct. Zucchini is not English. Neither does tiramisu use lady fingers. It uses sponge fingers. Okra is lady's fingers.
+3
Level 45
May 11, 2016
20/20 with 1:53 to go. I'm a maestro with Italian words.
+3
Level 50
Jul 3, 2016
Should accept pistaCChio and grottA
+8
Level 59
Oct 30, 2017
Why accept words that don't exist in English? What even is a grotta? It certainly isn't what fits the definition given in the quiz.
+1
Level 60
Aug 20, 2023
To be fair, this isn't about spelling, so misspellings are usually accepted. Pistacchio is reasonable to me.
+1
Level 58
Jan 30, 2024
Pistacchio is fair because that's the Italian spelling
+1
Level 65
Apr 13, 2023
Learned from you. Thank you
+1
Level 49
Feb 9, 2017
Can you accept 'tiramasu' please?
+2
Level 48
Oct 29, 2017
There is no such thing as 'tiramasu'. The correct answer is tiramisu.
+14
Level 84
Nov 24, 2017
Whoa, there. Might want to dismount from that high horse there, Sparky. "Tiramasu" is simply a misspelling. And an understandable one, at that. There are far more egregiously-misspelled words that are accepted on JetPunk. It sounds like a reasonable request to me.
+9
Level 84
Nov 24, 2017
If you handed your local baker a note with a list of goodies you wanted, and one of them was "tiramasu", do you really think he would have no idea what you're talking about?
+1
Level 60
Aug 20, 2023
You look like you're talking to yourself again since they deleted their posts.
+1
Level 23
Jun 28, 2018
Awesome
+1
Level 65
Jun 30, 2018
Is there a glitch? I got 18 but it said I got 19!?
+7
Level 75
Jun 30, 2018
I don't think a grotto has to be exclusively artificial.
+5
Level 75
Jul 5, 2020
I thought the same thing and looked it up. According Wikipedia it can be natural or artificial.
+1
Level 76
Apr 17, 2024
Correct.
+1
Level 68
Oct 23, 2018
Can't you allow Groto for Grotto?
+5
Level 68
Jan 15, 2019
Parmesan and gorgonzola both fit the cheese clue. I tried a long time figuring out how the english write parmesan (they pronounce it funny imo, but that's besides the point ;) )

When that didnt work i tried gorgonzola (before trying more parmesan and even feta)

also falsetto, couldnt that fit the clue singing voice clue aswell? a soprano singing in falsetto sings even higher.

+3
Level 67
Aug 20, 2023
RE ralsetto: Technically falsetto and soprano are in different categories. Correct me if I’m wrong, but falsetto is a “register” and soprano is a vocal “range” or “type.” Although, now that I reread the hint, it does use the word register, so perhaps the clue/answer should be changed.
+1
Level 71
Aug 21, 2023
Parmesan, and Gorgonzola, especially, don't fit the clue with the definite article there. If you describe one type of cheese as the cheese on pizza, you're referring to mozzarella.

There are technicalities about some types of cheese sometimes being on pizza, or maybe that mozzarella as referred to usually in English often isn't mozzarella but fiordilatte, which is commonly used on pizzas, too.

But the clue as written is pretty clear, and doesn't need changing. It's a clue for guessing: not an unambiguous, complete and authoritatively correct description.

+1
Level 49
Jan 12, 2020
Don't forget to add Virtuoso also
+3
Level 60
Aug 20, 2023
This isn't meant to be comprehensive.
+1
Level 61
Jul 5, 2020
What about 'latte'? The definition could be 'A type of coffee made with espresso and steamed milk.'
+1
Level 68
Jul 5, 2020
*vandalism or art depending on whether or not the "artist" has permission and/or owns surface on which they are painting. (Some graffiti is beautiful, but I personally could do without the kind people leave on bathroom walls...)
+2
Level 54
Jul 6, 2020
"our butts touched the same seat, we are brothers"
+1
Level 68
Aug 22, 2023
Whether or not someone has permission determines whether it's vandalism. Whether or not it is art is a whole different question. If you paint the Mona Lisa somewhere you don't have permission, it's vandalism, regardless of whether or not it's art. If you give me permission to paint on any wall, it won't be vandalism - but it probably also won't be art!
+1
Level 54
Jul 6, 2020
can you add archapeligo as an alternate?
+3
Level 48
Jul 6, 2020
"Where the fat ladies sing"

Not only this is inacurate, this is utterly rude.

+6
Level 77
Apr 3, 2022
Is it rude because not all opera singers are fat, or is it rude to call obese people fat?
+1
Level 78
Aug 20, 2023
I got the answer straight away because of this clue!
+1
Level 76
Apr 17, 2024
It's not calling opera singers fat, but referencing a known saying. But sure, let's preemptively assume it's rudeness. >__>
+3
Level 48
Jul 8, 2020
What is wrong with just learning the right spelling of all these words? You didn't ace the quiz but you learned something.
+1
Level 60
Aug 20, 2023
Usually it's not required to spell correctly. Especially important for people who have difficulties spelling (e.g. dyslexia).
+2
Level 63
Dec 13, 2020
"Where the fat ladies sing"

This is purely ignorant and extremely rude. There are million ways to guess "opera", you didn't have to go with such an irrelevant one

+7
Level 73
Mar 19, 2022
... sounds like someone didn't get the reference.
+2
Level 81
Aug 20, 2023
It's always amazing the things people will find to complain about
+2
Level 40
Jan 10, 2022
grotta is right, grotto not.
+3
Level 89
Aug 20, 2023
Grotta might be right in Italian, but that's not what this quiz is about.
+2
Level 78
Aug 20, 2023
This quiz is in English.
+2
Level 77
Apr 3, 2022
The "political movement" stumped me. Had it read "form of government" I would have gotten it. Maybe use both in the clue, separated by a slash?
+3
Level 68
Aug 20, 2023
Fascism isn't really a specific form or structure of government though, it's more about ideology
+2
Level 67
May 5, 2022
Took me a while to get pistachio - found the use of the word 'flesh' misleading - I associate this with something, well, fleshy! The outer, fleshy part of a pistachio is a pinky red colour. Nut with green kernal or just green nut would be a better clue.
+1
Level 71
Aug 21, 2023
"Meat" would be quite correct but it's still an unusual enough usage that it would probably throw even more people off (but "nut meat" is certainly a correct way to refer to it).

It's not that common to have to distinguish between the part of the nut that is internal and edible and the whole thing--the most common term is "nut" for both.

+1
Level 48
Jun 24, 2022
Pistacchio, with 2 C
+1
Level 67
Aug 20, 2023
The the coffee question I tried solicitor.
+1
Level 57
Aug 20, 2023
Sopranino?
+1
Level 78
Aug 20, 2023
that's an instrument, not a singing voice
+1
Level 65
Aug 20, 2023
For a second I thought that tiramisu contained okra (or ladyfingers)...

Turns out ladyfingers is also the name of a spongecake :P

+1
Level 67
Aug 27, 2023
Although I got the answer straight away, I question whether "ciao" is an English word borrowed from Italian or rather an Italian word that many English speakers expect others to understand.
+1
Level 76
Aug 30, 2023
Fascism is second to last in correct answers? That's depressing.