DECEMBER and CHRISTMAS IN FLORENCE: shopping and culture
Directions by car to Florence Hotel Il Guelfo Bianco
Outdoor walkings in Florence
  • DECEMBER and CHRISTMAS IN FLORENCE: shopping and culture
  • Directions by car to Florence Hotel Il Guelfo Bianco
  • Outdoor walkings in Florence


Min. reading

Survival hints for a conversation with a Florentine

Lesson #2

If you’ve already studied Lesson#1 you’ve already cracked the surface, if not, have a look at it now to learn the basics!


Tuscan dialect for dummies: advanced level!


Spring is the time of broad beans with pecorino cheese.  So remember this term, “baccelli”, which literally means broad beans. Try them with a glass or two (or three, or the whole bottle) of good wine! 🙂



This is the traditional name for the carriage of fireworks that is lit on Easter Sunday for the Scoppio del Carro (the explosion of the carriage). “Brindellone” is also used to refer to a tall, clumsy, dumb guy. I warn you, Tuscan humor is pretty sharp!



Popone means both “melon” and “dumb/naive person”. So watch out for the context: use it at the grocery stand in the market of San Lorenzo or Sant’Ambrogio, but don’t use it on the streets to address someone…

But where does this latter meaning come from? In Homer, the term “o pepones” (ὦ πέπονες) means “coward, idiot, meathead”.


After having so much baccelli, pecorino cheese and poponi, you would want to clean the floor with a “granata”. No, it is neither a pomegranate nor a grenade, enough of fruits and explosions! It just means broom. The name comes from the garnet-coloured cob of the sorghum plant used in the past to make brooms.



This is a big compliment, used both for people and for things. It means both “fun/brilliant” and “smart/clever”. Besides “ganzo”, you should also learn the expression “Gliè ganzo di nulla!”, meaning “He is hilarious”.



This rhyme literally means “Being like that Nardi mate: he was early, but ended up late”. According to the tradition, Nardi was the surname of a captain of one of the Crusade ships sailing from Pisa to Jerusalem in 1099: the ship arrived when Jerusalem had already been conquered.

We recommend you aren’t like that Nardi mate when you have to get a train or a flight to come to Florence. In fact, we have made it easy to organize your stay in Florence in advance by clicking here!



“To even steal steam from a schiacciata”: the “schiacciata” is a typical Florentine white flatbread pizza. This saying has two meanings: the first is negative and refers to an avid person, while the second refers to an astute person.

But who cares about steam? Make sure you try a fragrant schiacciata in Florence and discover all about Florentine street food.


And this is how we end our second lesson of Florentine dialect for dummies, amongst baccelli, pecorino cheese and schiacciatas.

Study hard, and don’t be a “bischero”!

Are you ready to organize your holiday to discover Florence and our sayings? Don’t hesitate to contact us at

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