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  • Some of the new words he acquires are extremely curious, e. g., canabuldogga (= bulldog), pipe del gasso (= gas-pipe), coppetane (= ’ncuop+town = uptown), fruttistenne (= fruit-stand), sanemagogna (= son-of-agun), mezzo-barrista (= half-time bartender.)

    Appendix 2. Non-English Dialects in America. 5. Italian


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  • Ha!

    December 18, 2009

  • I heard this a lot growing up, usually jokingly though I can see how earlier generations were not as likely to use it that way... But I never saw it in print until I saw this:

    "How often we cursed Columbus

    who discovered this land of liberty!

    But he took Liberty

    because I don't see its fruit!

    Comes the policeman

    and he take everything

    If you speak you're arrested

    Keep your mouth shut ... Because for nothing

    they send you to the chair.

    —Carlo Ferrazzano, La Merica Sanemagogna (America Son-of-a-Gun)"

    Quoted in Jerre Mangione and Ben Morreale, La Storia: Five Centuries of the Italian American Experience (New York: HarperPerennial, 1992), 290

    I would never have guessed this is how it could be spelled.

    December 17, 2009