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Italian word of the day: 'Imbiancato'

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Italian word of the day: 'Imbiancato'
Photo: DepositPhotos
18:03 CET+01:00
Here's a word you might find useful with the wintry weather arriving in Italy today.

As freezing weather arrives in the south of Italy, we've seen some stunning photos of famous sights transformed by more than a slight dusting of snow.

From a snow-covered Mount Vesuvius to the cave city of Matera, southern Italy's already jaw-dropping landscapes are even more magical in this slightly unusual weather.

Matera in the snow today. Photo: Giuseppe Bartucci

Luckily, italians have a particular word to describe the phenomenon. 

Imbiancato is an adjective used to describe something that has been turned white, or diventato bianco.

We don't have a one-word equivalent for this in English - it would be something like 'enwhitened'.

Some dictionaries give 'whitewashed' as a translation, but it doesn't work here since we don't say that snow has "whitewashed" a place.

For example:

La neve ha imbiancato i sassi di Matera

The snow has turned Matera's Sassi white.

Vedemmo Vesuvio imbiancato

We saw Mount Vesuvius covered in snow

As if one cool word for being covered in snow wasn't enough, you could also use innevata, also meaning snowy or snow-covered.

l'intera città era innevata

The whole city was covered in snow

We think these are beautiful examples of how sometimes we express even the simplest thoughts completely differently in Italian than we would in English.

And of course, you can also say:

Sulla neve

In the snow

Coperto di neve

Covered in snow

So when you come across a magical Italian winter landscape, at least you won't be lost for words in Italian!

 
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