Are you taking individual Italian classes in London and coming across lovely Italian idioms?

Well, I bet your individual Italian classes in London are just amazing: going through the Italian language and culture exposes you to several expressions used in the everyday language.

In Italy people love Idiomatic expressions: they summarize meanings that you can’t explain in a different way and make perfect sense, adding an authentic feeling to what you say.

Have you ever heard someone saying “cerco di sbarcare il lunario“? Even though you are learning Italian in London, it definitely might sound a bit obscure to you: we can translate it as “I try to keep body and soul together“, or “I try to make ends meet“.

Let’s see where it comes from!

The verb “sbarcare” in this context is used as “to get by”, whilst the word “lunario” refers to an ancient calendar or annual almanac quite popular in the countryside which used to include news about fairs and markets, weather forecasts, predictions for the future and much more.

So the figurative meaning of this expression comes from the idea of surviving with little money until the end of the year.

How can we use this Idiom?

Using Italian idioms might be difficult at the beginning as they are strongly linked to the cultural background: during your individual Italian classes in London you will definitely practice idioms in different ways and get more and more confident.

Here you can find some nice examples to go through!

Italian English
In questo periodo faccio due lavori per sbarcare il lunario. In this period I have two jobs to make ends meet.
Nel tempo libero Anna da ripetizioni di matematica: solo così riesce a sbarcare il lunario. In her free time Anna teaches maths private lessons: this is the only way to keep body and soul together.
Per sbarcare il lunario, mio fratello lavora fino a tardi. Just to make ends meet, my brother works until late.


Have a look at this idiom on our Pinterest board!

Do you know a similar expression in another language? We are very curious about that, let us know!