Paesano

As a nation state, Italy has emerged only in 1871. Until then the country was politically divided into a large number of independant cities, provinces and islands. The currently available evidences point out to a dominant Etruscan, Greek and Roman cultural influence on today's Italians.
AngelaGrace56
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Paesano

Postby AngelaGrace56 » 14 Jun 2014, 00:14

How would the word/name “paesano” be used today in Italy?

My understanding, when growing up, was that if my parents referred to someone as “paesano” it would mean that the person was from their home town (stessa paese). Is that right? (I sometimes get muddled up with Saponarese and “pure” Italian, so it could be that it was a Saponarese word that sounded like “paesano”?)

I've just been researching farmers and have come across the word “paesano” as also meaning “peasant”? (I doubt very much that my folks would be referring to their friends as “peasants” - although dad liked to tease?).

"Paese" I always understood as meaning, town or city. It looks like it can also mean country, village?

Any feedback would be helpful and interesting.

Angela

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Tessa78
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Re: Paesano

Postby Tessa78 » 15 Jun 2014, 18:08

Paesano = fellow countryman/countrywoman :-)

T.

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PippoM
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Re: Paesano

Postby PippoM » 16 Jun 2014, 09:32

Tessa gave a correct definition of "paesano" and its meaning. But, actually, the right Italian word for what our emigrants meant with "paesano" is "compaesano", that means "of the same village".
And yes, "paese" means "village", but also "country". In fact, Italia is also called "il Bel Paese" from a popular work by Antonio Stoppani of the XIX century:

http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Il_Bel_Paese

and also recalling verses from Dante and Petrarca.
Giuseppe "Pippo" Moccaldi

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AngelaGrace56
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Re: Paesano

Postby AngelaGrace56 » 17 Jun 2014, 06:22

Tessa and Pippo, thank you both for your replies.

I don't recall ever hearing the word "compaesano" before but I have found it now in my dictionary.

Thank you again.

Angela :)


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