Archivio dell'autore: Tony

Informazioni su Tony

Born and raised in Malaysia between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. Educated at Wycliffe College in Stonehouse, Gloucestershire, England. Living in the foothills of Mount Etna since 1982 and teaching English at Catania University since 1987.

Listen to your heart

Verbi inglesi che si avvalgono (o no) di “preposizioni dipendenti”

Sono tanti i verbi inglesi che si avvalgono di una preposizione dipendente, cioè richiedono nella normalità l’utilizzo di una preposizione che fa da legame tra il verbo e il complemento. Secondo al costrutto utilizzato, però, un verbo non sempre fa ricorso alla sua preposizione dipendente e a volte fa ricorso a preposizioni diverse. Purtroppo non esiste una regola per l’uso delle preposizioni dipendente e possono verificarsi tre possibili situazioni che rendono la questione ancora più problematica:

  1. Il verbo inglese richiede l’utilizzo di una preposizione dipendente ma quello italiano no;
  2. Il verbo inglese non richiede l’utilizzo di una preposizione dipendente ma quello italiano si;
  3. Il verbo inglese richiede una preposizione dipendente diversa da quella italiana.

Vediamo alcuni esempi emblematici di queste diverse problematiche.



  • Do you listen to music when you’re in the car?
  • Ascolti la musica quando sei in macchina?


  • Bob is looking at the timetable in the station.
  • Bob sta guardando la tabella oraria nella stazione.


  • We waited for Jane outside the restaurant.
  • Abbiamo aspettato Jane fuori dal ristorante.

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Pubblicato da su 23 marzo 2017 in Appunti grammaticali, prepositions, use of verbs, Verbi


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A glass of water


[per sapere il significato delle parole evidenziate,
passaci sopra con il mouse senza cliccare]


A psychologist walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As she raised a glass of water, everyone thought she was going to ask the “half empty or half full” question. Instead, with a smile on her face, she enquired:
“How heavy is this glass of water?”
All kinds of answers came from around the room.
She replied, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, it’s not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my arm. If I hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.”
She continued, “The stresses and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed and incapable of doing anything.”
It’s important to remember to let go of your stress. As early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don’t carry them through the evening and into the night.
Remember to put the glass down.

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Pubblicato da su 18 marzo 2017 in Inglese in azione, read


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Omega 3

Riesci a cogliere il doppio senso?



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Pubblicato da su 10 marzo 2017 in funny pictures, Humour inglese


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Do you fancy a sandwich?


[per sapere il significato delle parole evidenziate in rosso,
passaci sopra con il mouse senza cliccare]
[le parole evidenziate in blu sono dei link per ulteriori informazioni]

Everybody knows what a sandwich is: a bit of food – traditionally cold meat and perhaps some cheese – tucked in between two slices of bread. But where does the name sandwich come from? Well, the story goes that the sandwich was the brainchild of a certain John Montagu (1718-1792), the 4th Earl of Sandwich, a prominent statesman and staunch supporter of the Patriot Whigs, a political faction strongly opposed to the government of Robert Walpole in the first half of the 18th century. Apart from his lifelong dedication to politics, John Montagu was also a very keen gambler who spent long hours at the card table. Such was his passion for cards – in particular cribbage – that he did not want to abandon the card table even when it was time for a meal. He cleverly resolved this problem by ordering his servants to fetch him some slices of cold meat between two slices of bread. In this way he was able to continue paying cards without needing a knife and fork and without getting his fingers greasy. His fellow players, impressed with his idea, also began to order, “the same as Sandwich,” and so the sandwich was born.


John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich
by Thomas Gainsborough

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Pubblicato da su 6 marzo 2017 in Inglese in azione, read


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Do you know everything about “all”?

Sai tutto di all?


ALL = tutto / tutto quello che

Quando si tratta del aggettivo/pronome all, il problema non è tanto il significato, alquanto semplice, ma l’uso, e soprattutto, la sua collocazione all’interno della frase. Prima di esplorare i principali modi in cui viene usato all in inglese, bisogna premettere una cosa importante: il fatto che nell’inglese parlato di ogni giorno, a differenza dell’italiano, all non viene usato molto come pronome, tranne in alcune frasi preconfezionate come “all is well“. La tendenza in questi casi e di usare i due pronomi comuni everybody (ognuno) e everything (ogni cosa). Poiché questo punto è spesso fonte di errore, vediamo alcuni esempi prima di proseguire, partendo dall’italiano. Teniamo presente che everybody e everything sono sempre 3° persona singolare:

  • Tutti sanno della sua promozione.
  • Everybody knows about his promotion.
  • Abbiamo messo tutto nel portabagagli.
  • We’ve put everything in the boot.
  • Non c’era tempo per parlare con tutti.
  • There wasn’t time to talk to everybody.
  • Bob ha venduto tutto ed è partito per il Brasile.
  • Bob sold everything and left for Brazil.

Per capire se in inglese ci vuole everybody o everything, basta vedere se nell’italiano si può sostituire tutto/tutti con ognuno/ogni cosa.

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Pubblicato da su 2 marzo 2017 in adjectives, Appunti grammaticali, pronouns


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Quiz Time


[grammar link]

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Pubblicato da su 23 febbraio 2017 in Palestra, quiz time


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Looking at life


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passaci sopra con il mouse senza cliccare]

A young couple moved into a new neighbourhood. The first morning, while they were eating breakfast, the young woman watched her neighbour hanging her clothes out to dry.
“Her laundry doesn’t look very clean,” she said to her husband. “She obviously doesn’t know how to wash clothes properly. Perhaps she needs a better soap powder.”
Her husband looked at her but said nothing.
During the weeks that followed, every time her neighbour hung her clothes out to dry, the young woman watched her and made the same comments.
One morning, about a month later, the young woman was surprised to see a nice, clean line of washing hanging outside her neighbour’s house.
“Look!” she said to her husband. “Our neighbour has finally learnt how to wash her clothes properly! I wonder who taught her.”
Actually,” replied her husband, finally speaking out, “I  got up very early this morning and cleaned our windows.”
And so it is with life. What we see when we watch other people depends very much on the clarity of the window through which we look.

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Pubblicato da su 20 febbraio 2017 in Inglese in azione, read


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