Word(s) of the Day: Il and Lo

by Luke Archer

This is not strictly about the words il and lo themselves. In an everyday context they are simple articles, generally meaning ‘it’ or ‘the’. However, I learnt today that if two people are walking together, one tall, one short, you can say ‘articolo il‘. As there is a little person (an ‘i’) and a tall person (an ‘l’). To say ‘articolo lo‘, then, has a guessable meaning: a tall ‘l’ and a short, fat ‘o’.

I love this pair of phrases, and wish there was an English equivalent. If, on the off-chance, a little person is walking alongside a person with their arms sticking outwards, I could say ‘ha! article it’. Might be waiting for a while. And would probably keep it to myself as well.