British Vs. American English: Gas

Come si dice benzina in inglese? Non è semplice rispondere poiché in British English si dice petrol, in American English si dice gas. Gas, però, ha anche altri significati…

Mark Worden (Standard British accent)
Gas is one of those words which has different meanings in British and American English. In British English the meaning is the same as in Italian and therefore “natural gas” is the correct translation of “gas naturale.” But in American English the word gas is used to mean “benzina,” which the British call “petrol.” And so, if you “run out of gas,” (1) you have run out of petrol, and this can also be used figuratively, meaning that you have run out of energy. But the word gas has another meaning in both British and American English. If someone or something is “a gas,” then he, she or it is very amusing (2) or very entertaining. And the Rolling Stones fans among you may recall the song lyrics (3): “Jumping Jack Flash, it’s a gas, gas, gas!”

1. run out of: finire, rimanere senza
2. amusing: divertente
3. lyrics: testo, parole

Vuoi saperne di più sulle differenze tra American English e British English? Vuoi approfondire la tua conoscenza della cultura americana? Corri in edicola! Dal 24 agosto al 24 ottobre 2017 trovi: I Want You to Speak American, uno speciale di Speak Up interamente dedicato all’inglese americano.

Sul sito di Speak Up, invece, è sempre disponible la prima edizione: Let’s Speak American!

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