Un cane sta dormendo sotto il portico.

English Translation

A dog is sleeping on the porch.

That is another puzzling sentence, especially under the “preposition” headline.

First I thought that somebody mixed up “sul” and “sotto il” but no!
“Sotto il portico”" and “on the porch” is indeed the same place.
However, you cannot call that a translation, because as far as I understand it, a “portico” is actually the roof of a porch.
So what, sunny country or not, is the italian word for a porch but not the roof? Is “veranda” a false friend?

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Interesting question, but I don’t think we have a specific word for the area covered by the “portico”.

Maybe “sottoportico”? It is not very common, and I just looked it up, apparently it is used in the Venice area.

If it is in an urban context, we may call it “marciapiede” (sidewalk, pavement). It is not very common to have a porch in front of the house, like it is seen in many US movies.

I would suggest to just remember the difference in use in Italian, it is just common to refer to an area under a porch roof as “sotto il portico”.

I don’t think “veranda” would work, we call “veranda” a balcony or a part of the building that is technically “outside” but has been at least partially closed by windows.


Ciao @mike-lima You also say *sotto la pioggia (pe cammino sotto la pioggia) in UK we say *in the rain. I think it is always helpful to “think Italian” with many of these sentences as not everything can be easily translated.

I use the above example as it’s one of my favourites! :slight_smile: