Calabrese: Magootz


New Member
English - US
My grandmother's cousin (102yo!) remembers people calling his uncle a "magootz" or "magutz." The family is from Amantea (Cosenza, Calabria). This was an uncle who borrowed money for boat fare, but ended up taking the boat to a different place. Either it was intentional, or he got confused.

Can anyone tell me what this word might be in Calabro or Italian? I thought maybe "magozzo" for magician, since he "magically" disappeared. Or maybe "muguzzare" - to grumble. Any ideas?

  • shawnee

    Senior Member
    English - Australian
    If in this pat of Italy there remain some Greek words then it may be derived from μαγκούφης - magoufi - unfortunate fellow > Turk vakıf - charitable foundation. I can easily see 'magoof(i)' developing into 'magutz' in the context given.