Da vs. di (stanza da bagno, carta di credito)

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Londoner06

Senior Member
US/English, Spanish
Buona sera!

I read previous blogs on di and da only to become more aware that they are no fast rules as to their usage.

I am trying to make sense of their use in these examples. Maybe the forum can shed some light as to the reasoning behind this particular usage:

stanza da bagno

sala da pranzo

sala di emergenza

I see that the first 2 are masculine, the last one is feminine, is that it?

Grazie,

Londoner06
 
  • Alberto77

    Senior Member
    Italian - Italy
    Ciao Londoner, no it's not linked to gender... right now I could not think about a rule, but "da" specify usually what is something dedicated to, habit we can also say, while "di" specify a caracteristic... if I'll have a better idea or explanation I'll let you know,
    ciao
    alb
     

    ElaineG

    Senior Member
    USA/English
    Ciao Londoner, no it's not linked to gender. Right now I can't think of a rule, but "da" specifies usually what is something is dedicated to, habit we can also say, while "di" specifies a characteristic. If I have a better idea or explanation, I'll let you know,
    ciao
    alb


    I think Alb is right, as far as I know there is no rule :( and you just have to learn it and get it wrong, over and over again.

    (She said from experience).
     

    mateintwo

    Senior Member
    Swedish - American English
    In one of the best Italian pop songs I’ve ever heard called Fotoromanzo (check it out on YouTube!), Gianna Nannini sings:

    Questo amore e' una camera a gas , questo amore e' una bomba all'hotel , questo amore e' un gelato al veleno.

    In these expressions can di or da be used to substitute a?
     

    nexus

    Senior Member
    italian, italy
    In one of the best Italian pop songs I’ve ever heard called Fotoromanza (check it out on YouTube!), Gianna Nannini sings:

    Questo amore e' una camera a gas , questo amore e' una bomba all'hotel , questo amore e' un gelato al veleno.

    In these expressions can di or da be used to substitute a?

    Camera a gas =gas chamber.
    Bomba all'hotel =bomb in the hotel.
    Gelato al veleno =poisoned ice-cream.
    Non credo che in questi casi a si possa sostituire con di o da, anzi ne sono praticamente certa.
     

    mateintwo

    Senior Member
    Swedish - American English
    Quindi dobbiamo imparare quando si usa non soltanto da o di ma anche la a per questo tipo di nome . Pazienza!. Come era detto su un’altra discussione: Pieta' per il poverino chi deve imparare l’italiano (o l’inglese).
     

    Cassidy's Mom

    Senior Member
    United States, English
    Ciao a tutti,

    Se qualcuno mi puó rispondere alla mia domanda, ne sarei molto grata.

    Perché si dice in italiano "carta di credito" e "cintura di sicurezza" e no "carta da credito" o "cintura da sicurezza"?

    Ho visto sul dizionario del forum che ci sono molti esempi quando si usa la preposizione "da". Eccone alcuni:

    buca da biliardo
    abbigliamento da lavoro
    albero da frutto
    borsa da donna
    animali da parco
    costume da bagno
    ferro da stiro
    Camera da letto
    orologio da polso

    Allora perche si usa "di" invece di "da" negli esempi "carta di credito" e "cintura di sicurezza"? Che cosa c'é di differente in questi esempi?

    Grazie in anticipo- ho fatto tanta fatica a capire questo tema!
    ]​
     

    Necsus

    Senior Member
    Italian (Italy)
    Ciao a tutti,

    se qualcuno potesse rispondere alla mia domanda, gliene ne sarei molto grata.

    Perché si dice in italiano "carta di credito" e "cintura di sicurezza" e non "carta da credito" o "cintura da sicurezza"?

    Ho visto sul dizionario del forum che ci sono molti esempi su quando si usa la preposizione "da". Eccone alcuni:

    buca da biliardo
    abbigliamento da lavoro
    albero da frutto
    borsa da donna
    animali da parco
    costume da bagno
    ferro da stiro
    Camera da letto
    orologio da polso

    Allora perche si usa "di" invece di "da" negli esempi "carta di credito" e "cintura di sicurezza"? Che cosa c'é di differente in questi esempi?

    Grazie in anticipo - faccio tanta fatica a capire questo concetto!
    I'd simply say because it is a genitive case, you are specifying that it is the credit card and no another one. But you're right, it's not simple at all to understand the use of prepositions in Italian. ;)
     

    MünchnerFax

    Senior Member
    Italian, Italy
    It's not easy to explain the difference I perceive. I'll try but I know I won't manage to. :(

    Di
    introduces a characteristic or a specification of the object.
    Cintura di sicurezza
    : a belt which improves safety.
    Carta di credito: a card which grants a credit.

    Da indicates the (often physical) destination or the goal of the object. In these occurrencies, it's similar to the English for (although you use compounds rather than this preposition).
    Abbigliamento da lavoro, clothing suitable for work
    Animali da parco, animals that live in a park
    Orologio da polso, a watch that you put onto the wrist.
    Ferro da stiro, an appliance made of iron which (only) serves the function of ironing.

    The line between the two cases is actually thinly drawn. I'm aware it's not easy for non natives to grasp this difference: in fact, the destination of an object is a characteristic of that object...

    Some comparisons:

    Albero di frutta
    - I think of a tree with a lot of red, juicy fruits on its branches.
    Albero da frutto - I think of a plant species which is interesting to the humanity because it produces fruits.

    Borsa di donna - A purse which belongs to an unknown woman (not very correct because the article una or a kind of specification of this woman is missing).
    Borsa da donna - A woman purse, a model of purse which is carried by women.

    Finally, a pun I made the other day with my friends after seeing one of the most boring, dull and trite movies ever:
    Un film di denuncia - A movie against the power, showing the director's committment on a certain issue.
    Un film da denuncia - So horrible a movie that it should be reported to the police and its director arrested! :p

    Sorry, I think I can't make it clearer than this. :( I hope it helps you anyway, but I'm afraid you'll just have to learn those expressions almost by heart and practice a lot, and give up looking for a logical explanation, as is often the case when learning foreign languages. ;)
     

    Cassidy's Mom

    Senior Member
    United States, English
    Thanks so much for your lengthly explanation and for taking on this difficult question, and also for your other informative examples. Thank you for comparing and contrasting the two prepositions, as it was most helpful. Your explanation is quite clear! Thank you for your time.
    Grazie mille,
    La mamma di Cassidy
     

    flaze

    Member
    English -UK
    It's not easy to explain the difference I perceive. I'll try but I know I won't manage to. :(

    Di
    introduces a characteristic or a specification of the object.
    Cintura di sicurezza: a belt which improves safety.
    Carta di credito: a card which grants a credit.

    Da indicates the (often physical) destination or the goal of the object. In these occurrencies, it's similar to the English for (although you use compounds rather than this preposition).
    Abbigliamento da lavoro, clothing suitable for work
    Animali da parco, animals that live in a park
    Orologio da polso, a watch that you put onto the wrist.
    Ferro da stiro, an appliance made of iron which (only) serves the function of ironing.

    The line between the two cases is actually thinly drawn. I'm aware it's not easy for non natives to grasp this difference: in fact, the destination of an object is a characteristic of that object...

    Some comparisons:

    Albero di frutta
    - I think of a tree with a lot of red, juicy fruits on its branches.
    Albero da frutto - I think of a plant species which is interesting to the humanity because it produces fruits.

    Borsa di donna - A purse which belongs to an unknown woman (not very correct because the article una or a kind of specification of this woman is missing).
    Borsa da donna - A woman purse, a model of purse which is carried by women.

    Finally, a pun I made the other day with my friends after seeing one of the most boring, dull and trite movies ever:
    Un film di denuncia - A movie against the power, showing the director's committment on a certain issue.
    Un film da denuncia - So horrible a movie that it should be reported to the police and its director arrested! :p

    Sorry, I think I can't make it clearer than this. :( I hope it helps you anyway, but I'm afraid you'll just have to learn those expressions almost by heart and practice a lot, and give up looking for a logical explanation, as is often the case when learning foreign languages. ;)

    Questa è stata un'ottima spiegazione :) Grazie!
     
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