Sbarcare il lunario

Sbarcare il lunario in Italian

Sbarcare il lunario
To make ends meet

Literal translationTo unload the moon almanac
MeaningTo be able to cover your basic living expenses
IPA pronunciation/zbarˈkaːre il luˈnaːrjo/

Where does this come from? Sbarcare il lunario can be translated as “to reach the goal of letting a year pass”. In this idiom, lunario means “year”. Sbarcare derives from barca, boat, and can also be translated as “bringing the boat to shore”.

Bringing a boat to shore means that you have made it through that year in spite of all the obstacles you may have faced. With time, sbarcare also took on the meaning of “to survive” with the meaning of “to arrive at destination”.

The lunario was a popular almanac that provided information on the phases of the moon, weather forecasts, country festivals, and fairs. Each page contained proverbs, sayings, poems, and pearls of wisdom.

Idioms with similar meanings are tirare a campare and tirare avanti la baracca.

woman trying to make ends meet on a notebook

For example, you can say…

Laura riesce a sbarcare il lunario con il suo lavoro part-time.
Laura manages to make ends meet with her part-time job

È stato difficile sbarcare il lunario dopo la perdita del lavoro, ma ce l’ho fatta.
Making ends meet was tough after losing my job, but I did it.

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