Piccola Intervista

Word of the Day: Mammone

Something you notice right away in Italy is the power of the Italian mom. Not to say that other cultures do not have the typical ‘mom’ figure as well (e.g. my own Jewish mother), but for some reason, the mammas in Italy are a whole other level. Specifically when it comes to their sons.

Mammone, coming from the Italian, mamma, or mom, means mamma’s boy (or mama’s boy). Having lived in Rome for two years, I have met my fair share of mamma’s boys, or rather, I have met very few non-mamma’s boys- speaking only of Italians…
What are mammoni (plural of mammone) like, you ask? Well… they must always be home for dinner, never do their own laundry, wear matchy matchy kid-like PJs, never make their own coffee, must always be home for Sunday lunch, never iron…just to give a few examples.

Mammoni  are always great to poke fun at, but one has to remember that it is not common for Italians to move out of their houses at 18, like it is in most other countries. Italians do not generally attend universities in cities far from their hometowns, and more practically, living on their own is not something they can generally afford (boo Italian economy). Therefore, it is (sorta) understandable that Italian boys become super coddled by their mamma’s, and don’t gain true independence until they are married (hopefully).
But let’s not forget, no one will ever compare to their mamma’s!

Disclaimer- no offense to all mamma’s boys out there! 

8 thoughts on “Word of the Day: Mammone

  1. My name is Michael Mammone and I live in Jersey. While this article may be true to most italians; most Europeans and latin cultures are somewhat similar. The name Mammone means different things in different languages as well. As for myself im a non mammas boy, but the power of the italian mother is true. They always want to make sure that there sons are well taken care of as do most good mothers. They do try to keep there sons or whole family rather all in tact and not stray far away. I guess one can call it good family morales or whatever. All in all some italians aren’t mammas boys, are very independent and self suffcient. Thanks for the article never saw my name being used for something like this.

    • That could be true, but from my experience of having lived and traveled in different countries, AND growing up in a mixed culture family, nothing prepared me for Italy!!! I don’t think I’ve met one that’s NOT in the 17 years that I’ve lived here 🙂

  2. your point of view is accurate and let me add one thing: when they say me “italian mammone” I always reply: “don’t blame me, blame my mum!”
    It’s ironic but true at the same time, because in a proper tight relationship, there must be always two sides involved between a couple of human beings, whatever we are talking about (friendship, love story, wedding or mum/son

    • Completely agree that there are always two sides involved in a relationship – and I think that in the relationship between some Italian boys and their mamme, there is a third party – that is, the Italian economy. If Italians had more opportunity/job security/made better wages, they wouldn’t be forced to live at home for so long. That being said, we hope you read the article in the spirit in which it was written – as a joke, as we deeply admire and respect Italian family and culture! Have a great evening, Finn!

  3. Translating an article about Italian Man and I found this “term”. I have to say it’s very interesting and thank you very much for your explanation. Have a great day!

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