Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Speakout Advanced p 16. Mediterranean Tales. Venice. Extra Listening

Tape 192 h2’50

Writer and journalist Irma Kurtz takes a journey around the Mediterranean, following in the path of Mark Twain's The Innocent Abroad. This edition of the BBC 4 programme explores the city of Venice, where Irma meets crime novelist Donna Leon, walks out with Casanova scholar Maurice Agosti and discovers the true life of a gondolier.

Fill in the gaps with a word or phrase.

1.            Venice, wonder of the world, is her first Italian _____________ as she follows Mark Twain around the Mediterranean.
2.            Venice is a handmade, manmade city ___________ watery nature.
3.            There is a ___________of characteristic sarcasm in The Innocents Abroad, Mark Twain’s chronicle
4.            Take one look and fall in love as never before: overwhelming, ______________, supernatural first love.
5.            The ________ Mr Twain- himself a Venice virgin- fell hard.
6.            Mark Twain: Narrow streets, vast __________ marble palaces, no dry land visible anywhere and no sidewalks worth mentioning.
7.            Mark Twain: If you want to go to church, to the theatre or to a restaurant, you must call a gondola. It must be a paradise for _________, for man has no use for legs here.
8.            Donna Leon: It’s like living on a ___________- it’s all beautiful but real.
9.            Donna Leon: It’s a constant assault of beauty to which a person becomes a little blinded. It’s a constant  __________ joy to live here because everything one looks at is beautiful.
10.         Dona Leon: Venetians are ______________ proud of this city and its traditions.
11.         Dona Leon: Venetians don’t ______________ how glorious and beautiful Venice is.
12.         Lord Byron named one of the bridges the Bridge of ___________.
13.         Irma Kurtz: I went for a little ___________ on my own and instead of finding myself in a magical place with people living and doing things, I found myself in St Mark’s Square.
14.         Irma Kurtz: I got off the ______________, I got off the canals and I was back in the Campo Santa Margarita.
15.         When in Venice you must pay _____________ for the most romantic boat ride on the planet.

KEY:

1.            landfall

Landfall:  (literary) the land that you see or arrive at first after a journey by sea or by air:
After three weeks they made landfall on the coast of Ireland.




2.            at odds with

Be at odds (with sth): to be different from sth, when the two things should be the same. Conflict. E.g. These findings are at odds with what is going on in the rest of the country.




3.            touch



4.            ravishing

Ravishing extremely beautiful. Gorgeous. E.g. A ravishing blonde




5.            wry
 Wry: /raɪ/ amusing in a way that shows irony. Sp. irónico. E.g. a wry comedy about family life. A wry comment. Wry humour.

fall hard for - To become instantly and/or intensely infatuated with.





6.            gloomy

Gloomy: nearly dark, or badly lit in a way that makes you feel sad. Depressing. E.g. a gloomy room/atmosphereIt was a wet and gloomy day.




7.            cripples

Cripple: (old-fashioned or offensive. People now use disabled person instead of ‘cripple’.) a person who is unable to walk or move normally because of a disease or injury. Sp. mutilado E.g.  (figurative) He's an emotional cripple (= he cannot express his feelings).



8.            film set

Film set: the scenery and props as arranged for shooting a film. Sp. plató




9.            aesthetic
aesthetic: /iːsˈθetɪk/ /esˈθetɪk/ concerned with beauty or the appreciation of beauty. E.g. the pictures give great aesthetic pleasure



10.         fiercely

Fiercely: Extremely. Venetians are fiercely proud of this city.




11.         bang on about

bang on about sth (BrE, informal) to talk a lot about sth in a boring way. Go on. Sp. dar la lata. E.g. He keeps banging on about his new job.




12.         Sighs
Sigh: /saɪ/ a long, deep audible exhalation expressing sadness, relief, tiredness, or similar. E.g. she let out a long sigh of despair.


 
13.         wander

Wander: a short walk in or around a place, usually with no special purpose. E.g. I went to the park and had a wander around.




14.         main drags

The main drag: the most important or the busiest street in a town 




15.         over the odds

Over the odds (BrE, informal) more money than you would normally expect. E.g. Many collectors are willing to pay over the odds for early examples of his work.



Vocabulary:
Afloat: floating on water: Somehow we kept the boat afloat.

Placid: calm and peaceful, with very little movement
 SYN  tranquil:
The placid waters of the lake

League: (Sp. legua) a unit for measuring distance, equal to about 3 miles or 4 000 metres

Drowse: to be in a light sleep or almost asleep.

Landfall:  (literary) the land that you see or arrive at first after a journey by sea or by air:
After three weeks they made landfall on the coast of Ireland

Be at odds (with sth): to be different from sth, when the two things should be the same
 SYN  conflict:
These findings are at odds with what is going on in the rest of the country

Bold: (Sp. bien definido, marcado) that can be easily seen; having a strong clear appearance:
The bold outline of a mountain against the sky

Display: (Sp. Exhibición) an arrangement of things in a public place.

Butch: [bʊtʃ ](of a man) big, and often behaving in an aggressive way

Perverse: /pəˈvɜːs/ Showing deliberate determination to behave in a way that most people think is wrong, unacceptable or unreasonable. Sp. obstinado, retorcido, perverso. E.g.  A perverse decision (= one that most people do not expect and think is wrong). She finds a perverse pleasure in upsetting her parents.

Overwhelming: (Sp. abrumador, sobrecogedor) very great or very strong; so powerful that you cannot resist it or decide how to react.

Ravishing extremely beautiful. SYN  gorgeous. E.g. A ravishing blonde

 Wry: /raɪ/ amusing in a way that shows irony. Sp. irónico. E.g. a wry comedy about family life. A wry comment. Wry humour.

Gloomy: nearly dark, or badly lit in a way that makes you feel sad. Depressing. E.g. a gloomy room/atmosphereIt was a wet and gloomy day.

Cripple: (old-fashioned or offensive. People now use disabled person instead of ‘cripple’.) a person who is unable to walk or move normally because of a disease or injury. Sp. mutilado E.g.  (figurative) He's an emotional cripple (= he cannot express his feelings).

Film set: the scenery and props as arranged for shooting a film. Sp. plató

Fiercely: Extremely. Venetians are fiercely proud of this city.

bang on about sth(BrE, informal) (dar la lata) to talk a lot about sth in a boring way. SYN  go on. E.g. He keeps banging on about his new job.

Drift: to move along smoothly and slowly in water or air:
Clouds drifted across the sky. The empty boat drifted out to sea

Lagoon: Laguna

Peremptory: /pəˈremptəri/ expecting to be obeyed immediately and without question or refusal.

dole sth out (to sb) to give out an amount of food, money, etc. to a number of people in a group. E.g.
the scanty (too little in amount) portions of food doled out to them.

Landmark: (Sp. monumento emblemático) a building or a place that is very important because of its history, and that should be preserved  SYN  monument

Wander: a short walk in or around a place, usually with no special purpose. E.g. I went to the park and had a wander around.

The main drag: the most important or the busiest street in a town.

Get off, get sb off: (Sp. salir)  to leave a place or start a journey; to help sb do this:
We got off straight after breakfast.  He got the children off to school

Over the odds (BrE, informal) more money than you would normally expect. E.g. Many collectors are willing to pay over the odds for early examples of his work.

Glide: To move smoothly and quietly, especially as though it takes no effort. Sp. deslizarse. E.g. Swans went gliding past. The skaters were gliding over the ice.

Steer: (Sp. conducir) to control the direction in which a boat, car, etc. moves. E.g. [vn] He steered the boat into the harbour.

Dashing: (Sp. elegante) (usually of a man) attractive, confident and elegant. E.g. A dashing young officer. His dashing good looks

Long-range: made for a period of time that will last a long way into the future. E.g. a long-range weather forecast. Long-range plans

Opalescent: /ˌəʊpəˈlesnt/ adjective (formal or literary) showing many small points of shifting colour against a pale or dark ground. E.g. an opalescent sky.


Silhouette: /ˌsɪluˈet/ the dark outline or shape of a person or an object that you see against a light background. E.g. A figure stood in the doorway, silhouetted against the light

Ravishingly: in a very beautiful manner. Enchantingly, delightfully. Sp. de un modo deslumbrante. E.g. She is ravishingly beautiful

Stiletto: a woman’s shoe with a very high narrow heel.

Grim: looking or sounding very serious. Sp. .serio, severo. E.g. a grim face/look/smile. She looked grim

Renown /rɪˈnaʊn/ (formal) fame and respect because of sth you have done that people admire. E.g. He won renown as a fair judge. A pianist of some / international / great renown.









 

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