I've read letterataggine in a sentence by Guglielmo Giannini (from Le Vespe), but this is the only reference in which I can find this word used (also without any explanation).

Can someone tell me more about this? (I think that it is an error by Giannini).

EDIT: On suggestion here is the quote in which I found letterataggine. Giannini was talking about the editor Longanesi, whom he despised, defining him:

«l'editore più maleducato d'Italia. Varrebbe forse la pena di dire qualcosa di più sul conto di questo altero bassotto così pieno di letterataggine: ma forse è meglio fregarsene di lui altamente; e altamente appunto perché si tratta d'un bassotto»

  • 3
    When you ask a question about the use of a word in a specific text, remember to always report the full sentence in which it appears, possibly with some context. Commented Nov 3, 2016 at 8:25
  • Seconding Federico: can you give a complete quote, both of the sentence where you found the word and of its source?
    – DaG
    Commented Nov 3, 2016 at 8:44

2 Answers 2


It's not a correct Italian word in the sense that it is not in the dictionaries. But "being in dictionaries" is only partially related to the ability of a word to convey meaning (and so be a functional part of the language).

This word is built using standard rules of the Italian language (in this case applying the suffix -aggine to the adjective letterato), so it is fairly clear its meaning: "the fact of being lettered" or "a thing done by someone lettered" ("lettered" in the sense of being well-read, well educated or otherwise scholarly).

I will add that the excessive length of the word and the general connotation of the suffix -aggine makes me suspect that this word has been used in a humorous fashion, something like "The kind of crazy thing that only extremely well educated people write/do". I doubt that Giannini is making a mistake here, but rather that he decided to create a new word (using the established rules of the language) to better make his point. Context is key to understand neologisms.


I don't think this is an actual word, it looks like Giannini wanted to give the word "letteratura" the same meaning of "something stupid or bad" , like in the sentence "è una stupidaggine" (it's a stupid thing). "Letterataggine" so looks like he is giving a bad connotation about literature.

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