25 - Capera

Episode XXVI


(ca – PAY – ra)

The capera, literally, is a woman who clips hair: the etymology refers to the term “capa”, meaning “head”, so a capera is a woman who “takes care of heads”. The word is almost never used with this meaning, though, but rather to indicate a gossipy and meddling person who blabs a lot, possibly badmouthing those she speaks of.

A traditional trade of the folk, the capera is a woman who privately clips hair: she goes to the houses of those who need her services bringing her tools with her, and clips the hair of her clients (usually only women). The fact that she has access to many houses in the neighbourhood means that she hears a lot of gossip and knows a great deal of intimate stuff about people in the area: during the clipping she would chat with her client and gossip would go around from house to house.

The connotation of the capera, in its general meaning of blabbermouth, is negative: all the gossiping and meddling she does is not very nice, but the morbosity of people often means that, even if generally not loved, she’s respected nonetheless as a source of reliable information on anybody.




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