Have you ever dreamt of winning the lottery? I certainly have! That’s why I was so interested in this article on the BBC News website yesterday. There’s a great word in the title:

Huge Italy jackpot still not won

A ‘jackpot‘ is the biggest prize offered in a competition or lottery. We often use it in the phrase ‘to hit the jackpot‘ meaning to win a jackpot or to suddenly become very successful.

The next interesting expression comes a little later on, where it is mentioned that:

Ficarra Mayor Basilio Ridolfo and his colleagues stumped up 115 euros from their pay packet to buy tickets.

The phrasal verb ‘stump up‘ means to pay a sum of money and a ‘pay packet‘ is the amount of money a person earns at work. People in the U.S. prefer to say ‘paycheck‘ rather than ‘pay packet‘.

There is another interesting word in the next paragraph:

Before the draw, Mr Ridolfo told Ansa news agency that they chose numbers which were connected with the town’s patron saint, the Virgin Mary of the Assumption.

A ‘draw‘ (sometimes ‘prize draw‘) is when the winning tickets are selected in a raffle or lottery.

The final pieces of vocabulary I would like to look at are in the following paragraph:

If Ficarra had struck it lucky, Mr Ridolfo said half of the winnings would be spent on municipal projects while the rest would be divided between the town’s 2,000 residents.

To ‘strike it lucky‘ is to have sudden good luck and ‘municipal projects‘ are projects related to that particular town or city.

What would you do if you ‘struck it lucky‘ and ‘hit the jackpot‘ in your national lottery?