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Dad? Pops? Father? Why Are There So Many Names for the Same Person?

Father_edited

Father’s Day falls on the third Sunday in June, but many of us refer to our male parents as dad or papa rather than by the more formal father. Why does English have so many names for the same person? And where do they all come from?

Like the names for our female parents, papa and its many variations were primarily imitative of the first sounds that young children produce, which include the p, b and d sounds. Throughout the Middle East and South Asia, fathers are called baba. Baba, dada, and papa are examples of what child-language acquisition experts call “reduplicated canonical babbling,” something universally observed as children enter the babbling phase of language accession. Reduplication is when a word, a sound, an element of a word, or a phrase is repeated.

Father was spelled with a d in place of a th until as recently as the late 1500s, though the term itself dates back to the time when Old English was spoken. Dad was first recorded in the 1500s, along with the more colloquial daddyPop is the most recent linguistic twist on affectionate names for our dads, arising in America in the 1830s.

What do you call your dad?

266 Comments

  1. oiuyy -  July 12, 2014 - 7:41 am

    i call mine as abbu

    Reply
  2. Anonymous -  June 16, 2014 - 11:11 am

    I call my dad Appa, but most of the time I call him a random name I think of right on the spot

    Reply
  3. noname -  May 22, 2014 - 1:33 pm

    Since I’m Swedish, I call my dad the absolutely most common Swedish word for it: pappa. However, I’m lazy and often shorten it to papp or appa. I sometimes call him gubbe, which basically means old man.

    Reply
  4. tina -  May 10, 2014 - 5:55 am

    I usually call my parents by their first names. Sometimes I also say mum or dad, but that’s rather unusual.
    When I talk to others about them I either say mother and father or my mother/my father.

    Reply
  5. Alizai -  March 23, 2014 - 1:52 pm

    I call my father “Khan Baba”

    Reply
  6. Cassandra -  January 24, 2014 - 10:16 am

    Poppa mostly or Pop

    Reply
  7. Redbeard -  January 15, 2014 - 12:43 pm

    Old thread, but why not. @Dr S Gupta I call mine by a variant of his first name Scott, Scottie. Scott also happens to be my last name. It’s only because he’s my now step-father(the only father I’ve ever known and care to know). I called him that the five years before he and my mum/mom married(when I was 13). So it became hard to change. I do call him da or dad when telling a friend who he is, or on social media. It’s not that we “western children lack culture,” it’s just that some of us knew our father as a friend, before he became a dad. And then there’s the western children that actually do lack culture, but I think that can be said of children in any country. Believe me, I have nothing but respect for my dad. -22 y/o son from the US.

    Reply
  8. wolf tamer and tree puncher -  December 31, 2013 - 5:28 am

    I call my dad “Dad.” He is awesome!! I love my dad. <3

    Mennonites call their dads "Father." No idea why…maybe a respect thing?

    Reply
  9. eden carter -  October 18, 2013 - 10:34 am

    I love my daddy

    Reply
  10. eden carter -  October 18, 2013 - 10:33 am

    I call my dad…………………super daddy he calls me sweet pea I am 8 years old

    Reply
  11. Vampyr -  August 23, 2013 - 4:09 pm

    ‘Tis Fathers’ Day, the of, or for fathers, not Father’s Day, a day of, or for Father, or a particular father. £ikewise, Mothers’ Day is not Mother’s Day if so, who is THE mother?
    I called to my old man “Daddy,” however, I refer to him as dad, with a small “d;” I sometimes refer to him as “my da,” or “ma faither.”
    I used to call my mother “Mummy;” I sometimes refer to her as “my mum,” my mother, or “ma mother,” however, I call her Mother, Mum, Ma, or Mame (that’s Ma-me, not Mame, the musical, or the act of injuring somebody.); it’s usually “Mother.”

    Reply
  12. nichols-elliott -  August 15, 2013 - 12:11 pm

    Daddy, always Daddy passed away on the morning of August 2, 2013. I was and always will be “Daddy’s Girl”

    “Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.
    From an Irish headstone”

    Reply
  13. Someone -  August 3, 2013 - 12:31 pm

    Baba or Abbu

    Reply
  14. larry jones -  August 2, 2013 - 4:39 pm

    Me too, I call my father the old man. He answers to it, called him that since my junior year of high school.

    Reply
  15. joe mcberry -  August 2, 2013 - 4:37 pm

    i call my father the old man.

    Reply
  16. TT C. -  July 30, 2013 - 10:00 am

    I call him Dad, mostly, but sometimes “Papa” or “Tim-Tam.”

    Reply
  17. Rae -  July 22, 2013 - 4:03 am

    I call him Appa. While conversing in English with him, I call him dad or daddy!

    Reply
  18. shybin -  July 3, 2013 - 6:55 pm

    i call my father as apache………………….its our malayalam language

    Reply
  19. me -  July 3, 2013 - 3:37 pm

    I call him dad or father when I’m joking :))

    Reply
  20. Krishna Reddy Gaddamu -  June 28, 2013 - 1:10 am

    I call him Nannagaru or Nanna. My Son calls me as Daddy

    Reply
  21. Krishna Reddy Gaddamu -  June 28, 2013 - 1:09 am

    My Son calls me as Daddy

    Reply
  22. Krishna -  June 28, 2013 - 1:07 am

    Nannagaru or Nanna

    Reply
  23. Parviz Sani -  June 26, 2013 - 3:51 pm

    I used to call my father,Abaji, My children call me Abu and grand children,DADA

    Reply
  24. harunmollah -  June 25, 2013 - 9:42 pm

    Actually, according to the tradition of my family, I call baba. My father also would call baba. Though I call baba, My sons call me Abbu.

    Reply
  25. Kevin -  June 20, 2013 - 11:40 am

    God, King, Queen, Mr, Mrs, Miss, Father, Lordship, And so on. To me are all formal Titles. Wear as Dad and Mum are not. But that is just what I think. (UK)

    Reply
  26. Dr S Gupta -  June 18, 2013 - 2:08 pm

    i’d say calling your father by his name is one of biggest disrespect I don’t how western children do that they sure lack culture.. and wish you all happy faher’s day which for most of us is everyday..

    Reply
  27. Dr S Gupta -  June 18, 2013 - 2:06 pm

    pitr also evolves\corrupts into “pedre” and we all know what it means..

    Reply
  28. Dr S Gupta -  June 18, 2013 - 1:47 pm

    Just to complete– papa comes from another sanskrit word “papah” the h as in “huh” for the priests in the ancient Hindu city of “vatikavan” now called “vetican” meaning one who takes away “sin”… just for adding, the Guru\Brahman, or pope in Christianity, or any teacher\precher is (like a) (second)father..but the supreme father is Ishwar (GOD).. called parampita.. parampitr parampitar..

    Reply
  29. Dr S Gupta -  June 18, 2013 - 1:40 pm

    Well, father comes from sanskrit “pitr’ and so are– feter, feder, fehder,peter, pita(hindi) derivations — papa, bapu, baba, abbu, baap, (hindi\urdu)..
    In India we call our fathers– all above and pitashri, pitaji.etc but we call ‘papa’.. from the times when Indian emperors ruled over Europe mainly earlier Gupta Kings..

    Reply
  30. Mary Leon -  June 18, 2013 - 3:04 am

    In east china, we called father “BABA”. I love my father! Everyone should love our fathers.

    Reply
  31. No Name -  June 15, 2013 - 12:11 am

    call him..ayah

    Reply
  32. Chris -  June 14, 2013 - 2:48 pm

    We address him as O Benevolent Despot.

    Reply
  33. Teju Alabi -  June 14, 2013 - 11:31 am

    I am a Nigerian of Yoruba ethnic group. I called my father of blessed memory “Baba mi” (pronounced in conversation as “Ba’mi” ) when discussing or speaking formally with him ; But when joking with him or just to tease him, particularly when he was in good mood – in which he was often, I called him Papa xyz.(xyz being the nick name of his last son : Papa Ofio)

    Reply
  34. Jay -  June 14, 2013 - 10:27 am

    call mine daddy without saying the final d’s. Sounds kind of like da-ay but in a non-british way

    Reply
  35. Jay -  June 14, 2013 - 10:27 am

    I call mine daddy without saying the final d’s. Sounds kind of like da-ay but in a non-british way

    Reply
  36. M Raghavan -  June 14, 2013 - 10:05 am

    Although I call him Dad or Daddy, There variations and alternates to the Sansrkit pitr in India for dad:

    1. Appa (Tamil) – One Whom I am close to
    2. Thandai (Tamil) – One Who gave me life
    3. Nana (Telugu) – variation of Anna (Tamil), one whom I feel close to
    4. Baba (Hindi/Urdu) – father
    5. Abbu (Bengali) – variation to the Tamil Appa
    6. Bapu (Gujarati) – Father

    Reply
  37. Alicia -  June 14, 2013 - 9:30 am

    Pops.. dad.. never father. That’s too formal haha!

    Reply
  38. Chinh Do -  June 14, 2013 - 9:08 am

    I’m vietnamese and I call my father “ba”

    Reply
  39. kathy -  June 14, 2013 - 5:31 am

    7 of us kids—we called him ‘daddy’ so much we thought it was his first name!

    Reply
  40. Abby -  June 14, 2013 - 12:47 am

    “baba” means “baby” in Afrikaans lol :D I speak Afrikaans and I used to call my father “Pa”.

    Reply
  41. Mr. K -  June 13, 2013 - 8:47 am

    I called my Dad, Dad. That is until, after 40 years he divorced my Mom, I started calling him “Old Goat”, he never told me to stop. I think he felt guilty, and he did deserve it.

    Reply
  42. rayeanne dalton -  April 4, 2013 - 7:32 am

    i never got a chance to call my mom or dad daddy or mommy so im 13 and when i talk to them i call them that

    Reply
  43. hassan -  February 17, 2013 - 12:21 pm

    in maldives, in our own language “dhivehi” we call “bahpah”

    Reply
  44. Betty -  October 1, 2012 - 12:13 pm

    my oldest started to call him “deddy’ when she began to talk and all 6 of us followed with the same. kids made fun of us because of it.????

    Reply
  45. Stephi -  October 1, 2012 - 3:19 am

    Dada

    Reply
  46. Rekha -  September 27, 2012 - 4:24 am

    paapa…. :)

    Reply
  47. love&hate -  September 19, 2012 - 7:52 am

    i dont no what to say so i go wit pops

    Reply
  48. love&hate -  September 19, 2012 - 7:51 am

    i dont now what to say so i go wit pops

    Reply
  49. Manray130 -  September 17, 2012 - 9:06 am

    UU can you take a guess at what this is…
    H
    H

    *for all u perverts out there, this is a coloness molicuel.
    LOL

    Reply
  50. Gobinath -  September 4, 2012 - 1:25 am

    I call him “APPA”

    Reply
  51. Bakhiet -  September 1, 2012 - 10:43 am

    I am Sudanese. In sudan we say – yaba -or abooy, but baba use is spreading in metroplitan societies becuase of the media effect. In the Middle East “baba” is common in Egypt, but in lebanon I hear “Bay” and in the Gulf , Iraq, and Saudi Arabia I hear “yuba”

    Reply
  52. someone -  August 29, 2012 - 7:03 pm

    i call mine baba. i love him so much!!! he’s so awesome and smart. I wish i was like him.

    Reply
  53. marlin -  August 11, 2012 - 6:17 am

    when I was young, it was “Daddy.” As I transposed to young adult-hood, the name, too, gradually became “Dad” and remained that until his death.

    Reply
  54. Dustin -  August 7, 2012 - 5:09 pm

    Pop

    Reply
  55. yayRayShell -  August 6, 2012 - 11:20 am

    I speak Mandarin so I call him Baba, with the accent on the last “ba.”

    Reply
  56. eyrene10 -  July 27, 2012 - 12:24 pm

    I call my dad the Ukrainian word for dad – “тато”. He is part Ukrainian so he wanted to carry on the tradition.

    Reply
  57. Sarah -  July 22, 2012 - 10:29 pm

    I call him Dad, Daddy, Old Man, and Pops. I choose based on the situation, but I cycle through all of them. Maybe that’s just ’cause I like nicknames, though.

    Reply
  58. 2nd -  July 18, 2012 - 7:05 am

    Daddy ;)

    Reply
  59. phoenix -  July 5, 2012 - 7:19 am

    papa

    Reply
  60. bb -  July 4, 2012 - 10:50 am

    very funny, mike.

    Reply
  61. mady -  June 28, 2012 - 6:27 pm

    I love my daddy!

    Reply
  62. prakash -  June 28, 2012 - 3:58 am

    appa

    in tamil language

    Reply
  63. mmm -  June 27, 2012 - 3:30 pm

    i call him dad, daddy, papa, or babby

    Reply
  64. Patrick Oliver -  June 24, 2012 - 9:59 am

    “I call my dad Pops.”

    Reply
  65. vidya -  June 23, 2012 - 9:19 am

    i call him as “appa” which is the way calling our father in tamil language….

    Reply
  66. Noah -  June 22, 2012 - 11:05 am

    I just call him dad. I only use father when I want some of his twizzlers.

    Reply
  67. Ravi -  June 21, 2012 - 1:50 pm

    Same here dude dad dada =)

    Reply
  68. Mandla Nkosi -  June 20, 2012 - 7:41 am

    dude!

    Reply
  69. Vinny -  June 20, 2012 - 4:26 am

    I call him “Father”.

    Reply
  70. raphael ndung'u -  June 19, 2012 - 12:35 pm

    i always call my father dad because it is the name still there otherwise dad had many names mbugus from kenyan

    Reply
  71. Socrates -  June 18, 2012 - 10:27 pm

    Atta unsar thu in himinam…, the Wulfila “our father prayer”, east gothic around 500AD, is one of the oldest written testaments of the word for “father” in the germanic languages. Turks are using the same word when calling (Kemal) Atatuerk, the “Father of (modern) Turkey”.

    Reply
  72. Steve Miller -  June 18, 2012 - 4:45 pm

    I call my Father Abba

    Reply
  73. Mackenzie -  June 18, 2012 - 3:00 pm

    I call my daddy “DADDY!!!!!”

    LOL

    love peace kenz :)

    Reply
  74. Michael -  June 18, 2012 - 11:58 am

    Vader

    Reply
  75. No Name -  June 18, 2012 - 11:04 am

    i call him “ayah”

    Reply
  76. Doug -  June 18, 2012 - 10:44 am

    As a teenager, I went through a stretch of calling him “my Old Man” like most of my contemporaries. That bit of disrespect was part of being a teenager.

    Reply
  77. Andrew -  June 18, 2012 - 9:30 am

    Ever since my father found the film “O Brother Where Art Thou”, and placed on his favorite movies of all time list, my brothers and I started calling him:

    “The Pater Familius”

    Reply
  78. Amina -  June 18, 2012 - 9:18 am

    yes this is a good subject ,So i call my father ……Papa ,God bless all your papiiiiisssss or daddiiiiiess LOL

    Reply
  79. noel -  June 18, 2012 - 9:17 am

    I call mine “TATAY”.

    Reply
  80. Stoirm -  June 18, 2012 - 9:06 am

    I call mine Boss

    Reply
  81. emily -  June 18, 2012 - 8:38 am

    but never daddy-o

    Reply
  82. emily -  June 18, 2012 - 8:36 am

    i call my dad da

    Reply
  83. lester -  June 18, 2012 - 7:58 am

    He’s my father. I loved it when I was a kid and I said ‘oh, he’s my father’, people were like..”is he your priest?”

    Reply
  84. deysi rogel -  June 18, 2012 - 7:35 am

    en mi país casi siempre papa o papito

    Reply
  85. Bobbi -  June 18, 2012 - 7:29 am

    I call him Daddy!

    Reply
  86. Rosette -  June 18, 2012 - 6:53 am

    I juz call him ‘di’ or daddy. Weird eh?

    Reply
  87. Naysia -  June 18, 2012 - 6:40 am

    I call my father DADDY:)

    Reply
  88. Mandy -  June 18, 2012 - 6:11 am

    I call him Daddy.
    My brother calls him Dad.
    The grandkids call him Da.

    Reply
  89. Keraunos -  June 18, 2012 - 5:55 am

    In Spain (I do not know in other Spanish speaking countries or predominantly catholic countries) Father’s day has always been on 19th march (Saint Joseph day). Why was chosen the third Sunday in June for this purpose?

    Reply
  90. Mary -  June 18, 2012 - 5:50 am

    I call my father dad and my grandfather papa or grandpa.

    Reply
  91. Built11 -  June 18, 2012 - 5:34 am

    Father was always “Dad”, but my grandfather was simply “Bumpa”!

    Reply
  92. Roi Mark Gamba -  June 18, 2012 - 4:06 am

    normal “Papa”

    Reply
  93. Imran Ahmed -  June 18, 2012 - 3:56 am

    Baba

    Reply
  94. Lianne -  June 18, 2012 - 3:54 am

    Just dad or daddy.or when i’m sarcastic FATHER or when im annoyed i just grunt

    Reply
  95. Andy -  June 18, 2012 - 3:48 am

    Papa. Papá, Padre, Papi, Papito, Pai, Pa, Viejo (when adult).

    Reply
  96. A -  June 18, 2012 - 3:38 am

    I’m Bengali, I call him “Baba” or “Abbu”. Interesting how despite the differences in our cultures and languages we call him by similar sounding names.

    Reply
  97. Nitin -  June 18, 2012 - 3:15 am

    Papa.

    Reply
  98. k.g.parthasarathy -  June 18, 2012 - 3:13 am

    My father is no more. He died 50 years ago when I was 25. I (we) called him appa in Tamil my mother tongue.

    Reply
  99. abreham -  June 18, 2012 - 2:43 am

    i am from Ethiopia; here we call our fathers baba (in Tigregan ) & ababa (in Amharic)

    i can speak two native languages

    Reply
  100. OMI -  June 18, 2012 - 2:30 am

    i call him disney channel – Not! but u should watch it

    Reply
  101. Cordella -  June 18, 2012 - 2:15 am

    I call my Father “Daddy”! I love him.

    Reply
  102. krishan -  June 18, 2012 - 1:53 am

    I Called my father “PITAJI” (Its hindi word “Ji” gives a respect)

    Reply
  103. Fin -  June 18, 2012 - 1:19 am

    In Ireland, we tended to use either the long form Daddy (and Mammy), or the short form Da (and Ma). I always called my father Da. But my kids call me Dad or Dada, which is curiously continental.

    Reply
  104. Gayathri -  June 18, 2012 - 12:56 am

    i call my father as “nana” [ in telugu language ]

    Reply
  105. Sharanya -  June 18, 2012 - 12:20 am

    Nena. I come from an indian-telugu family and nena means dad. happy fathers day nena

    Reply
  106. ryan -  June 18, 2012 - 12:18 am

    i call my father ”tatay” in filipino.

    Reply
  107. Hannah -  June 18, 2012 - 12:11 am

    Papa!

    Reply
  108. DEVESH -  June 17, 2012 - 10:43 pm

    I CALL MY FATHER BABA, BUT I CALL MY MOTHER MUMMY. I LOVE YOU BABA & MUMMY.

    Reply
  109. Ranjana -  June 17, 2012 - 10:24 pm

    I call him everything…Dad, Daddy, Papa, Appa, Pa, Pop…und so weiter

    Reply
  110. Ranjana -  June 17, 2012 - 10:23 pm

    I call my him everything…Dad, Daddy, Papa, Appa, Pa, Pop…und so weiter

    Reply
  111. Princess Leia -  June 17, 2012 - 8:38 pm

    Darth Fajaaa.
    From the geeky daughter :)

    Reply
  112. syalala -  June 17, 2012 - 8:34 pm

    I call my dad Babe :D

    Reply
  113. Katie -  June 17, 2012 - 7:47 pm

    I call my mum ‘Ma Mere’ which means “My Mother” in french.:)

    Reply
  114. Katie -  June 17, 2012 - 7:46 pm

    Dad. It’s plain but it’s his name. His actual name is Dion so it’s close.

    Reply
  115. San -  June 17, 2012 - 6:33 pm

    D’y.

    Reply
  116. Melissa -  June 17, 2012 - 6:31 pm

    I don’t call him anything. I don’t talk to him.

    Reply
  117. Gary -  June 17, 2012 - 6:24 pm

    Daddy

    Reply
  118. Victoria -  June 17, 2012 - 5:54 pm

    Daddy. And I believe I always will.

    Reply
  119. Hadassah -  June 17, 2012 - 5:46 pm

    DADDY¡!¡!¡!¡!¡!¡!¡!¡!¡!¡!

    Reply
  120. Hadassah -  June 17, 2012 - 5:45 pm

    Baby-da-da

    Girl-dad

    Teenager -father

    Reply
  121. Ben -  June 17, 2012 - 5:43 pm

    This holiday must be super awkward for the like 25-30% of Americans whose fathers weren’t involved in their childhood.

    Reply
  122. Jannah -  June 17, 2012 - 5:41 pm

    i call him Abu

    Reply
  123. Me -  June 17, 2012 - 5:18 pm

    p is the voiceless counterpart of b I mean.

    Reply
  124. Anisha -  June 17, 2012 - 5:00 pm

    I call my dad “abbu” and so do many other people I know. That’s pretty different from papa and baba.

    Reply
  125. Tim Kramar -  June 17, 2012 - 4:45 pm

    Well, he’s dead now, but he wasn’t around to call him much of anything. I literally forgot what he looked like.

    Reply
  126. Laura Genson -  June 17, 2012 - 4:00 pm

    Daddy when im happy. Dad when im mad

    Reply
  127. Nana Judith -  June 17, 2012 - 3:59 pm

    My children called my husband “Papa”. Now that we have grandchildren, he is called “Gross-papa”, the German for grandfather. (I joke that having grandchildren – soon twelve of them – put the “gross” in “Gross-papa!”)

    Reply
  128. Teresa -  June 17, 2012 - 3:58 pm

    He was Daddy, Dad, or later in his life, I abbreviated, and he was “D.D. Bear” for short.

    Reply
  129. Ray -  June 17, 2012 - 3:53 pm

    P.S. I suppose then the Pope should be called the Bobe or the Dode (Dude)….

    Reply
  130. Ray -  June 17, 2012 - 3:50 pm

    Papa, means sire, because a little puff comes out with the P, cf Apsu sire-Shw, Epimetheus sire-Mathews, Poseidon sire-Sidon…

    Abba, meant father, because it contained (Sumer. or was contented-with) the whole family, N.B. the relation of sire and father, whence Apsu is often mistaken for Absu, but was the same man… so-what: learn as-needed…

    ‘Av’, is the contemporary pronunciation, though because of the modernized dagesh-mark and-or dagesh-rule for pronouncing the same letter,

    ‘Dada’, is also used instead, probably linguistic corruption-avoidance-hiding of the ‘reality’ e.g. in the sense of wearing clothes, or baby-learning…

    Mama, means mother, that which gets as big as needed….
    ___

    Other words similarly:
    sub, means content up to the level,
    sup, means exceeds the level,
    sum, means expands to contain…

    Reply
  131. I love redheads! -  June 17, 2012 - 3:40 pm

    I REFER to him as “Bio” as in biological father – since that’s all he is to me.
    His influence is negative and his teachings are bass-ackwards.
    He can’t do a thing right.

    He was never a FATHER and far from a “DAD”…hence the derogatory term “bio”- but in his presence (which is few and far between) I don’t talk to him and if I do I refer to his as FATHER if he’s in ear shot.

    I can learn more from a WWII vet in a retirement home. Those guys have stories and have lived a life worth hearing about!

    Reply
  132. Debra -  June 17, 2012 - 3:32 pm

    My cousin used to call her father “Doodles.” She had him wrapped around her little finger.

    Reply
  133. krissey -  June 17, 2012 - 2:58 pm

    i would call him father,papa,dad,daddy,dada.pa,pops,papi

    Reply
  134. Miranda -  June 17, 2012 - 2:48 pm

    Im almost 23 yrs old & the majority of my life I’ve said Daddy. And my mom is Momma. I think a lot of it has a lot to do with my southern & small town up bringing. No matter how old I get, that’s what they’ll always be to me :)

    Reply
  135. Peter -  June 17, 2012 - 2:30 pm

    Started calling him ‘Pop’ as a child; I’m 24 now and still call him ‘Pop’

    Reply
  136. angelika -  June 17, 2012 - 1:35 pm

    papi♥

    Reply
  137. Grace -  June 17, 2012 - 1:29 pm

    Typically I call him Daddy, with a short A sound versus the usual long A sound. Think of it as a British person saying “Daddy”. Other than that I call him father, actually. I like it :)

    Reply
  138. Azrael -  June 17, 2012 - 1:06 pm

    I had hoped the “ader” in the scrabble picture was “vader” but then i read “fader” in the article…

    Reply
  139. Melanie -  June 17, 2012 - 1:00 pm

    My father is “Dad” to my siblings and me. My teen children both call their father “Dad” yet I continue to refer to him as “Daddy” when I speak to them. (My mom also calls my dad, “Daddy”.) I guess that is because Daddy is what he was called when he first became a father….

    Reply
  140. Jake -  June 17, 2012 - 12:47 pm

    “In fact papa, baba, and father come from the Sanskrit word pitr”

    No, it doesn’t. They may be linguistic cognates to the word (because they are both from Indo-European languages) but they didn’t “come from” pitr. To say that implies that English descended from Sanskrit instead of Germanic and the West branches of Ind-European. Rather, both papa/baba/pitr all descended from the same Proto-Indo-European root.

    Also, I don’t really think dada and baba are cognates with pitr. Pitr is a cognate with “father” which is also what it means. The Diminutives don’t share the same etymology per se.

    Reply
  141. FATHER | BLOGCHI@mayopia.com -  June 17, 2012 - 12:37 pm

    [...] ‘Father’ the Yellow Brick Road — The Best we remember Daddy. — Almost as old as when he died — Though he never called us ‘Laddie’. — He carried the heaviest load. — Working his life for his family. — Twas the pleasure he had in his life. — It never appeared he’d rather be golfing. — We were the fruit of his loins. — Never was there doubt or question. — Mom would have killed him. –>>L.T.Rhyme [...]

    Reply
  142. Mary -  June 17, 2012 - 12:33 pm

    Father’s Day is a beautiful day and should be concerned a day for those who still have a father to call Dad, Daddy or another name that he is use to be called. Happy Father’s Day to all the Dad’s out there.
    I always called my father Daddy when I was young and older it was
    Dad. Wonderful Dad and what a blessing it was to have been his daughter.

    Reply
  143. Joseph -  June 17, 2012 - 12:10 pm

    Funny thing my daughter and my son call me differently. In Hungarian language “apa” is for father and “anya” for mother. I call my father “Edesapa” (sweetfather) and my mother “Edesanya” (sweetmother) which are pretty long, but carry much respect. “Sweet” is the opposite of “step” (parents).
    On the other hand, my daughter calls me “apuka”, and my son calls me “tatika”, both being diminutives of “apa” and “tata”.

    Reply
  144. mariyahandyasmeen -  June 17, 2012 - 11:46 am

    i call my dad ‘mum’

    Reply
  145. mucho -  June 17, 2012 - 11:32 am

    When I was a young kid I would call my dad “papi.” Now that I’m a grown up, I call him “pa.”

    Reply
  146. S -  June 17, 2012 - 11:24 am

    I call him ‘Papa’ but that’s because I’m Indian not because I’m exquisitely posh. ;)

    Reply
  147. RMT -  June 17, 2012 - 10:43 am

    Baba

    Reply
  148. ? -  June 17, 2012 - 10:26 am

    i call my dad baba or daddy

    Reply
  149. karuna -  June 17, 2012 - 10:08 am

    i call my father nana(in telugu)

    Reply
  150. Mike Oxlong -  June 17, 2012 - 9:35 am

    I call my father master, he only comes up to the attic every 3 days to give me another loaf of bread so i rarely get to see him,

    Reply
  151. Katie -  June 17, 2012 - 9:31 am

    I call him D-A-Double D-Y

    Reply
  152. tohru -  June 17, 2012 - 9:24 am

    papa ! ^.^♥

    Reply
  153. Melanie -  June 17, 2012 - 9:23 am

    I call him Daddy and just annoy him and annoy him till I get what I want.

    Reply
  154. Ole TBoy -  June 17, 2012 - 9:17 am

    I called my grandfather “Grandfather,” my father “Pop.” My children call me “Dad.” My grandchildren from my daughter call me “Grandpop” while my granddaughter from my son calls me “PopPop.”

    Reply
  155. Thomas -  June 17, 2012 - 9:11 am

    I call him Mr.D

    Reply
  156. Kyrian -  June 17, 2012 - 9:10 am

    Well…..i call my dad “FATHER” & he’s cool wit dat. While in my dialect i & my siblings call him “DEDE” which waz a borrowed tongue 4rm our nanny when we were kids.

    Reply
  157. David -  June 17, 2012 - 8:38 am

    What about, “my old man?” haha

    Also, no one has brought up the Semitic (and Arabic) “Abba,” such as in the Bible, an informal Aramaic name of father. I sometimes call God Himself my “Abba” Father!

    Reply
  158. Dawn -  June 17, 2012 - 8:24 am

    When I spoke “to” him, it was Dad or Daddy. When I speak”of” him, I always give him the respectful and regal title of “my father”. I cringe when I hear people say, “my dad” instead of “my father”, how long ago did everyone change?

    Reply
  159. sarah -  June 17, 2012 - 8:19 am

    baba or daddy

    Reply
  160. Joe -  June 17, 2012 - 8:13 am

    I call my father Ralph. He calls me Tommy. My name is Joe.

    Reply
  161. Behnam -  June 17, 2012 - 8:11 am

    baba :-)

    Reply
  162. Samia -  June 17, 2012 - 7:28 am

    Daddy my daddy

    Reply
  163. Samia -  June 17, 2012 - 7:27 am

    I call him Daddy,My Daddy,my Hero!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  164. Dhanyashri barkur -  June 17, 2012 - 7:24 am

    i call hiM “papa” OR SOMETIME”appa”!1
    n i love him a lot….hess my spider mannn!!!

    Reply
  165. anonymous -  June 17, 2012 - 5:44 am

    @Have Suzumiya Haruhi, will travel 005 « Mirror Universe: your comment makes no sense whatsoever. -.-

    Reply
  166. princess-junaidi -  June 17, 2012 - 5:43 am

    I use to call him “baba”….. as I’m a pakistani, I speak urdu…
    here in our country… father can be called as: papa, baba, pappa and seldom dad or daddy as well.. :)

    Reply
  167. Dynamo -  June 17, 2012 - 4:16 am

    I call him the normal ‘Dad’.

    Reply
  168. Asmaa -  June 17, 2012 - 4:12 am

    I call my father as Baba!! :)

    Reply
  169. cid -  June 17, 2012 - 3:48 am

    I call mine Ama but when I’m broke, I call him collect.

    Reply
  170. Todd -  June 17, 2012 - 3:06 am

    Bill, Herbet or bro. Just too mix it up.

    Reply
  171. Victoria -  June 17, 2012 - 2:56 am

    I’m daddy’s little girl.. so i call my father daddy or in my language, i call him padar- jan. I LOVE MY DADDY!!! :)

    Reply
  172. Steph -  June 17, 2012 - 2:54 am

    weird – american fathers day is obviously soon, but australian fathers day is the firt sunday of september :P

    Reply
  173. Steph -  June 17, 2012 - 2:44 am

    I call my dad “baba” – the Arabic word for dad. My equivalent of the english “daddy” is “babee” which i use generally when i’m too lazy to say baba. For some reason its easier to say!

    Reply
  174. San -  June 17, 2012 - 2:32 am

    Papu

    Reply
  175. rachd -  June 17, 2012 - 2:25 am

    mau…in b’laan dialect…

    Reply
  176. Superstar -  June 17, 2012 - 2:12 am

    I sometimes call my father dad but I usually call my father dad in Vietnamese.
    Dictionary.com you are very helpful and I can understand more.
    :)

    Reply
  177. Superstar -  June 17, 2012 - 2:11 am

    I sometimes call my father dad but I usually call my father dad in Vietnamese.
    Dictionary.com you are very helpful and I can understand more.

    Reply
  178. Ali Ebrahimi -  June 17, 2012 - 1:41 am

    I thinck baba and subsicuently papa are of hebrew and arabic origin. Aren’t they?

    Reply
  179. TTQ -  June 17, 2012 - 12:30 am

    Oi!

    Reply
  180. VJ -  June 17, 2012 - 12:16 am

    I’m chinese, so I call my dad “baba”. :)
    Happy Father Day!

    Reply
  181. Sarah -  June 16, 2012 - 11:42 pm

    We had always called our father daddy. We have a half-sister who called him Pop. As we got older we started to call him Pop because daddy started to sound like we were 4. However, I would still call him daddy when I wanted something. Daaaaaaddy. I miss him so much!

    Reply
  182. Vanessa C -  June 16, 2012 - 10:12 pm

    Daddy, the man who kissed me on my forehead before exiting for one of his eight hour jobs. Always and forever my daddy! I miss you and LOVE <3 LOVE you til my dying day.

    Reply
  183. daddy's girl -  June 16, 2012 - 10:03 pm

    APPA! In south asia people also call fathers Abba (common among the Muslim community) and Appa (common in the tamil language).

    Reply
  184. Kate -  June 16, 2012 - 9:31 pm

    I call my father “Dad”, unless he locks me in my room until I say, “Father whom I love so dearly, because you are the most wonderful father on the planet, would you do me the favor that I will be ever in your debt for and let me out of my bedroom?”

    Then I found the door that goes outside from my room.

    Reply
  185. shreen -  June 16, 2012 - 8:55 pm

    in kurdish ” bab” “babo”……….. -_-…………’_'…………

    Reply
  186. Puteri -  June 16, 2012 - 8:50 pm

    In Malaysia, mostly people call their father “papa”, “ayah”, “baba”, “bapak”, “abah”, or “daddy”.. And I call my father “abah”.

    Reply
  187. Marcus -  June 16, 2012 - 8:37 pm

    Papa and baba mostly

    Reply
  188. Elaine -  June 16, 2012 - 8:21 pm

    Dad, Daddy, and my personal favorite, Daddus

    Reply
  189. Elmagrabi -  June 16, 2012 - 8:20 pm

    قاموس اللغة الانجليزية

    Reply
  190. WIZZFIZZ -  June 16, 2012 - 8:01 pm

    my dad rulz§

    Reply
  191. WIZZFIZZ -  June 16, 2012 - 8:00 pm

    I call him DAD!!♥♥♥
    when i feel sad i call him daddy.☻☺

    Reply
  192. Jeff -  June 16, 2012 - 7:31 pm

    I call my father Dad, yet sometimes on cards or presents I’ll write out his firt name. My grandfather was always Grampy or Super Gramp to us. and my great-grandfather was always Pop.

    Reply
  193. andie -  June 16, 2012 - 7:25 pm

    Usually, it’s just “dad” or “daddy.” But when I’m trying to get his attention and he can’t hear me, I say “FATHER!!” really loudly.

    Reply
  194. Darth Vader -  June 16, 2012 - 7:20 pm

    lol.. My name is there too :)

    Reply
  195. Jaffer -  June 16, 2012 - 7:00 pm

    List:

    Dad
    Daddy
    Papa
    Father
    Baba ( I call my dad this)
    Pops
    Daddy-o
    The Dad mister
    dadsies
    the pro
    papy

    Reply
  196. artee11 -  June 16, 2012 - 6:41 pm

    I call him -dad, daddy, father, padre, and papito heheh

    Reply
  197. jeremy -  June 16, 2012 - 6:40 pm

    i call him dad

    Reply
  198. Jackie -  June 16, 2012 - 5:41 pm

    I call him tatay that was the lovely word to call father n philippines

    Reply
  199. monica carrig -  June 16, 2012 - 5:39 pm

    Of course daddy because I love him more than any thing.

    Reply
  200. Susan -  June 16, 2012 - 5:04 pm

    When my father was living here on earth, I called him, “Daddy,” when a little girl. As I grew older, I called him, “Dad.” I still call him, “Dad,” in prayer.
    I (and my sister and brother) called our grandfathers, “Grampy,” even when we grew older. They are all in Heaven now. Happy Fathers’ Day to all the fathers out there. Happy Fathers’ Day to all our beautiful priests.

    Reply
  201. Touria -  June 16, 2012 - 4:20 pm

    In Arabic a father can be called: Abee, Baba, Abati, Bayi, abouya, Bba,Babati, Waalidi.

    Reply
  202. TETO -  June 16, 2012 - 3:51 pm

    My son got his first haircut in 10th grade, filled out a form stating who was responsible for the bill, he worte…. PAP. All the school kids then called him that. It eventually morphed into PAPSTER or THE OLD PAPSTER. They all loved him exceedingly and still speak of him with reverance.

    Reply
  203. ME -  June 16, 2012 - 3:33 pm

    I call him Daddy, what else? n_n

    Reply
  204. Brannon -  June 16, 2012 - 3:31 pm

    Dad

    Reply
  205. Matthew -  June 16, 2012 - 3:23 pm

    I usually use “Dad” but I will occasionally use “Father” to sound formal.

    Reply
  206. SoCo -  June 16, 2012 - 3:16 pm

    Father

    Reply
  207. Cyraus -  June 16, 2012 - 3:02 pm

    I use the formal “Father” to address my male parent because it’s uncommon.

    Reply
  208. Raxacoricofallapatorius -  June 16, 2012 - 2:53 pm

    I call him Father of Mine.

    Reply
  209. sonia -  June 16, 2012 - 2:44 pm

    I call him by his first name.

    Reply
  210. Lily -  June 16, 2012 - 2:10 pm

    Daddy. Always! ;)

    Reply
  211. coastermill -  June 16, 2012 - 2:04 pm

    why is “VADER” crossing “DADDY” vertically? an all inclusive father’s day perhaps?

    Reply
  212. Farooq M. Hashmi -  June 16, 2012 - 1:40 pm

    I used to call my deceased father, ‘ Abba ji ‘.

    Reply
  213. Paul -  June 16, 2012 - 1:27 pm

    Baba in Shona a Zimbabwean language

    Reply
  214. Vanessa -  June 16, 2012 - 1:06 pm

    Dad. Or Father if I’m just messing around.

    Reply
  215. Jason -  June 16, 2012 - 1:03 pm

    Daddy or dad:)

    Reply
  216. mary torres -  June 16, 2012 - 12:51 pm

    i call ma dad pappi

    Reply
  217. Vaughn -  June 16, 2012 - 12:43 pm

    i call my dad “dad” but i call my grandfather pepa (pee-pah)

    Reply
  218. maria -  June 16, 2012 - 12:16 pm

    My father is no longer with me, but i used to call him ‘papá’ when I was a little girl and later on, ‘pai’.
    Here in Portugal father’s day is on march 19th, I think because this is St Joseph’s day.

    Reply
  219. cf -  June 16, 2012 - 12:14 pm

    I called him papa when I was little, but now it’s dad

    Reply
  220. L.S.CHOPRA -  June 16, 2012 - 11:04 am

    PITA JI

    Reply
  221. Angelina -  June 16, 2012 - 10:52 am

    I call my daddy daddy :P

    Reply
  222. Angelina -  June 16, 2012 - 10:51 am

    :) Daddy

    Reply
  223. LadyGuapo -  June 16, 2012 - 10:30 am

    I call my father-in-law “Pop”, and my bio-Dad and I never had relationship before he past. Our children call my husband “Dad”, “Daddy”, and to be funny “Pappi”. Happy Father’s Day to those men around the world that may or may not be bio-Dads, but are more Daddys than Fathers! Much <3

    Reply
  224. toot -  June 16, 2012 - 9:45 am

    dead

    Reply
  225. Mehran -  June 16, 2012 - 9:40 am

    Of Course I Call My Hero “Baba”

    Reply
  226. Michael -  June 16, 2012 - 9:23 am

    Daddy-O of course ! !

    Reply
  227. Soz -  June 16, 2012 - 9:17 am

    Hey!

    Reply
  228. Kate -  June 16, 2012 - 9:02 am

    wowee. i never knew that

    Reply
  229. Elias -  June 16, 2012 - 8:01 am

    Hey, tomorrow’s my first father’s day with my daughter n_n

    Reply
  230. Sophie Liu -  June 16, 2012 - 7:41 am

    His so nice to me.

    Reply
  231. Sophie Liu -  June 16, 2012 - 7:41 am

    I call my father daddy.

    Reply
  232. Ebony -  June 16, 2012 - 7:07 am

    i usually call him father or daddy

    Reply
  233. camille t. -  June 16, 2012 - 6:50 am

    Interesting. I call my father Daddy, even as an adult. So does my sister. My brothers used to as well, but decided as teens it was no longer cool to use that term. They shortened it to Da.

    Reply
  234. Duncan -  June 16, 2012 - 6:27 am

    My dad is always just “Dad” or “Daddy”. Sometimes when I’m buttering him up or being sarcastic I’ll call him something like “dearest Father darling”. ;) On the other hand, my grandfather has always just been called “Papa” by us grandkids. Sometimes we call him “Grandpa” but mostly it’s Papa.

    Reply
  235. micannfer -  June 16, 2012 - 6:06 am

    I call my father Phil

    Reply
  236. Anthony Kpodo -  June 16, 2012 - 5:40 am

    Very educative. I’ve learnt a lot from it. Could it also be that the word, “Papa” came from the Latin language because the Roman Catholics call the Head of their Church Pope Or Papa. In the Ewe language of Ghana for example, he is called, “Roma fe Episkopo, Papa,” that is, “Papa, the Bishop of Rome.”

    Reply
  237. Daniel joung -  June 16, 2012 - 5:33 am

    Dictionary.com was, is and will be the most helpful web sight in my life

    Reply
  238. sheraton -  June 16, 2012 - 5:23 am

    ““papa” and its many variations were primarily imitative of the first sounds that young children make – the p, b and ah sound [...] In fact papa, baba, and father come from the Sanskrit word pitr.”
    Hence the first sounds of Sanskrit babies were “p”, “ih”, and “tr” ?! Probably, that has changed due to an evolutionary adaptation of the human tongue to processed foods…

    Reply
  239. Michael Kenny Atanda -  June 16, 2012 - 3:45 am

    I’m a Yoruba from Lagos-Nigeria, and I speak Yoruba Language; its a very beautiful language with musical notes as ‘do’, ‘re’, ‘mi’. Father or Papa or Dad in my language is called ‘Baba’ or ‘Baami’ and in my local dialect is called ‘Bami’.

    Reply
  240. polyglot -  June 16, 2012 - 2:53 am

    pater, pidar (farsi), pitr(sanskri), vater (german)

    Reply
  241. Sam -  June 16, 2012 - 1:01 am

    I call him “baba” “babayi” ( in informal cases) & “daddy” when I’m speaking English with him :)

    The similarities between languages is so interesting! Sometimes it seems we came from the same families.

    Reply
  242. J. Li -  June 16, 2012 - 12:36 am

    First comment! I call him baba.

    Reply
  243. Yankiemog -  June 15, 2012 - 11:56 pm

    Having reached the age when I am no longer young enough to know everything I have all the epithets mentioned above and more. As a grandad and greatgrand I have a further set of descriptions from the little kids too many to recount. Old people don’t care what you call them. What ever age you are they have already been there and done it, the youngsters don’t even know the way.

    Reply
  244. abrianna -  June 15, 2012 - 11:52 pm

    I love my ‘Pa’

    Reply
  245. LOL -  June 15, 2012 - 11:37 pm

    Tongue Twister: Dad danced doing the dad dong ding dun do da de di dor . Weird, eh? I made it up. LOL!

    Reply
  246. Autumn -  June 15, 2012 - 11:26 pm

    Daddy :)

    Reply
  247. Heather -  June 15, 2012 - 10:44 pm

    I call my father “dad” :) or sometimes “daddy” if I want something…
    Funnily enough, in Croatian, “baba,” means grandmother – it does not refer to anything paternal!

    Reply
  248. [...] Dictionary.com is a leading provider of online language reference products and services. Dad? Pops? Father? Why do many names for the same person? | The Hot Word “Sunday is called Father’s Day, but many of us refer to our male parents as [...]

    Reply
  249. leda -  June 15, 2012 - 10:22 pm

    Always “PAPI” until his last days… forever “MY HERO” and someone that made me curious about life,eager to learn more and more,to discover through reading about everything …the world! and that I was “worth it”!!!

    Reply
  250. XxJamberxX -  June 15, 2012 - 10:15 pm

    I call my father “Dad”, anything else just seems too formal.

    Reply
  251. Sarah -  June 15, 2012 - 9:00 pm

    I call him as dad.

    Reply
  252. Ashley -  June 15, 2012 - 8:34 pm

    Daddy.

    Reply

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