3.19.2009

The Language of Mother

At 4 months, Kai started to call me “Uma”, his version of the word. This sparked my interest in the linguistic origins of the word “mother”.

It derives from the root “mater” which means measure. Other words with this common root are: matriarchy, maternal, and matron. Did you know that the word mama means “breast” in Latin? Go figure.

Check out the word “mother” in other languages:

- Mata (Hindi)

- Ma (Mandarin)

- Madre (Spanish, Italian)

- Imi (Hebrew)

- Okasan (Japanese)

- Makuahine (Hawaiian)

- Me (Vietnamese)

- Mamma (Swedish)

- Ina (Tagalog)

No matter what, the word “mother” in any language is powerful. Ask any child, I’m sure the word conjures up comfort, nourishment, and authority.

How do you say it in your household?


Originally published on Tea Collection

1 comment:

pomegranate seed said...

good luck ly :) we will be doing the exact same:a 13 hour flight (preceeded by a 6 hour drive) from Auckland to SF when Aurora is 10 months...and i'm already a bit nervous. i hear you should book the first row of a flight (not 1st class) where there is extra leg room so you can fit a bassinette (apparently you can get them on the flight?) we're probably going to buy a "kinderkot" http://www.kinderkot.com.au/ for the traveling/hotels, etc. have you seen those? they're supposedly good sized up to toddler...