#EngVocab: Terms of endearment

Seems like only yesterday we celebrated New Year… And now, we’re in February. Some of you might have been looking forward to this month because of the Valentine’s Day.

So, let’s start off this month by talking about something related to the 14th and, of course, love. We are discussing terms of endearment.

Terms of endearment are used to address somebody who is special or whom we’re fond of. Instead of using the said person’s first name, terms of endearment are used to show extra affection so the person realizes how special he/she is for us. Do you often use terms of endearment? Or perhaps you have a pet name for your loved ones?

We have been familiar with baby, babe, my love, darling, sweetie, sweetheart, honey, my dear, my lady, baby boy, and baby girl.

Today we are going to discuss other terms of endearment.

  1. Cutie pie is used to address someone charming, cute, or adorable.
  2. My boo means my girlfriend or my boyfriend, and has similar ringing to my baby.
    Remember this legendary duet? In 2004, Usher and Alicia Keys teamed up in a song titled ‘My Boo’.
  3. Wifey, hubby, bestie, boyfie, but not girlfie, are cuter versions of wife, husband, best friend, and boyfriend.
    • “These days we have ‘shawty’ and ‘shnookums’. Time sure has changed. Lol. There are probably more but I can’t think of them.” – Orbanrone Amal @orbanrone
  4. Pumpkin and cupcake are used to address somebody who is small and cute.
  5. Sugar or sugarplum is used for somebody who is sweet.
  6. My pet has similar meaning to my love or my dear. So, the meaning of the word ‘pet’ is not limited to animals we look after.
    • For example you can see the way Sweeney Todd talk to Mrs Lovett, “Have charity towards the world, my pet.”



Compiled and written by @alicesaraswati for @EnglishTips4U on Monday, February 1, 2016


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