169 Dad & Mom

Stephen Turban, Harvard University student, talks with ShaoLan about the many different words for parents. In Chinese, you need to know the formal way to talk about your parents, the way to address them respectfully, the way to address them informally, as well as the way to address other people’s parents, or indeed, the way to talk about your parents to other people in a humble manner.

The informal Chinese word for Dad is 爸爸, and for Mum is 媽媽/妈妈, while the slightly more formal (but also polite) way of describing them is as 父親/父亲 “father ” and 母親/母亲 “mother. ”

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Dad & Mom
爸 & 媽 / 爸 & 妈
bà & mā
爸媽 / 爸妈
bà mā
Parents, formal way to address the parents
fù mǔ
Parents, formal way to address the parents
父母親 / 父母亲
fù mǔ qīn
父親 / 父亲
fù qīn
母親 / 母亲
mǔ qīn
To refer to someone’s dad
lìng zūn
To refer to someone’s mom
lìng táng
My father
jiā fù
My mother
jiā mǔ

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