What’s up with Dad?

dad, pa, papa, pop

My father was always Pop. He was born in 1908. His father, also Pop, was born in 1863. That guy’s father was born in 1809, and I don’t know what his kids called him. I’m guessing, from the chart above, it was Pa. My New Jersey cousins called their father Pop. Uncles and their male contemporaries of the same generation in North Carolina, however, were Dad or Daddy.

To my kids, I’m Pop or Papa. Family thing, again.

Anyway, I’m wondering what’s up, or why’s up, with Dad?



  1. Jan searls’s avatar

    TV. I bet that after Life with Father and I Remember Mama, they started calling the fathers in the shows DAD in the 1960s. It would have been a very quick way to update a script, as it must have sounded more casual and hip.

  2. Jan searls’s avatar

    By 1980, the new parents were using what they’d been raised hearing. And “Who’s your Daddy?” Was THE phrase.

  3. Tanya W.’s avatar

    I’m from the northeast and grew up in the 70s/early 80s and my father was always Dad, FWIW. No idea why it’s becoming so much more prevalent!

  4. Russ Nelson’s avatar

    I’m just a decade younger than you, but: http://russnelson.com/dad/

  5. Nom’s avatar

    Dad comes from old irish daidí. Or as you see from the graph dad peaked in tandem with the gretest art movement of the 20th century -dada. around 1920s.

  6. bedava kod’s avatar

    thanx you admin. Nice posts. veryyyy

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