Saturday, July 13, 2013


Täti means an aunt, but it is also used for referring to any woman who is too old to be called tyttö, a girl. Children use it a lot, but unfortunately so do also adults when talking to kids.

  • Katso, tuolla tädillä on leipää ankoille. - Look, that lady has bread for the ducks. 
  • Täti antaa sinullekin leipää. - The lady gives some bread for you, too. 
  • Sano tädille kiitos. - Say thanks to the lady. 

The problem is that there isn't really a good alternative for täti, as rouva, madam, sounds old, I cannot really expect anyone to refer to a 35-year-old as tyttö, and henkilö, a person is too official. Sure, I'm ihminen, a human being and nainen, a woman, but those sound kind of distant, too. Especially in a friendly duck-feeding context.

Have you experienced any tädittely in Finland? (For men, it's setä and sedittely.)


Tommy Quist said...

I got used to täti and setä more quickly than I'm getting used to the pink hue that this site now has.

Hanna said...

Oh come on! Which colour would you prefer? :)

Tommy Quist said...

It doesn't really matter which color it is :) but I do have to get used to it, and since you don't have an article out every day, I don't get used to it very quickly.