Word and Phrase Origins

Where did the word mom come from?

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March 15, 2011 8:19PM

mom - from mamma


1570s, reduplication of ma-, nearly universal among the I.E. languages. Probably a natural sound in baby-talk, perhaps imitative of sound made while sucking. In educated usage, the stress is always on the last syllable. In terms of recorded usage in English, mum is from 1823, mummy 1839, momma 1884, mom 1894, and mommy 1902.