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Where does the word family come from?
The word family first referred to the servants of a household and then to both the servants and the descendants of a common ancestor. It comes from the Latin word familia, meaning 'household; household servants', which came from another Latin term famulus, or 'servant'. It was not until 1667 that the term was used specifically for the group of persons consisting of parents and their children. The word daughter is a very old English word, first recorded c. 1000 as dohtor. It descends from Old English and is related to words in many other Indo-European languages, such as Greek thugater. The modern spelling daughter was first used in a 16th century Bible and was popularized by Shakespeare. The word son is quite a bit older, found in Beowulf in 645. It also descends from Old English and is related to words in many other Indo-European languages, such as Greek huios. Mother is one of the surviving words from Anglo-Saxon (starting as modor), which are among the most fundamental words in English. Mother has many cognates in other languages, including Old High German muoter, Dutch moeder, Old Norse mothir, Latin mater, Greek meter, and Sanskrit mat. These words share an Indo-European root. Mother is one of the Anglo-Saxon nouns that has an Anglo-Saxon adjective as well as a Latinate adjective - motherly and maternal - and motherly also came from Old English (modorlic). Mom, a shortened form of momma, was recorded in 1894; momma was first used in 1884. Both are chiefly North American uses. Mamma and mama, created by children reduplicating an instinctive sound, are much earlier terms, showing up in the 1500s. In between came mommy (also North American in usage) in 1848, which was a variant of mammy (also 1500s). Father is derived from Latin pater and has cognates in many other languages; the word entered Old English as feder and foeder (among others).