Polaron - Get Polish Citizenship / EU Passport now!Witamy, Guest  |  Members

The Ultimate Guide to POLAND
Unanswered  |  Archives

Poland News and Events
Home / Culture /answers: 324 - page 1 of 11

Babcia or Busha - any social class difference?

HulaGRL Threads: 1
Joined: Nov 11, 2007
  ♀   Nov 11, 2007, 02:23pm  #1

I know they both mean Grandmother....but does the difference have to do with social class or geography?


Grzegorz_ Threads: 79
Posts: 6,940
Joined: Nov 16, 2006
  ♂   Nov 11, 2007, 02:26pm  #2

Babcia is a correct one.

inkrakow     Nov 11, 2007, 03:08pm  #3

I've never heard of Busha! Sounds like a shortening of Babusia, which comes from Babcia.

slick77 Threads: -
Posts: 180
Joined: Nov 9, 2007
  ♂   Nov 11, 2007, 03:11pm  #4

What does Bush have to do with babcia? lol

Softsong Threads: 6
Posts: 547
Joined: Sep 2, 2007
  ♀   Edited by: Softsong  Nov 14, 2007, 01:36am  #5

In the USA older Polish ladies are famous for wearing a scarf on their heads, called a babuska. Maybe there is a connection?
:-)

Heritage Threads: -
Posts: 2
Joined: Nov 24, 2007
  ♀   Nov 24, 2007, 08:32pm  #6

Babcia is Fathers mother and Busha is mothers mother.

polishgirltx     Nov 24, 2007, 08:34pm  #7

Quoting: Heritage
Babcia is Fathers mother and Busha is mothers mother.

??

babcia is dad's mom, and babcia is mom's mom...
the same...

omniba     Nov 25, 2007, 03:58pm  #8

Only Babcia/Babka means Granny and only Babcia/Babka is in Polish. Busha in Polish would be pronounced Bus-ha and apart from not sounding even vaguely Polish it is very likely just some sort of family nickname to differentiate between the two – ie Mother’s Mother and Father’s Mother. The language is complicated enough without adding any more embellishments.
The only Busha I’ve ever heard of is a diminutive of Bogusia, and even that would be spelt Busia.

JustysiaS Threads: 15
Posts: 2,742
Joined: Oct 14, 2007
  ♀   Nov 25, 2007, 04:02pm  #9

yeah i didnt think there was a different way to call your dads mum and your mums mum. its still babka/babcia/babunia

PinKoalabear Threads: -
Posts: 3
Joined: Nov 26, 2007
  ♀   Nov 26, 2007, 09:01am  #10

Babcia is the one most commonly used.
I have never heard of Busha??
I call both grandmothers Babcia.:/

I agree, perhaps Busha is derived from Babusia?

Dixie     Nov 28, 2007, 06:20am  #11

Here in Pennsylvania we Polish call our Grandmothers Babci.

Cantankerous     Nov 30, 2007, 08:24am  #12

My Great Grand mother is from Poland and we always called her and my Grandmother Busia, so i wonder where this came from??

How do you pronounce " Babcia" just how it's spelt?

z_darius Threads: 16
Posts: 4,702
Joined: Oct 18, 2007
  ♂   Nov 30, 2007, 08:31am  #13

"Busia" (never heard it while I still lived in Poland) seems to be a short form of "babusia", which is yet another diminutive form of babka.

Quoting: Cantankerous
How do you pronounce " Babcia" just how it's spelt?

Your spellling is correct.
You can pronounce it as "Bob-cha".

Softsong Threads: 6
Posts: 547
Joined: Sep 2, 2007
  ♀   Nov 30, 2007, 01:04pm  #14

Yes, I believe it is a common American thing to call a Polish grandmother Babci.

Probably because after time, the descendents take the basic root word and add the kind of ending that makes sense to American ears. The way we make English words informal and cute. Like Bobby instead of Bob. Puppy instead of dog.

But what is forgotten is that kind of ending does not do the same thing in Polish. Michal is Michalek. Kot is kotek.

So it is an adaptation and corruption. But that is what I called mine, too. I never knew it would sound strange to someone from Poland. And then I found out when my Polish bf laughed at me calling myself Babci.

AJK Threads: 1
Posts: 3
Joined: Feb 12, 2008
  ♀   Feb 12, 2008, 05:41pm  #15

My maternal greatgrandmother was called Busha. She was from Szubin Poland and later lived in South Bend IN.

joe s     Feb 17, 2008, 01:48pm  #16

Our Grandma was called Busia (Busha).
When we speak to recent immigrants, they say we might use this diminutive or pronunciation since she came from the Podlasie region (Bargłow) , close to Russia, Lithuania and former Prussia, a real hodgepodge historically.
She was my mother's mom.
My Mom is referred to as Busia as well.

Naladahc     Feb 19, 2008, 01:40pm  #17

While I believe it is most likely derived from "babusia", I've noticed that it seems purely of Polonia creation.

I grew up in the Polish Diaspora of Toledo, Ohio and "Busia" was the most common term for grandmother that I ever heard, including in my own families.

From my encounters with other Polish-Americans, I think it can definitely be seen as a "regional" variation as well since friends who grew up near Chicago and Wisconsin's Poles used "Babcia" which surprisingly always sounded foreign to me.

bobby Threads: 7
Posts: 32
Joined: Dec 4, 2007
  ♂   Feb 23, 2008, 07:23am  #18

My grandmother (she lived near Sanok) taught me Babushka - Grandmother.

Dzhaklin Threads: 3
Posts: 186
Joined: Dec 3, 2007
  ♀   Feb 25, 2008, 09:28pm  #19

bobby wrote:

My grandmother (she lived near Sanok) taught me Babushka - Grandmother.


ба́бушка (babushka) it's russian for grandmother.

GrandeSande Threads: 2
Posts: 131
Joined: Feb 9, 2007
  ♀   Feb 26, 2008, 11:26am  #20

My grandmother used to call the headscarves the women wore "babushkas".
Any old lady was a "babcia".

lir<visiting>     Feb 26, 2008, 04:02pm  #21

Grzegorz_ wrote:
Babcia is a correct one.


Hi to Gregorz, I just have a single ticket for now on PF <just a short visit for now>

I never knew my Babcia, wish I had but I remember seeing the pictures where the older women wore headscarves, usually wore bright red patterned ones if I remember correctly.

Dzhaklin Threads: 3
Posts: 186
Joined: Dec 3, 2007
  ♀   Feb 26, 2008, 04:20pm  #22

GrandeSande wrote:
My grandmother used to call the headscarves the women wore "babushkas"


It's sort of used as slang now too. Like anyone who wears head scarves might be called an old lady... or granny.

GrandeSande Threads: 2
Posts: 131
Joined: Feb 9, 2007
  ♀   Feb 26, 2008, 07:22pm  #23

Dzhaklin wrote:
Like anyone who wears head scarves might be called an old lady... or granny.

Sounds like my Grandmother... calling any other old lady a babcia, but she never was one. At 99, she was still a proud lady who never wore a babushka.
She had more hats and purses than anyone I have ever known!
What a lady!!!

El Gato Threads: 8
Posts: 445
Joined: Sep 21, 2007
  ♂   Feb 26, 2008, 07:58pm  #24

HulaGRL wrote:
Babcia or Busha


I was always told and have actually read before that "babcia" is definitely Polish, and that "busha" is Hungarian.

Anyone else heard something similar. I can't remember where I read it before, but busha is Hungarian.

People would always say something about their "busha" whenever they found out I was Polish, and I had no clue wtf they were talking about...

Dzhaklin Threads: 3
Posts: 186
Joined: Dec 3, 2007
  ♀   Feb 26, 2008, 08:49pm  #25

El Gato wrote:
and that "busha" is Hungarian.

No, Nagymama is hungarian

El Gato Threads: 8
Posts: 445
Joined: Sep 21, 2007
  ♂   Feb 26, 2008, 08:54pm  #26

Dzhaklin wrote:
No, Nagymama is hungarian


It's only what I heard. I can't really quote it. Maybe it's a hybrid word from all sorts of people.

Dzhaklin Threads: 3
Posts: 186
Joined: Dec 3, 2007
  ♀   Feb 26, 2008, 09:04pm  #27

I don't know. I've heard a lot of people swear busha was polish. I don't know where it came from but it would be interesting to find out.

krysia Threads: 26
Posts: 3,509
Joined: Aug 10, 2006
  ♀   Feb 26, 2008, 10:47pm  #28

babushka is russian and busha is a short form of it.

zaleski Threads: -
Posts: 10
Joined: Oct 22, 2007
  ♂   Feb 28, 2008, 01:16pm  #29

If you really want to make granny endeared to you, address her as stary kobieta

pinky     Feb 28, 2008, 01:38pm  #30

zaleski wrote:
If you really want to make granny endeared to you, address her as stary kobieta



You got to be joking !

She'll make your life hell if you do hahaha !



Home / Culture / Unanswered [this forum]

Babcia or Busha - any social class difference?

  Important: If you post a link to a non-English source, please ALWAYS summarize / translate the relevant parts into English!  

To post as guest, enter a temporary and unique username (without password) or login and post as a member.