Our research revealed that there are three main contenders for the terms of endearment title. Overall, mate was the most popular term, shared by 23% of respondents from across a range of regions. Hot on the heels was the term love/my love (20%) which found a stronghold in Merseyside, as well as in the counties of South and West Yorkshire. An interesting entry into the top three was 22% of people telling us they don’t use any word like this.
Hello! Which of these words (if any) do you use as a term of endearment, even with strangers?
This bar graph animation shows how the use of these words has changed over time.
Interactive words map
Click this button to view the different responses to this question on a map.
You can tick the boxes on the side to select a word and show the places the word was used by the people who completed The Great Big Dialect Hunt. This map is based on where people grew up, not where they live now.