Husmoder

English translation: the lady of the house

GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
Danish term or phrase:Husmoder
English translation:the lady of the house
Entered by: Diarmuid Kennan

09:59 Aug 10, 2007
Danish to English translations [PRO]
Poetry & Literature
Danish term or phrase: Husmoder
I don't find the modern word 'housewife' 'appropriate with regards to the former meaning, a woman who was in charge of an entire household - basically a mixture of 'madmor' and husmoder. Is there an old English equivalent?
Gitte Gifford
Local time: 04:51
the lady of the house
Explanation:
A housekeeper is an employee, the mistress or lady of the house are family members. Mistress implies there are household staff, at least to my ear.
Selected response from:

Diarmuid Kennan
Ireland
Local time: 03:51
Grading comment
Selected automatically based on peer agreement.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
3 +2Housekeeper
Eliza-Anna
2 +2the lady of the house
Diarmuid Kennan
3matriarch
Charlesp
3goodwife
Terence Ajbro
3Chatelaine
Christine Andersen


Discussion entries: 7





  

Answers


24 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
Chatelaine


Explanation:
Chatelaine

Since you actually ask for an older word, but it is marked as dated in the Concise Oxford dictionary.

chatelaine
· n.
1 dated a woman in charge of a large house.
2 historical a set of short chains attached to a woman’s belt, used for carrying keys or other items.
– ORIGIN C19: from Fr. châtelaine, fem. of châtelain ‘castellan’, ult. rel. to castle.
_________________

Longmans says:

formal; the female owner, or wife of the owner, of a large country house or castle in France

(and the key chain as above).

It is a bit literary, but might fit your context.

Christine Andersen
Denmark
Local time: 04:51
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 14
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

4 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +2
Housekeeper


Explanation:
This is a possibility. A house keeper was in charge of the affairs of the household

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 4 mins (2007-08-10 10:04:25 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

NB - it is 'housekeeper' - not 'house keeper'

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 8 mins (2007-08-10 10:08:06 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Okay, I get your point. How about 'lady of the house'?

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 18 mins (2007-08-10 10:18:08 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Perhaps mistress of the house would be more suitable here?

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 57 mins (2007-08-10 10:56:45 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

As long as you say 'mistress of the house' it has no connotations in my opinion. ' I have check this with one other native speaker who agrees with me.

Mistres' on its own could be very easily misunderstood of course:)

Eliza-Anna
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:51
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Christine Andersen: I think mistress is fine - and does not always have sexual connotations - a bit like 'bolle' in Danish, which is an indispensible item in a baker's shop
53 mins

agree  Michele Fauble: 'mistress of the house'
1 hr
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
goodwife


Explanation:
a bit archaic, maybe what you are looking for.

Terence Ajbro
Sweden
Local time: 04:51
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5 peer agreement (net): +2
the lady of the house


Explanation:
A housekeeper is an employee, the mistress or lady of the house are family members. Mistress implies there are household staff, at least to my ear.

Diarmuid Kennan
Ireland
Local time: 03:51
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 18
Grading comment
Selected automatically based on peer agreement.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  William [Bill] Gray: Or "mistress of the house".
1 hr

agree  Charlesp
2 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
matriarch


Explanation:
depending upon your context.

Charlesp
Sweden
Local time: 04:51
Native speaker of: English
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)



Login or register (free and only takes a few minutes) to participate in this question.

You will also have access to many other tools and opportunities designed for those who have language-related jobs (or are passionate about them). Participation is free and the site has a strict confidentiality policy.

KudoZ™ translation help

The KudoZ network provides a framework for translators and others to assist each other with translations or explanations of terms and short phrases.


See also:

Your current localization setting

English

Select a language

Term search
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search