In response to a lovely article about the languages of love, published by BBC News Magazine this morning, I thought it would be a good idea to contribute to the pool of terms of endearment with some odd ones we tend to use in Greek:
Ζαργάνα μου (zarʝána mu) = my garfish
I suppose that being called a fish does not come to mind with the most positive connotations, but the explanation for this pet name is pretty basic and straightforward. Given that this is a term of endearment reserved only for women, it is employed due to the long and slender figure that characterises garfish, in order to praise a svelte silhouette. One could say that ζαργάνα μου is a bit outdated, however it is still fairly popular and it gives flirting a humorous touch.
Πασά μου (pasha mu) = my Pachá (Turkish official)
It’s boys’ turn now; Ladies, I realise referring to your other half as a Turkish general might not strike you as the most romantic thing but, as an honorary title, ‘Pasha’ is equivalent to the British title of Lord. It is not hard to imagine the origin of the term if you think that Greece has been under the Turkish rule for 400 years. Pacha was a figure to be admired and to look up to and the phrase is still used to refer to a man in an affectionate way.
Μανάρι μου (manári mu) = my newly born sheep
Now this must sound much more affectionate already. Μανάρι is a fairly popular pet name for both men and women and the warmth of the term is naturally associated with the cuteness of a white, fuzzy and cuddly new-born sheep.