'Auntie' or 'Aunty': How to Spell It Correctly

By Shanea Patterson, updated on November 10, 2022

Is it ‘Auntie’ or ‘Aunty’? If you’re wondering what the correct spelling is, we’ll cover that in this article and teach you how to use it correctly in a sentence.

Want the short answer? It’s correct to say ‘Auntie’ or ‘Aunty.’ It’s more common in British English to say ‘Aunty.’

Aunty or Auntie – Which is Correct?

So, which is correct to use – auntie or aunty? As you just learned, both are okay to use because they mean the same thing.

Aunty vs. Auntie – Key Differences to Know

The word ‘aunty’ is actually older than the word ‘auntie,’ which is surprising to a lot of people.

Most dictionaries will lead you to the spelling of ‘auntie’ rather than ‘aunty’ even if you type it into the search bar.

Definition and Meaning

The definition of the word ‘auntie,’ according to Merriam-Webster, is “aunt.” And the definition of ‘aunt’ is “the sister of one’s father or mother” and “the wife of one’s uncle or aunt.”

The definition of ‘aunty’ is the same. It’s just typically used more often in British English than American English.

A Brief History

In 1984, the Times of India (ToI) revealed the usage in communist China, where ‘auntie’ meant a maidservant.

Within some cultures, such as some Indian cultures, the word ‘aunty’ is used to describe someone, not in the family. It’s used to show both respect and familiarity to someone who’s not necessarily related to you.

Throughout the hit Netflix show, Never Have I Ever, the younger Indian characters often call the older Indian adults ‘auntie’ even if they’re not related as a sign of respect. But that may be slowly changing, and the word might carry negative connotations.

In some communities, however, it’s not seen as a sign of respect. In the African American community, the word is seen negatively, usually in reference to someone’s age.

How to Use ‘Auntie’ and ‘Aunty’ in a Sentence

Now that you know the different ways to use the word ‘auntie,’ let’s discuss how to use it in a sentence.

Take a look at some examples of how to use it in a sentence correctly:

  • I love going to my auntie’s house for Thanksgiving; she has a beautiful house.
  • My auntie is my mother’s best friend.
  • My auntie on my dad’s side isn’t very friendly to the rest of the family.
  • My auntie Willerine was such a kind soul; she touched everyone she came in contact with.

To use ‘aunty,’ you’d do the same thing. Replacing the word ‘auntie with ‘aunty’ is perfectly acceptable, especially if you’re writing or speaking to an international audience.

Final Thoughts on ‘Auntie’ and ‘Aunty’

Now that you know that it’s fine to use either ‘auntie’ or ‘aunty,’ you can pick and choose which one to use. However, just know that most people in America are going to be most familiar with ‘auntie.’

Just like phrases like ‘clever’ and ‘more cleverer,’ ‘In the Summer’ and ‘In Summer,’ and ‘Associated To’ and ‘Associated With,’ you don’t have to choose, unlike phrases like ‘simpler’ and ’more simple,’ where there’s only one correct answer.

Our library covers a bunch of different confusing words and phrases, such as ‘double check,’ ‘please advise,’ and ‘apportion versus portion versus proportion.’

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Written By:
Shanea Patterson
Shanea Patterson is a writer based in New York and loves writing for brands big and small. She has a master's degree in professional writing from New York University and a bachelor's degree in English from Mercy College.

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